We’ll never know since Masai Ujiri is unlikely to fess up to it, but I wonder what his intent was in the Rudy Gay trade. If it was to raise the white flag, then this entire season is the ultimate antithesis of Ujiri’s intent. In either case, I’ll take it since whatever his intent may have been doesn’t shadow the results that have followed.

Teams often end up reversing their fortunes by executing transactions that they had full confidence in at the time, just take a look at Amare Stoudemire to NY, Dwight Howard to the Lakers, Greg Oden over Kevin Durant, the list is endless. This is then chalked up to bad luck, poor drafting, and general failure to predict the future, a near-impossible task. In the Raptors case, the opposite seems to have happened and Ujiri just may have gotten it all right by getting it all wrong. This doesn’t bother me as much as it does other people since the results are what matters, rarely the intentions.

I do have confidence in Ujiri and it has nothing to do with the Gay trade. He seems to be a patient man looking to secure the long-term good of the franchise rather than bathe in short-term benefits, which is quite ironic given that his detractors accuse him of not taking the long view. For example, people criticize him for not flipping Kyle Lowry for a 2014 pick as if that was ever an offer, without ever realizing that even if the Raptors lose Lowry for nothing, the money he would have been paid could be parleyed to players like Greg Monroe or Eric Bledsoe this summer, netting the same effect (i.e., instead of a pick you get a starting-caliber player). Things aren’t quite as snug as I described that, but you get the point: losing Lowry for nothing frees up money to pay for free-agents.

Whatever your opinion of DeMar DeRozan may be, he is coming to be the kind of player that, dare I say, could be used to lure free-agents. Instead of having universal appeal and charm, he makes up for it in grit and pure results. If I’m Eric Bledsoe and I’m offered a contract by the Raptors, I’m looking hard at the possibility of forming a 2/3 punch with DeRozan. I’ll go as far as to state that DeRozan’s current appeal far exceeds whatever Chris Bosh had at any point in his Raptors tenure. DeRozan’s a wing player that isn’t plagued by selfish bouts, is an extremely committed individual, and has a growing reputation that is far different from the “fake toughness” that is to this day Chris Bosh’s watermark.

At the start of the season we had an expectations that perhaps Jonas Valanciunas and DeMar DeRozan might lead the charge and become top-level players. It turned out that Terrence Ross has arguably overtaken Valanciunas, Lowry has been the most impactful player, and Valanciunas’s development isn’t as linear as we had supposed. As they say, man proposes, God disposes. It could now be that Valanciunas – a player considered untouchable last summer – is the asset that could be flipped to better the team rather than Lowry or even Ross. It’s pure speculation to even go there, yet it helps outline the possibilities that are in play this summer.

None of this even touches the draft where available point guards include Tyler Ennis, Vasilije Micic, and Jahii Carson. Nor does it consider that pretty much the entire Denver Nuggets team is on the block, not to mention similar situations in Minnesota and other clubs. Sign-and-trade options for Lowry aren’t talked about enough as well. Add all this together and it becomes foolish to suggest that the Raptors have locked themselves into mediocrity by winning in 2013-14. This is a very unpredictable period for the Raptors, a time where they have done well to acquire assets, retain their pick in a loaded (although, in my opinion, overrated) draft, and trim their payroll and contracts where the only truly “bad” contract is Landry Fields. All this adds up to extreme flexibility and thus implies unpredictability.

I’m enjoying this season and it’s not because I’m a happy-go-lucky fan that lives in the moment and doesn’t give a thought to the future. I have given it a thought and see more possibilities to get better than suffer a reversal.

  • stooley

    Chuck Hayes is a bad contract too, just saying.

    • threo

      Same with Steve Novak

      • arsenalist

        Really disagree with this one. He’s a specialist who is very good at what he does, and makes $3.4M a year. Ideally, he’d be around the $2M mark but I don’t think an additional $1.4M makes him a bad contract. His usage (or lack of) affects our perception of his actual ability. Novak has rarely been a rotation player (http://rr9.in/1iaangF) for any team, and his role has always been situational. He can be useful if Casey figures out how to use him. I’m a little surprised we don’t do offense/defense subs with him late in games.

    • arsenalist

      Yeah…I’ll concede it, although Hayes is technically useful given our lack of depth at center. He’s a useful player but makes too much money. Ideally, he’s your third center at $2M or so, right now he’s at $6M which is crazy.

      • Stephen

        Yeah – he’s being paid a million dollars per foul. That’s nuts.

        • Will

          haha, that’s an interesting way of looking at it.

  • Nilanka15

    After the 6-12 start, I honestly think Ujiri had intentions of securing a high pick with a poor record. It seemed like dismantling the roster was on his agenda. First the Gay trade, and then the Lowry rumours. With all due respect to Vasquez and Salmons, they’re not players targeted to bring a lottery team into the playoffs.

    But then the team started winning. As good as any GM claims to be, he can’t predict chemistry. The guys started buying into Casey’s system, accepted their roles, and started learning from their previous mistakes. Ujiri has basically said that sometimes you get lucky with trades, and it looks like he did here.

    So here we are today. 20-something games away from our 1st playoff berth in 5 years. Do we avoid Indy and Miami in the 1st round? Does Lowry stay? Does Casey stay? So many questions with very few answers, but that should make the next 8 months very interesting in Raptorland.

    • arsenalist

      “So many questions with very few answers at the moment…”

      True enough, and I’d take it further that the uncertainty doesn’t necessarily translate to a negative outcome. Yes, we don’t have a high pick in the draft but do have a first round pick which Ujiri should be able to work with. After all, if GMing was as simple as drafting players using top five picks, then anybody could do it. I’ve always maintained that it’s how a GM does with his 15-29 picks is what indicates his ability and we’ll get to see Ujiri’s first-hand. I’m looking forward to this draft day more than ever.

      • stretch bigman

        Uncertainty doesn’t necessarily translate into a positive outcome either.

    • What the

      I think it’s all about evaluation this season, (Casey and BCs 5) MU does not know what he has and thats what this season is about who stays and who goes Barnie and Gay was a no brainer ,now we need to evaluate the video guy for not showing Val videos of #33 my kids don’t know metric,the food taste different two hands rebounding ,Tyson over in NY is rebounding like Val with one hand and their fans don’t like it.

    • Stephen

      It’s going to take a seriously shocking collapse to meet Indy or Miami in the 1st round at this point. In fact, SCS now has it as a 0% chance. Their numbers aren’t perfect because of the way they calculate probabilities, but it’s gotta be, realistically, less than 5% absent a string of serious injuries.

      • Thomas Smith

        I see the Raptors dropping as far as 6th. Chicago is on a tear and has the talent to continue their recent play. I expect them to finish third. Brooklyn is finding their stride and likely to push for home court advantage in the last coming weeks. Again talent and experience can’t be overlooked. The wild card is Washington. I can see them squeaking by Toronto for 5th in the conference in the last week.

        Still, as long as we don’t face Miami or Indiana in the first round, we have a shot at making the second round. Home court advantage would be nice though.

        • Milesboyer

          For the Nets to overtake Toronto and win the Atlantic, here’s the type of scenario that would have to play out: say the Raptors go a very average 13-10 over their last 23 games, they would finish the season at 46 wins. Because they own the tiebraker with Brooklyn even if they lose to them next Monday, the Nets would need 47 wins to take the Atlantic. That means they would have to go 18-6 over their remaining games. Ease of schedule slightly favours the Raptors as well. Unlikely that the Raptors don’t win the Atlantic barring a major injury or breakdown which locks them into at least the 4th seed.

        • Stephen

          I can see Chicago passing them for good, but at the same time they’re playing with such a high intensity level now that they might run out of gas in a month.

          Beyond that… I’m worried about PLAYING the Nets because the NBA wants KG / Pierce / Kidd / et al to play one of the big two and the deck will be stacked as a result. But they’re not passing the Raptors. Washington is in trouble, as it is.

    • FLUXLAND

      So if that was his intention, the “winning” is a result of his foresight or the team being forced to play as a unit due to lack of a true superstar? How much credit is he to receive for this winning/chemistry?

      That being said/asked, there is no indication of what his plans are at all, or how he views the pieces on this team. To suggest mediocrity is not a possibility or a “foolish” view seems naive – this “our possibilities are endless and we are always looking for ways to improve the team” line is straight out of BC’s book.

      If we are going to acknowledge the vast uncertainty (and not ignore how the East played out this year), how can you extrapolate grandiose statements to the tune of “mediocrity is not a possibility” and anyone suggesting so is “foolish”. There are countless examples of teams having a “stepping stone” year, only to crash and burn in spectacular fashion the following season. Simply believing something will not happen doesn’t suddenly eliminate the remaining possibilities, or is ignorance just bliss?

      • arsenalist

        Didn’t say that mediocrity isn’t a possibility, I said:

        “…it becomes foolish to suggest that the Raptors have locked themselves into mediocrity by winning in 2013-14″

        There’s always a chance of anything happening, but to say winning now = locked into definite mediocrity is incorrect.

        There’s simply too many variables at play, and a good chance of the team building on this season rather than the season constraining the franchise.

        • FLUXLAND

          I just do not see, while not knowing anything about the GMs intentions and recognizing the “too many variables at play”, how one can imply it is foolish to suggest so.

          In fact, if anything, neither stance holds any validity, really – but I am far more inclined to think it is a very real possibility, more so than the generally accepted “this is a contender a piece away” view (another symptom of the BC MO).

          We may look back one day on all of this MU “patience” and “evaluating” as simple indecisiveness…a recipe for mediocrity.

          • afrocarter

            “…it becomes foolish to suggest that the Raptors have LOCKED themselves into mediocrity by winning in 2013-14″ i.e. thinking that mediocrity can be the ONLY outcome of this year’s success.

            Surely we can all admit that thinking in such absolutes isn’t the greatest approach.

            • FLUXLAND

              Again, not about absolutes, just about likely outcomes. I do not see how an abundance of uncertainty and lack of insight on the regime’s direction makes mediocrity a foolish suggestion. I guess, for me, the “winning” doesn’t eliminate the two aforementioned realities.

              • afrocarter

                Nobody is saying it’s a foolish suggestion, just that it’s foolish to assert that it is the only possible outcome.

              • CJT

                I also think it is unwise to assume that just because you don’t know what MU’s plans are, that he doesn’t have any plans and is indecisive. I believe he sees the situation as a fluid one and has kept as many option open as possible. I think it is a refreshing change that the franchises plans aren’t common knowledge to us or other teams and that the decisions being made aren’t single minded in direction and execution.

                • FLUXLAND

                  Fair enough. We just disagree, that’s all.

                  I see the whole “fluid situation”/ “evaluating” / “keeping options open” as the same tune with different lyrics from the BC era..”retooling” / “flexible” / basically, “building on the fly” that we have seen over and over again.

                  I appreciate you are willing to ignore past history because there’s someone else singing the song, but that to me seems…unwise.

                • CJT

                  Ok, I can see that. I always felt that BC was outwardly vocal about his plans, I assume because he wanted everyone to know how smart he thought he was. I don’t believe that keeping your options open to move in many directions is the same as BC’s buzzwords. I agree that it is unwise not to question a GM based on his record. With MU we don’t know what direction his plan will take so that can’t be questioned as of yet. So far his moves have been small but I believe he has made good moves to rid the club of poor contracts and will evaluate him based on his actions.

                • FLUXLAND

                  I don’t see why one can’t question the unwillingness to shed some light on direction. Would it be unfair to say that same mysterious approach invites questions?

                  Getting rid of contracts (as much as Raptor fans have been brainwashed into thinking contracts are unmovable) is not enough to start making assumptions.

                • CJT

                  Of course you can question his willingness to divulge his plans if you want to, but really is it anyone’s business but his? I didn’t find BC to be mysterious at all but overt in his spilling the beans about what his intentions were.
                  I agree that most fans are drama queens with regards to contracts and moving players. Any contract is movable depending on what you are willing to take back in return, but I believe that MU made good deals for his bad contracts. The Sacto players have strong contributors to the team.

      • onemanweave

        No, ignorance is NOT bliss. There were platoons of Toronto tank commanders demanding they tear things apart. Not of them seem to be blissful.

        • onemanweave

          None of them….

        • FLUXLAND

          The tank and non tank debate is simply about the long term/big picture vs short term/instant gratification view.

          If you are taking this year as a sign of things to come or believe this is a contender foundation, anything anyone from the “tear it down” camp says will mean nothing to you. And you should expect the same in return. Only time will show us who had the more valid assessment, just like it did during the BC era.

          • What the

            this is not going to end well , we have Flux and Tim W in the house spewing crap Pooka help us! save us!

            • FLUXLAND

              I would expect nothing less from p00ka and his cronies than to take the conversation away from ball and start talking about “true fans”. Pathetic.

              • ItsAboutFun

                But as usual, you’re not “talking ball”. You’re just whining about the GM not feeding your pathetic, self-entitled, self his plans. Troll.

      • stretch bigman

        Not only is it a line out of BC’s book, he was his mentor!

        The wild leaps of faith in this post are glaring yet I don’t see much angst on the site regarding it.lol

        Not even sure how Masai can take that much credit considering this is more BC’s team than his.

        • FLUXLAND

          Yeah, when MU was hired I was saying the same – hiring BC’s lackey.

          Yet, his tenure in Denver and EOY award has allowed for a new flavour of Kool Aid to start flowing… even the reception was similar to BC’s arrival – the Messiah has arrived, all believe in the Messiah, he is our one and only true god.

    • asifyouknow

      Lowry has had issues with coaching in the past, I like the guy by the way, this year he hasn’t had any issues that we know about, but remember this is his contract year so he has to be Mother Teresa.

      Here a quote in a publication from a few years ago that should make us ask the question: Is Lawry ok working with Casey?
      Is hard not to like McHale but Lowry had lots of problems with him.

      “If things aren’t addressed coaching-wise, I guess I have to be moved.”
      But McHale did not believe the issues were too great for him and Lowry to work well together.
      “That’s very surprising,” McHale said. “I didn’t think we had too much of a problem coexisting this year. Everybody has a little beef every once in a while. I didn’t feel like (there were problems). He apparently did.
      “There were times that we didn’t agree on things. There were times that I got on him. I don’t think it was unduly harsh on anybody.”
      Lowry and McHale seemed most at odds during a late-season game in Denver when McHale grabbed Lowry and pulled him back toward a huddle during a timeout with Lowry reacting angrily on the court. Both downplayed the incident in the next few days, but Lowry confirmed he needed to be restrained”

      Time will tell. I think both coach and PG are gone.

  • StabbyRaccoon

    I think it was pretty clear to a lot of people that the Raptors would see improvements from a similar trade. Get Rudy Gay out of the starting lineup and start Terrence Ross to improve the overall efficiency of the starters (I said that!) and WON’T SOMEBODY PLEASE THINK OF THE BENCH? Their bench was abysmal and their biggest liability.

    Though I don’t think anybody expected them to be this good. Ujiri was most likely making his roster more flexible with the trade and didn’t expect the team to improve THAT much. They went into this season with success as a possibility so you can’t do a true tank that gets a top 5 pick with that, but you can get a pretty good pick. But this is good too, this works, Ujiri looks good and suddenly we have an entertaining season. I agree that we’ll never know for sure, but Ujiri seems to be taking a path that tends to be good for a lot of games: maximize the number of options you can take in the future.

  • DanH

    Fields is by no means a bad contract. He’s expiring next year, as is Hayes. Novak’s the closest thing the Raps have to a bad contract, and he’s very manageable and probably tradeable.

  • AnthonyF

    The Gay trade changed everything. Instead of a BIG question mark and lamenting they missed Harrison Barnes by 1 pick, they have a player in Ross who may become and a very useful NBA player. Demar Derozan is no longer a competent wing that can score and is so so on defense, but an All-Star producing on a winning team. Lowry is an elite point guard who’d best be served re-signing on a team with an upside.

    There is a great contract and team player in Amir, a very good bench and a team that competes.

    The Raptors since the trade have had only a loss to San Antonio (first game prior to arrivals of Vazquez/Patterson….) and to the Clippers in LA, where they were not in the game with a chance to win in the last 2 minutes. Think about that for a minute……

    • Will

      I totally agree with you. Another thing that’s very impressive is their overall consistency. Despite mental lapses for entire quarters or even halves, when it comes down to wins and losses, they’ve only lost two in a row twice since the trade. The first time was against Miami and Indiana, which is understandable. The second was against Sacramento and the Clippers. I love that we don’t go on losing streaks anymore.

  • jakdripr

    I think Ujiri knew the effect getting rid of gay would have. I remember when the trade went down, me and my brothers said the only bad part of the trade was the fact that it made us better(we were very pro-tank at the time), I didn’t expect it to make us this good, but it doesn’t take a lot to see how it would have improved the team. With that said, if an average Bball fan like myself could deduce that, I don’t think Ujiri was too surprised at the outcome. I’m certain he didn’t expect it to make us as good as it did, but he definitely must have expected our team to improve.

  • ibleedpurple

    “DeRozan’s a wing player that isn’t plagued by selfish bouts, is an extremely committed individual, and has a growing reputation that is far different from the “fake toughness” that is to this day Chris Bosh’s watermark.”

    The shot at Chris Bosh was unnecessary. Fake toughness was never what Chris Bosh was about. His tenure in Toronto can only be described as one of bloated expectations from a so called “franchise” player who was, in fact, no where near “franchise” talent level. Bosh is a fantastic talent and as a second/third option there’s no one better but he didn’t posses the leadership skill nor the mean streak to lead a team deep into the playoffs. Yet I would have to argue that DD doesn’t possess either of those skills in any greater abundance than did Bosh. He does, however, have a humility that, when combined with his hard work and on court success, is helping to change the culture of the organization from inside the locker room out.

    • stretch bigman

      Bosh is a better player than anyone on this Raps team but don’t let that get in the way of a good argument.

      • What the

        fuck Tim your not even sorry for telling those lies about Komar the Allstar, you just show up with more lies and a new name …

        • stretch bigman

          Say what you want, say what you will…..but you still ain’t saying nuthin.

      • jlongs

        He is, and it’s unfortunate that the teams built around him did not have the right chemistry (save for that 06-07 season with Garbo, and Smitch preaching D) as the team has right now. Although I still think he doesn’t deserve max, which is what he would have got had he stayed.

    • Guest

      Chris Bosh was a whiny little bitch that shaq had pegged to a tee. That shot was more than necessary.
      ‘Ohhhh… don’t boo me when I miss free throws…”
      Shut your mouth and earn your 10 plus million. Whiny bitch.

  • Take it in

    Who cares about chuck the summer will tell the truth and how many picks we have

  • stretch bigman

    Interesting that there were some posters dissing other writers for their views and opinions yesterday.

    I wonder if this is more to their liking?

    A lot of reaching and grasping but who cares as long as it’s positive right?lol

    -If Lowry doesn’t sign they have more money for other free agents. True, but when has Free Agency been kind to the Raptors? Also, Lowry is making $6.5 million. Good luck finding a replacement at that price or in that ballpark.

    -If you were Bledsoe you would take the Raps seriously, but you are not so the assumption is a wild one. Leave a young playoff team in the West for a team that just made a similar playoff run in a historically weak conference? Sounds like a plan, sign me up! Yeah right.

    -Derozan luring other free agents here? His appeal far exceeding Bosh? Really? Based on what I ask? At the end of the day it’s about the player and their abilities. Neither is a star or attracting any other players but if you think Demar is all of a sudden a beacon to other players to come here, more power to you. Demar still couldn’t hold Bosh’s jock btw.

    -Bringing up college point guard prospects doesn’t mean you will be in a position to draft any of them and still yet, I find it interesting that a lottery pick for many fans is not guaranteed to transform a franchise as it’s all luck but at #21, Ujiri will make his salt picking gems. OK. If you feel that way just imagine what he could do with a top ten pick?

    -With new CBA, sign and trades will not be as simple as they have been previously.

    I hope the masses are pleased. It certainly should make you feel more joyful as to what’s happening now. As for me, while I respect others opinions on the state of the team, this speculation is great for conversation but in terms of reality, way off base and a lot of it unlikely.

    • afrocarter

      These are some damn good points. I don’t agree with even bringing up Bledsoe. What are the chances that he leaves Phoenix, a team that has shown a heckuva lot more promise than Toronto? Would he leave his current backcourt partner in Dragic for DeRozan? Iffy.

      Kudos for the sobering post, even if it is a tad hate-filled.

      • stretch bigman

        No hate here. Just trying to keep everything in perspective as it seems to me on this site that recently if you are not fully on the bandwagon you are not a ‘true fan’. Of course, I completely disagree with this stance.

        My main thing is after the BC debacle, there is no way that any fans of this team should be blindly trusting any GM or allowing his ‘plan’ to not be vigorously questioned, regardless of the team results this year.

        Its not about this year. it’s about the foundation moving forward

        • afrocarter

          Agreed, and MU has gone on record plenty of times saying that this season is all about evaluation. The winning has been an exciting bonus — but more than anything it shows that the foundation required for moving forward is closer to being established than anybody would have thought at the beginning of the season.

          • FLUXLAND

            What is that foundation, in your opinion?

            • afrocarter

              Before anything else, I think the team’s dogged commitment to defense is the cornerstone of the foundation, with players like Ross and Amir playing key roles going forward. I think DeRozan has emerged as a very good wing player, one that I assume will only improve over the summer (e.g. corner 3’s, defense). Not a complete foundation by any stretch — nobody is saying it is — but with a near-elite defense, the Raptors are farther along than I would have dreamed.

              • FLUXLAND

                Near – elite defense? So our All Star wing, who by your own admission needs improvement in that area, and our C suggest to you elite defense? Sorry, defensive rankings..while ignoring the rebounding and PIP vs numbers… are not enough to convince me of the same argument you believe.

                I am happy that the team is farther along than you have dreamed, but going from brutal to something resembling a coherent team AND acknowledging the glaring issues with respect to rebounding/PIP/defense is not enough to claim any foundation of any sort – not in my book. But i can see how someone would be “fooled” into thinking there is one.

                • afrocarter

                  A 7th-ranked defense not enough to claim the beginnings of a foundation in your opinion? I guess we’ll have to agree to disagree then. Though I can do without your derision. Take that elsewhere, please.

                • FLUXLAND

                  No, no… no derision, at all. The “fooled” line was a poor attempt at carrying on the word of the day.

                  Yeah, a 7th ranked defense, while considering a multitude of factors I am sure we are to disagree on, is not enough to claims this as a foundation.

                  The question was what is that foundation? But you didn’t reply with anything concrete besides “dogged commitment to defense” , 7th place ranking (commitment/ranking and reality are not the same thing) and your assumption of improvement. And all the while you ignored the actual cornerstones of winning in the playoffs that I brought up: rebounding and protecting the paint.

                  So what is this foundation you speak of then? What is this team’s ID? Help me understand what is the basis of your claim there is a foundation in place?

                • Rapchat

                  So I’m new on this site and for some reason followed this Fluxland vs everyone thread, Haha. Fluxland with all due respect, you come across as a total hater looking to take on anyone, especially Arsenalist, which I have to say made his points much more clear to me. I actually appreciate your perspectives but you’re statements are seriously condescending, and although you bring up a ton of good points and stats for arguments sake, they do not hold any more water than the ones opposing you in any way, in fact the way you argue your good points, oddly seem to hold less water. Stretch also has a ton of points opposing the kool aid drinkers but seems to have a sound plot for his arguments where you just sound mad. The thing that comes across most clearly from everything I read from you is that BC ruined basketball for you. You make that very clear from your first few posts relating everything MU is doing to what BC did, clearly hurt and scarred and cynical. I think a lot more people would appreciate your comments if you had a different approach. That is all.

                • FLUXLAND

                  Thanks.

                  BC didn’t ruin it… maybe MLSE and their agenda. $ first, everything else second.

                  My form is what is.. too many people focus on that as opposed to the points I am bringing up. If people are getting their feelings hurt over how I write, they clearly are missing the point.

                  As far as Arse, I am not taking him on… his 1st reply to me yesterday was “hate everything about everything”, plus the whole foolish thing in the article got me going.

                  Anywho… I appreciate your view, thanks for being civil.

                • Guest

                  Thanks for being civil?
                  The points you attempt to bring up are cloaked in bile and poor, ranting grammar.There’s never any context or an attempt to consider the other point of view, you just spew nonsense to get a reaction.

                  “Thanks for being civil” he says. You don’t appreciate others views. This thread is the first time I’ve seen you even make a comment regarding basketball. You usually just deride fans as “homers” and spew your nonsense filth, attacking the character of raptors fans.

                  You’re a joke, and your back peddling in the last comment in pathetic and deplorable.

                • FLUXLAND

                  You should come around and read more often. Please show me my homer comments. I am willing to bet it happens far less than you imply. First time, eh? Sure bud,

                  Again, you wanna keep focusing on my form and crying like a little girl, go ahead. Not my fault you are a emotional princess.

                  The other view has to actually make sense and be convincing, not some crap about giving it time and talking about hope.

                  You suffer from selective reading, because you don’t like how I say things. Get over yourself, no one cares how you want things presented,…no one is here for you reading pleasure.

                  I’m the joke? Bro, you come on here to pass judgment on me and haven’t said a thing about the Raptors. Your crush on me is cute.. but you need to focus on the matter being discussed.. not how it is being discussed. Stop crying like a teenager on her period. Man up.

            • Guest

              What was Houston’s foundation before they flipped their assets for Harden then signed Dwight? A bunch of mediocre, young, improving players who had the potential to grow into more. Also, not as an excuse, but I think it will be interesting to see how this new CBA dictates team management over the next 3-5 years. 3 Max players is now truly unsustainable as the repeater taxes add up. If team can’t match their superstars with another superstar due to financial limitations, the 2-5 players on a team become more important.

              No clue if that will happen, though it was essentially the goal of the CBA. Although it was an in game rule change, the changes they made in the the mid-late 90s had a CRAZY effect on the game. So althoguh these are CBA changes, you never know.

              Kevin Durant wouldn’t make an all-star team in the mid 90s NBA. He’d he raped an beatdown at halfcourt everytime up the floor for weighing 190 pounds. Things can change.

              • FLUXLAND

                No clue. About the only thing you said that I agree with.

                LMAO. KD would make multiple AS in the 90s. You have zero idea what you are talking about… what f defense would stop him…lololol.. please show me the mid 90 defensive teams that would have shut him down.. hahahhah.

                You are clueless about ball, guy. Just give up.

          • stretch bigman

            How does it do this? In a weak conference with no expectations you have a team that has played well and over-performed beyond expectation. Does this mean this is the future core going forward? This core wasn’t good enough for anyone going forward 12-18 months ago and all the same players are still here.

            The Bucks made the playoffs last year and where are they now? GS was looked at as a contender after last years playoff run and are fighting to make the playoffs this year. I don’t necessarily think that the seasons results should determine that this is the team to move forward with. Masai said that Casey wouldn’t be judged by win-losses this season but the future of the franchise for the next 5-10 years should be? Come on man.

            • Ogi

              So what do you think should determine how to move forward?

              • stretch bigman

                I think that you know when you have the core of a team that you should move forward with.

                Not the best answer but I can only provide examples. OKC knew after they had Durant, Westbrook, Ibaka, (and Harden at the time) that it was now time to build around those players. I think Indiana while not having proven anything at this point, is content with the youth they have built around (George, Hibbert) and feel they can contend. I still don’t see them winning a ring but I can’t argue with their stance as they have the best record in the league. If Chicago gets Rose back next year with Mirotic, they might feel they are ready to ascend again. Common theme amongst these teams is they have elite players they are building around.

                When i say move forward, I mean a team that you think can grow and contend, not just hopefully make the playoffs each year.

                I try to just look at the individual players and what they bring to the table for the Raps. I like Lowry…a lot, but when I think of him, Demar, JV and Ross as the core moving forward not only does it not excite me but I don’t think their ceiling, even with JV and Ross getting better is no more than 1st round playoff team. Not being a hater, just trying to be realistic.

                • arsenalist

                  Can you list out all the teams that have strong foundations in the league, in your opinion?

                • Ghotte

                  Their collective argument seems to be that if you don’t have a foundation of elite players (at least 2 on the roster) and an elite level coach like Popovich, there’s every reason to question the plan that was put in place to build your team.

                  To answer your question: There are probably only 4-5 teams by my count that have a strong foundation – excluding teams that are aging or without elite talent. That’s a thin pool. And the Raptors will #fail unless they are considered as part of that group. (In their opinion.)

                • FLUXLAND

                  It’s about the program. Who on the Bulls is elite, exactly, with Rose being out? Radmanovic?

                • Ghotte

                  I’m sorry? Are you saying Chicago is an elite franchise? Outside of Noah who else has even near-Allstar talent?

                  The Lakers can be viewed as an elite franchise because of their perennially talented roster and coaching (excluding D’Antoni) but who on their current roster can you build around? Maybe the incoming draftee?

                  So, that leaves OKC, Indy, Miami (until the next summer) and possibly Houston, Portland, the Clippers and GSW. Elite talent. Good coaching.

                  Programs that are questionable at best.

                • FLUXLAND

                  Nothing to be sorry about.

                  Yes, I would call Chicago elite. I think they have established a culture that SCREAMS elite.

                  LA – you really think this is it? And a draftee? Should we start speculating or no? I am sure you’ve see the list of names mentioned in the Lakers conversation.

                  OKC, Indy, Miami, etc.. All elite front offices that attract the rest of the elite, either with their eye or reputation. Bird, Riles, Kevin, Jackson, Rivers etc. All the teams you mentioned have people that have played and won at the height of the game and understand how to establish an elite program.The Raptors have BC’s lackey and who?

                  Programs are questionable? You cannot be serious?! So, you’ve never seen elite talent with a shitty program/franchise? Really?

                • arsenalist

                  “A culture that screams elite” – are you trolling?

                  In the last nine years (since 2004-05) the Bulls had 5 first-round exits and missed the playoffs once, got bumped into the second-round twice. If the Raptors did the same you’d be calling them mediocre and what-not. They’ve made it to the Eastern finals once, so there’s that. You’re really confusing me.

                • FLUXLAND

                  That’s still more times than the Raptors. Perhaps screams to me because I am biased towards teams that actually implement a defense 1st culture, not just talking about it as a selling point.

                  And why are you starting with 2004? I thought it was pretty obvious any culture change with them would begin with TT. I’ll let you crunch the numbers since he’s been there. Please let me know how mediocre they’ve been.

                • arsenalist

                  I don’t even know what you’re talking about. I don’t think you do either. Also, the Raptors do have a defense-first approach with Ujiri /Casey.

                  I did “crunch” numbers for you and showed you their playoff success (or lack thereof) has been. In no season were they even close to winning the title, not even in their Eastern Finals appearance, in fact, they have had more “mediocre” seasons than successfully ones and somehow you’re calling that elite.

                  But let’s ignore all that and just stick with TT, under who they’ve lost in the second round (mediocre as per you), lost in the first round (terrible mediocre as per you), and made it to the Eastern finals (in his first season, weak East right?), and really had zero chance of winning the title that year. This is elite for you? Sounds to me you’re just arguing for the sake of it.

                • FLUXLAND

                  Selling point, not reality. You’ve got a C that doesn’t know how to fight for rebound and a paint zone that’s a welcoming area, but you wanna call this a defense first team? OK.

                  Elite compared to Raptors? Absolutely. Legitimately one piece away form contending? I can see it.

                  What are you even trying to get at? The Bulls are in the same boat as the Raps? On what planet?

                  Don’t be dense.. regardless of my criteria, their trips to playoffs and current general culture hold far more water for an argument of elite than anything going with the Raptors.

                  You are seriously going to tear down the Bulls to make same lame attempt at insinuating my logic is flawed? You are not even arguing, you are just babbling at this point.

                • arsenalist

                  Oh, they’re “elite” compared to the Raptors. I didn’t know elite had a relative aspect to it. Hey, are the Bobcats elite compared to the Bucks? Pray tell. Either you’re a legit contender, thus elite, or you’re not. That’s how the argument’s been presented. This intermediary, retarded level of elite is just that, retarded.

                  The Bulls are on the same planet as the Raptors when you look at the standings. In fact, they’re identical. Let’s play along and say that they’re much further ahead, they’re in their fourth season under the TT/Format combination, the Raptors are in their first with Casey/Ujiri, so surely you can’t compare the two anyway, right, right??

                  Your logic is just very arbitrary. The Hawks have had six straight playoff appearances and two series wins, according to your rationale, they would also be considered elite..or not? I’m not even sure. How about the Pistons? How about Memphis? Four series wins in the last three years? Elite? If, over the next three years, the Raptors exit the first round twice and win two series in one year, would they be elite? I’m not sure, what do you think?

                  Bottom line is that you’re constructing arguments entirely for the sake of them. You’ve reached a conclusion without any logic, based on some weird bias, and are scrambling to find articles that support it, rather randomly.

                • FLUXLAND

                  They are ahead by simply playing the way they have WITHOUT ELITE TRANSCENDING TALENT, named DRose. They are not even in the same galaxy, let alone planet.

                  TRoss gets injured on this team, and the excuses wagon has been fired up.

                  Bottom line, I am taking the Hawks (antic), Pistons (drummond) , Memphis (gasol) over the Raps any day of the week. You think coaches looking for jobs are taking the Raps over those teams, if presented with a job? LOL!

                  For the sake of them? Really, now? I am not buying your “this a defensive team” BS, so I am arguing for the sake of arguing? Weird bias? Like the one that wins in the playoffs? You’re right, there’s no logic in rebounds and protecting the paint… that’s just me scrambling to find articles that support my unfounded conclusions.

                  Get some sleep man, you’re losing it.

                • arsenalist

                  When did I criticize rebounding and rim-defense? Why would I even do that? That would be so…dumb…for anyone to do.

                  If you’re referring to JV’s shortcomings, know that he’s in his SECOND year. Jesus, I’ve pointed out his problems as much as anyone, but to write him off already?

                  You don’t have to “buy” my defensive team argument because I’m not selling it. I’m just letting stats speak.

                  I’m the one who has an objective hat on here, and not coming to the table with my mind already made up.

                  Final comment, I’m almost insulted that you’d think I’d put out shit to “appease the masses”. The opinions on this site have always been grounded in reality. If there’s a hint of optimism in one of the pieces, it’s just that, a little optimism. It shouldn’t be confused with supporting some kind of narrative.

                • FLUXLAND

                  No, you claimed those thing when stated by me are a “weird bias”. Or that’s how it reads.

                  I am letting stats speak as well.. we’re clearly choosing different ones. You like defensive ranking, it seems. I like PIP and rebounding.

                  Objective, eh? And then you follow that up with a hint of optimism? At what point does it become a made up mind? My mind is made up on past results..I don’t see how drawing from that is wrong, when there’s no evidence of anything else.

                  Probably just as insulted as I was over your ” you hate everything about everything” drivel. Appearances are a bitch, aren’t they?

                • Guest

                  If you like PIP and rebounding… how do you cheer for a D’antoni coached team? Really though. I figure you’d have enough to rant about on a Lakers message board to have no time to talk Raps.

                  Or whine/rant/bitch about Raps. Excuse the typo.

                • FLUXLAND

                  What are you talking about? Who said anything about the Lakers and how I cheer from them.

                  You’ve made 10 comments attacking me and not a word about the Raptors… hoolee f .. are you asking for my number?

                • Fluxlandschlepprock

                  God forbid anyone have some optimism around here. The thing is Fluxdouche has some solid points , but every Raptor win makes fluxdoches voice that much more shrill

                • Ghotte

                  The Clippers, as a franchise have been howling failures with exception of the past couple years. OKC has legitimacy since Durant became transcendent. Miami wasn’t elite till Shaq and Wade hooked up. It was a garbage franchise with beautiful weather for many years before that point.

                  The point being, there are numerous factors that contribute to make a franchise credible. Elite talent (multiple) and the management team capable of consistently pulling them together. Money. There are only a small handful of franchises with the ability to wear the elite label.

                  One could make the argument that Big Tim at the helm brings some of that elite franchise “glimmer” to the Raptors. Time (or Tim) will tell.

                • FLUXLAND

                  Multiple factors, that begin with the office and ownership to establish a foundation. Not 2 players, as you originally implied.

                • stretch bigman

                  I’ll try.

                  Miami- Lebron, Wade, Bosh
                  Indiana – George, Hibbert
                  Chicago – Rose, Noah, Butler, Mirotic
                  OKC – Durrant, Westbrook, Ibaka
                  SA – Duncan, Parker, Leonard
                  Port – Aldridge, Lillard
                  LAC – Paul, Griffin, Jordan
                  Hou – Harden, Howard, Parsons
                  GS – Curry, Thompson, Iggy
                  *Phx – Bledsoe, Dragic (this is a highly questionable example but I feel with their 4 1st
                  rounders they might be able to add that key piece in the offseason
                  Mem – Gasol, Conley
                  Min – Love, Rubio
                  NO – Davis, Holiday

                  Did my best. Scrutinize away.

                • arsenalist

                  I’m not scrutinizing, just curious as to your definition of ‘foundation’. This list sort of made sense to me until you threw GSW and CHI in there, at which point it became a list of “which team has three decent players”. The tail end of that list is a big reach, as even you’ll concede after a drink or two.

                  What I do agree with you is that four of the top five teams here are the only ones with a real shot at winning the title, the rest are playing for fun at the end of the day.

                  The margin between those pretenders (ones not named MIA, OKC, SAS, IND in the list) and the Raptors isn’t as big as you might think, and I concede that the Raptors are even below some of those teams. However, you have to walk before you can run, and to get to the point of becoming a HOU, you have to first be a MEM and the Raptors (I think) are on course to do that.

                  I think we’ll both agree that we have some good elements on the roster and that throwing the baby our with the bathwater isn’t the way to go. All I’m suggesting is that we give Ujiri a fair chance to see if he can get us on that list of yours, before labelling him a hack.

                • stretch bigman

                  Actually, I stand by putting GS and Chicago there. You asked me for the teams I feel have strong foundations. Having strong foundations don’t necessarily make them contenders now but I would still be content as a fan if I supported any of these teams. Is N.O. close to winning a championship or even making the playoffs consistently? Probably not, but I feel with Davis and Holiday as their core and another possible lottery pick on the way this year, they will have a core of players I would feel comfortable moving forward with from a fans perspective. Same goes for Chicago (Rose and Mirotic will be playing next year). GS is in the same boat to me as well. My whole argument was based not on winning a ring this year but building a team around the type of players, I feel can do this.

                • Ogi

                  I think that both JV and Ross could grow tremendously. Now obviously that remains to be seen, but I think Ross exceeded most people’s expectations with his play (especially recently) on both ends of the floor. I also don’t think JV’s poor play this season necessarily spells a dead end, Hard work can go a long way.
                  Also it took Indy a few seasons of working with their core and putting it to the test in the playoffs to get it to where it is now.
                  I just think its really too early to tell how effective our current core can be.

                • jjdynomite

                  Piss poor Raptor-skeptics like stretch bigman can pump up an unknown Eurobig like Mirotic and yet another magical return for the Swiss cheese knees of Derrick Rose, yet crap on DeMar, JV and Ross — who have actually played, if not excelled, in the NBA this season — for having 1st round exit written all over them. Sorry buddy, you are both a hater and a troll (troll = your sole existence is to piss off Raps fans) and truly should leave for another board with your illogical pap. The fact that you and FUXLAND are aligned philosophically should say it all.

                • Guest

                  Honest Question.

                  I’ve now seen Mirotic cited as someone who’s going to push the bulls over the top. What has he done that lots of people feel that way? I;m usually wary of anyone who’s never played a minute in the NBA having such an agreed upon impact.
                  Is this just another case of grass being greener on the other side? Or has he been DESTROYING the euroleague or something?

                  Side note: I get less ad less worried about Derrick Rose everyday. GAme predicated on athleticism…. two season ending injuries two years in a row… not a great jump shot….

                  He scares me about as much as DWill does anymore.

            • FLUXLAND

              this was the “multitude of other factors” I didn’t want to bring up.

              How about NYK winning 54 games last year?

              What about the ’10 Spurs getting tossed in the 1st round?

              Regular season records mean nada.

              • Ogi

                That isn’t much of an argument against regular season records. The ’10 Spurs were clearly an anomaly. That’s easily determined when you look at the Spurs’ historical performance in both the regular season and the playoffs. If we look at playoff performance, teams that do better in the season typically get farther in the playoffs. Not saying that this is proof that the Raps will do the same, but it also means that it isn’t a reason to assume that they won’t

                • FLUXLAND

                  OK… how about the Mavs cranking out 3 x 50 plus win seasons and getting bounced in the 1st round every time?

                  Any way you slice it, regular season (great or poor) records are zero indication of anything in the playoffs, I will agree to that. So, can we stop implying the Raptors record validates a positive “anything can happen” outcome? And the talk of ECFs and beating MIA or IND as if they are even in the same stratosphere as the Raps?

                • Ogi

                  One of those 50 win seasons got Dallas a 7th seed, which one would expect to get knocked out in the first round. Another season had them matched up with a Golden State team that was on a 16-5 run to end the season.
                  Either way that still doesn’t disprove that teams that play well during the season tend to play well during the playoffs, and if anything helps prove the point that “anything can happen” considering that dallas wins were expected but didn’t occur.
                  Beating MIA or IND though is a ridiculous expectation at this point.

                • FLUXLAND

                  We can go ahead and start nitpicking at all of it ..”one of those season” and seeding”/matchups.. but let’s keep the convo on the Raps.

                  A playoff inexperienced, non rebounding, non paint defending team is going to play well in the playoffs? Based on their record (in a clearly bizzaro year) implying they play well? Really? Tough sell, Ogi.

                  And no, it doesn’t “disprove that teams that play well during the season tend to play well during the playoffs”.. the implication was that it doesn’t mean they will play well, either. But considering the mentioned flaws this team suffers from, which one do you think is likely to happen?

                • Ogi

                  Right, but the only way to gain playoff experience is obviously to play in the playoffs. So giving them that experience is crucial. As for what’s likely to happen, it all really depends on how we close off the season and who our first round matchup is. In all likelihood even if we get past the first round, we lose to IND/MIA, the guys gain some experience, and we move from there. If we get demolished in the first round by a sub-par team, then we move from there. Either way we give it a shot and move based on the results.
                  And yes I think their post-gay record absolutely implies that they play well. Can they improve? Yes. How will that translate come play off time? We’ll see.

                • FLUXLAND

                  I don’t buy the whole “playoff experience” argument.. I am sure you can find examples of teams losing in the 1st round and it amounting to nothing the subsequent season.

                  Not to mention, playoff experience will not address the flaws I mentioned, while Rudy Gay actually helped us in those areas. You are right, we will see, but your entire premise is not based on any facts.. simply the belief positive outcomes, based on flawed history, are likely. And I’ve been watching the NBA for far too long to even come close to entertaining that kind of, forgive me, flawed thinking.

                • Ogi

                  But your premise isn’t based on facts either. The only facts you’ve mentioned work both for and against your argument. You simply believe negatives outcomes… Not to mention that if you “don’t believe the playoff experience argument” then you shouldn’t have mentioned it initially.
                  Also there are only three teams in the east with a chance of making the playoffs which have more rpg than the raptors. Indiana, Chicago, and Cleveland. So what facts?

                • FLUXLAND

                  Huh? I believe my facts lie in the “protect the paint/win the rebound battle” and play dominating defense notions. These are indisputable truths about winning in the playoffs, not some belief I have.

                  Rebounds in the regular season, or? And are you just going to ignore PIP and defense?

                  You can keep diluting what I am saying by bringing up current year statistics; none of that takes away from what I already told you: regular season record mean nothing, rebounds, protecting the paint and defense win in the playoffs. The Raptors are not scaring anyone in those areas, and your positive outcome outlook doesn’t change that.

                • Ogi

                  If regular season rebounds mean nothing then we absolutely have no facts to work with because this team hasn’t seen the post-season. Therefore going by your own logic you still have no facts. I’m not diluting anything.

                  If you want to have this discussion and base it on facts then we have to talk about the regular season because that’s the only sample that exists with this team. Otherwise according to your own guidelines you shouldn’t even be part of this conversation. I can also point out that we’re 7th in defensive rating. And I agree we need to work on points in the paint and paint defense, but there is no reason to assume that this core can’t improve that.

                • FLUXLAND

                  I believe I said current season. And indulge me and look up those numbers for those teams in the PO and regular season, tell me if you see a pattern.

                  More to the point, yes this team has not seen the post season. But if you have been following the NBA for any length of time you would know by in large, numbers regress in the POs. Are you seriosuly suggesting that the numbers in the areas we are discussing, will improve come the playoffs? And on that note, let’s entertain your 7th ranking… are you suggesting this will improve in the playoffs or, if you are willing to acknowledge regression, where do you think they would rank, while keeping in mind their ranking in the areas that win in the playoffs.

                  My arguments have far more facts, than your opinion and hope based improvement implications.

                • Ogi

                  Your argument is barely strung together, and not very well thought out. I continue to provide numbers based on the only sample we have, and you keep dismissing them based off of absolutely no concrete evidence. If numbers regress in the playoffs then they’ll regress for every team. Just another example of your “facts” which work both ways. Do me a favour and compare rebounds per game in the playoffs vs reg season. I did. The top ten teams are fairly consistent.

                  However it’s still natural that these ratings change because of the nature of the playoffs. You play one team many times and then move on to the next. Therefore it completely depends on the matchup, which is what I’ve already said. Nevertheless a defensive minded team that’s played that way throughout the season isn’t going to completely change that during playoff time.

                  My arguments aren’t hope based at all. I’m very aware that this team isn’t close to being a contender now, but I don’t think they have a weak core. They’ve already shown they can play. It all comes down to whether they’re able to improve, and that at this point is pure speculation.

                • FLUXLAND

                  Yours appears even less strung together, if not completely baseless, from over here.

                  I am dismissing them based on other factors i have repeatedly pointed out and you keep labeling as areas to improve (as if they will do so simply by the passing of time or entering the post season) and dismissing yourself as fundamental flaws that need to be address if the desired objective is to be obtained.

                  It’s very simple – I keep pointing out the flaws and you keep telling me anything can happen due to a flawed record. Anybody can play, but can you stop someone when it matter, can you get a rebound when it matters? And you think they don’t have a weak core? Interesting.

                • Ogi

                  What’s interesting is that when I tell you how your arguments are flawed, I explain it and give examples. You on the other hand just keep repeating the same thing even though it has no basis in reality.
                  Your three factors were 1. no playoff experience – which you yourself said you don’t believe in as a factor. So I think that goes to show who’s arguments are flawed
                  2. Rebounding based on your psychic powers which tell you they’ll get destroyed on rebounds by apparently any possible matchup team. Since using the only numbers we have is a big no-no… Great argument.
                  3. PIP – which I agree with you, but me saying that our big(s) will improve this area of the game isn’t a far stretch. Not by passing the time but by working on it, like every big in the history of the game has done.

                  Besides that you mentioned that another of the “multitude” of factors was that sometimes teams don’t perform as the record would suggest. But this doesn’t work for them or against them because sometimes they do and sometimes they don’t… Clearly another flawed argument.

                • FLUXLAND

                  Wait wait wait… when did I say playoff experience is not a factor? Please point this out and let me be clear that is simply not true.

                  Who said anything about getting destroyed? Either way, if you are not a top rebounding team, winning a series is next to impossible. Yes, using regular season numbers, in light of PO regression, is invalid.

                  PIP – we are talking about now and the current playoff run.

                  In the end, you don’t have any argument at all other than attempting to dismiss decades of playoff history that I keep bringing up, by saying “we don’t know/anything can happen”. And claiming that history has no basis in reality? HUUUH?

                • Ogi

                  No you’re the one that said anything can happen in the playoffs first…

                  “I don’t buy the whole “playoff experience” argument.. I am sure you can find examples of teams losing in the 1st round and it amounting to nothing the subsequent season.”

                  That is your quote.

                  You have no evidence that shows that we aren’t better at rebounding than many of our potential match ups.

                  You’re conveniently saying that with PIP we can talk about now, which is taboo for any stat that’s positive for the Raps. Again absolutely ridiculous. Also as i said PO regression is applied consistently so many of the ratings stay more or less consistent.

                  The only thing I’m dismissing is your attempts of trying to pass off your random sentences for history. Once again you haven’t actually brought up any real facts. I’ve already explained this.

                • FLUXLAND

                  Oh I’m sorry, you misunderstood.

                  I was saying simply playing in the playoffs doesn’t mean you’re a playoff team or player or that it will translate into future success. But surely teams that have been there AND actually won, can put that under their cap as an advantage over teams that have not played or won in the playoffs.

                  You are right, I have no evidence to say that we aren’t better, but how many of our potential matchups have more playoff experience and playoff evidence, that again is an advantage over us?

                  If they do stay consistent.. then where does that leave the Raps? Better or worse off?

                  I don’t see how you are taking “winning the rebound battle and PIP” as random sentences for history. I assume you have gone through those number for all playoff matchups in the past and noticed a FACTUAL pattern? I have also, repeatedly explained this.

                • Ogi

                  You’re right and I already conceded that we very well could lose in the first round, and that based on that performance we need to evaluate how to move forward.

                  Yes i used the top ten rebounding teams in the last few seasons and compared their playoff vs reg season rankings. It was fairly consistent.

                  I think if their play does stay consistent we have a very good chance of making the second round. Our only big losses post gay are against SA and LAC. Both elite west teams which we won’t have to worry about come playoff time. Based on how this team plays, I think they will bring their A game come playoff time and not collapse under the pressure. Either way realistically that will only get us as far as second round.

                • Guest

                  NO BRO.
                  You have clearly misunderstood. I thought I had foot in mouth disease but you just spew argumentative nonsense non stop. It’s hilarious. Keep going man… I wanna see how far you can go!

                • FLUXLAND

                  Reading is hard, I know. Especially when you’re reading what you don’t like.

                • What the

                  Now raptors fans you all hear what this man is asking us to do the man says don’t even entertain the thought of thinking “anything can happen ” wipe that thought from your mind he says cause nothing is going to happen Holeee Flux we are DOOOMED

              • what the

                calm down FLUX you worry too much.blah blah blah but but what about NY and 54 games?don’t worry about NY we gave them the cancer Barnie notice how they are winnig.next the Spur blah blah 2010 spur lost in the first round blah blah blah holeee guy KOmar just got voted in by coaches as an allstar and you looking for a chip already you got spoiled by KObe and are now expecting KOmar to give you your fix, here try some of the Kool-aid and relax

              • Guest

                Did you just cite the Spurs as a team you don’t want to emulate?
                The most consistently successful NBA team of the past 15 years?

                • FLUXLAND

                  Do you see how poor are your reading skills? Or are you just drinking early in the AM?

            • Joshua

              Two major players are gone from the core.
              How can you say the core is the same.
              You seem to forget about the bench.
              No team can win consistently without a good bench. That includes the playoffs.
              After the Gay trade the Raptors have a very good bench. The results. We can compete and
              win against the Western teams. Our record
              since the trade would put us in the playoffs
              in the West. The Heat or the Pacers need to have their A game or the Raptors beat them.
              Even with their A game it’s a battle.

        • FLUXLAND

          Bang on! I didn’t want go point by point like you did… the “foolish” line (ironic as it is to me) was enough to encapsulate the meat of the debate.

          And as much as I disliked the Bosh no1 option push for years…I would take his nightly 20/10 as better FA bait than DD’s All Star Reserve game, any day of the week.

        • What the

          No hate no hate ? this is some Tim W fuckin shit right there on Komar the allstar

          • FLUXLAND

            All Star RESERVE.. stop lying.

            • Ogi

              You do realize that the non-reserves are voted in by fans, while the reserves are voted in by actual coaches right? If anything calling him an all-star reserve helps build the case that he’s a quality player

              • FLUXLAND

                The same actual coaches that shunned players far more deserving, arguably? Meeh.

                • Ogi

                  I agree, but it still holds more merit than the fan opinion.

                • FLUXLAND

                  I dunno, I mean.. yes, they are voting them in, but there’s a lot of politics involved. Soo, merit shmerit.

                  You need to be able to play both sides of the ball to be considered an AS as far as I am concerned… kinda like the Nash argument, there’s just not enough there to convince me of the said merit.

                • Ogi

                  Yeah ideally that’s how all star selections should work, but all I’m saying is that pointing out that he was a reserve doesn’t really prove anything. Fans definitely don’t vote based on being able to play both sides of the ball. I’d say the coach opinion is probably the lesser of the two evils.

                • FLUXLAND

                  I just dislike the All Star (RESERVE) argument as some sort of verification of what he brings to the table. Grossly over valued, if you’re asking me.

                • Ogi

                  Yeah it is a pointless argument. I was just pointing out that “all-star reserve” shouldn’t carry the negative connotations that the word reserve carries.

                • FLUXLAND

                  I agree it’s pointless. But for those bringing up the All Star thing, they should acknowledge it’s a reserve spot, at that. Calling him an AS implies his game carries a certain transcending quality, if you will.

                • arsenalist

                  Can you please tell me how All-Star selections should work? It appears you hate everything about everything, so at this point I’m more interested in what solutions you have in mind.

                • FLUXLAND

                  Let the players decide, like they used to? I would think they know more about each others games that a coach with an agenda. You really think there’s an overwhelming majority of players that think his game is AS worthy?

                  Appearance can be misleading, and I am not going to be sorry for not taking your “let’s sugarcoat everything” approach. I am glad you’ve found the balance between not being overly optimistic and overly critical to appease your reading masses , but you’re still a blind optimist at heart – “ugly wins sign of a good team”.

                • arsenalist

                  Players? And you think that’s a better idea that letting the coaches vote? You are naive if you think biases wouldn’t come into play there much more than if the coaches did it. I thought you might say have it done by the media ala ROY/MVP etc., even that would’ve made more sense.

                  Ugly wins are a sign of a good team. Eeking out a 2-point win on the road is equally as impressive as a 20-point blowout at home. Winning close-games tells you a helluva lot more about how the team performs in the clutch than a comfortable home win.

                  Honestly man, I’m not even sure what you’re arguing about anymore. When this team sucked under BC, I called it out every single night. Now that they’re doing well, I’m giving them credit. What is so wrong with that? Should every article be titled, “Raptors win, but look at all this other shit that’s wrong with this fucking team”?

                • FLUXLAND

                  The media? Jah, man.. the same media that voted a pylon a two time MVP? Riiiight. I may be naive, but I think the players could sort it out better amongst themselves then being at the mercy of a bunch of people with agendas and who couldn’t dribble if their life depended on it.

                  Ugly wins are sign of a good team, if said team is actually good and having an off night, yet still securing a win. Not the same thing and clearly pending your definition of a good team. Same argument as I am having above – their record and defensive ranking doesn’t change the fact they get abused in the paint and the rebounding sux..good team and all that, right.

                  Every single night? I am not going to argue with you when your anti BC stance commenced and it really doesn’t matter. If anything, currently, you’re a MU supporter and I am not; the same position we were in at the beginning of the BC era, IIRC. No need for either of us to apologize for that.

                  No, no it shouldn’t be titled that. C’mon Arse, appeasing me should be/is the last of your concerns. Like I said, over the years your writing has improved to the point where the criticism is veiled and surrounded with positive statements… but that doesn’t mean I am detracting from my stance..the one you perceive as “hating everything about everything”, simply because I am not willing to get behind the current years developments, as much as you are.

                • arsenalist

                  “currently, you’re a MU supporter and I am not”

                  I’m not a supporter of MU. I’m giving the guy a fair chance. My only loyalty is to the idea of supporting your local NBA club. I lost faith in BC the day he signed Kapono, I’m not sure Ujiri has done anything remotely close to suggest that he has the wrong view on things. I’m not sure you can make a case that we should condemn Ujiri already, as there’s just no evidence that he’s brought the franchise down the wrong path (maybe I’m missing something).

                • FLUXLAND

                  “I do have confidence in Ujiri” – this and a few other statements since his signing have led me to the supporter claim. If that was a giant leap on my end, my bad. But it really doesn’t seem that far of a stretch.

                  I think you very well know that is my only loyalty as well, and a case cannot be made either way, can it?

                  We only have what has transpired thus far to go on, and that doesn’t mean much at this point, at least not to all of us. In the meantime, I think it is fair to speculate/question and not assume only good things are coming.

                • arsenalist

                  “We only have what has transpired thus far to go on, and that doesn’t mean much at this point”

                  So just how can you be against him already????

                  Also, I have confidence in him because every trade he’s made thus far has worked out. Surely, that should be enough to at least give him a chance rather than be a critic for the sake of it?

                • FLUXLAND

                  OK.. so the trades have “worked out” due to his wisdom and foresight, according to you? In turn you’re saying he didn’t trade to tank and this is his vision of a chip team?

                  Being a skeptic, you mean. And yes, his record allows as much, if not more. There is nothing here to support anything. Sheeeet, I could even argue his inability to deal with Gay by trading him for pieces is just a sign of a bad GM.

                  Trading Melo and Gay doesn’t make you someone that knows how to build a chip team… just a guy that can come in a facilitate transactions for ownership to the NBA offices.

                • arsenalist

                  First para of your comment – read the first para of the article

                  Second para of your comment – no comment on suggesting that $13M gained in cap space + Patterson + Expiring contracts in Salmons and Vasquez is a bad deal

                  Third para of your comment – you’re contradicting yourself. You just said in another comment that it’s too early to pass judgement on Ujiri since nothing much has transpired, but now you’re casting the absolute-most negative light on his transactions. Inherent bias much?

                • FLUXLAND

                  The first para doesn’t answer the question, you are being elusive. Your answer would be more indicative of your views on MU… I find it slightly disturbing you’re playing the “wait and see” card..seems very MU like.

                  Cap space is one thing, what you do with it is what really matters, as we both know.

                  I said it cannot be made either way, but how does that make my suggestion less valid in light of all the moves he’s currently made? That’s inherent bias? HUH? I am not assuming anything, he made those transactions. So, I am not to have an opinion, however incomprehensible to you? Are you disputing he’s made moves that can be viewed as divestment, at best?

                • arsenalist

                  Oh dear, you really have lost it.

                  You find it disturbing that I play the “wait and see” game? Would you rather me jump to conclusions? Again, you’re basically hating for the sake of hating, maybe you’re trying to live up to some sort of reputation? Seems like you’re trying way too hard. At the expense of repeating myself, I already stated that he met with some “dumb luck” (It’s in the title of the article, FFS), so I’m not sure what you’re trying to get me to say. Besides, that’s pure speculation anyway, since for all we know, he maybe liked Patterson from the start.

                  The thing with cap space is, Flux, is that you need to have it to do something with it. The first step is getting that cap space, the second is using it. Ujiri did well to get that cap space. Admit to that, admit it. Judge him after he uses it, cool?

                  All the major moves he’s made have had positive outcomes. Admit to that, admit it, and give due credit.

                  I’ll let you have the last word in this “debate”, because clearly we’re not getting anywhere. I’ll maintain my opinion that you essentially hate everything about everything. Next time you watch a Raptors game, and if they happen to be winning, try to enjoy it instead of trying to suppress your feelings. When they do exit in the first round of the playoffs, remember that that’s progress. As you said, you put ATL, MEM, and CHI, despite their multiple first-round exits, all well above the Raptors, so surely a first-round exit can’t be that terrible of an outcome.

                • FLUXLAND

                  Sorry, just don’t respect the whole “i have no opinion until xyz happens”. You’re not putting your life on the line here, just state on opinion based on the information you have. Is that difficult for you? What are you scared of? What do you think he was doing? Tanking or building a chip team?

                  Cap space – I dunno, but you must be one of those fans that think moving contracts in the NBA, especially one’s belonging to the Raptors, is nothing short of a miracle. Oh lala MU got cap space …*yaaawnn*. It’s like you’re asking me to give credit to the Starbucks employee for pouring into the right size cup. Impressive? To you, I suppose.

                  Have had positive outcomes – in the context of w/l – yes. In the context of (steps to) building a contender? You tell me.

                  That depends on how that exit transpires. ATL MEM and CHI have had more than 1st round exits. And based on talent alone, I don’t know why you are grouping those teams with the Raptors. It’s not even close.

                • arsenalist

                  Here’s an opinion: I’m comfortable with the current direction of the team and feel no need to preemptively strike against Masai Ujiri.

                • FLUXLAND

                  LOLOLOLLOOL Arse, c’mon… you don’t see how that is very MU like.. unwilling to answer a direct question. Are you “evaluating”, like MU?

                  What I was trying to get at is that you can’t have it both ways. Either he pulled the move to tank – in which case he failed. Or he did it as the next move towards the chip – in which case the question becomes what is he doing?

                  Both scenarios allow for examination of his tactics and there is no reason to wait for anything.

                  And if you are going wait… what are you waiting for? To see what he does this summer? Is that when you will form an opinion on him? Maybe that will help.. at what point do you begin an assessment of his moves and formulate an opinion? When his tenure with the Raptors is done?

                • arsenalist

                  I’ve already answered every single point either in the article or in the comments. Debating is willing to change ones view, and you’ve come to the table with some off-base ideology that you yourself can’t articulate, thus this conversation is over.

                • FLUXLAND

                  Willing to change their view if the opposing argument is convincing enough. Wait and see is not an argument.

                  I am articulating fine..I fact, I am asking direct questions now. You are being evasive and running away.

                  This conversation is over? Please don’t insult me, I realize you don’t like me.. but you’re above that, I would hope. You could have easily said you have nothing else to say.

                • Guest

                  Why does MU need to enlighten you about the direction of the Toronto Raptors? I want him to keep quiet. That’s good management.

                  Also. I just said it above but their’s more than two options as to the trades he made. That whole middle ground that the majority of the successful world operates from.

                • FLUXLAND

                  Oh, so it’s about what you want? I see.

                  Yeah, most. That’s why there’s only one Champion every year..and guess what? Those teams don’t need to keep quiet about anything. No one is asking for a detailed point by point structure.. a basic blueprint would be nice.

                  “Evaluating” is not a blueprint.

                • Guest

                  Maybe he wasn’t tanking or building a chip team. Maybe he was making a move that would improve the team (through chemistry, through improved back ups, addition by subtraction, or even by losing and getting a better draft pick).
                  You don’t rise to the top of your profession seeing the world in black and white. There’s more than column a and column b bro.

                • Guest

                  He’s a Lakers fan. I don;t know why you’re arguing.

                  Based on the multitude of Lakers fans I’ve met throughout my life, I can tell you he likely picked them because they were winning, and has no conception of patience and building a team. He’s a coward who’s afraid to cheer for the unknown, because he was always scared of cheering for a team that wasn;t winning. That’s why this wait and see approach is so wrong for him, but theres no point arguing with a child.

                  Whats unfortunate about everything is the tank/don';t tank debate has gotten so blown out of proportion. I never wanted to tank, because I always had confidence that many of these players could grow (probably more confidence than the tankers)… Not being a fan of tanking is not saying this team is legit as currently constructed. They are, however, MUCH improved based on a year ago. While some would call that mediocrity, I would say 12 months ago was mediocrity.

                  At the same time, being pro tank doesn;t have to mean you hate everything about this team, it means you believe that the players won;’t grow enough, and starting over would be the best option. Essentially its a disagreement over the potential future growth of the plays on this team. As both sides have eventually pointed out, both can potentially be successful strategies.

                  For every OKC there is Cleveland and for every Indians there is Milwuakee. The beauty of sports is the unknown, and the ride just may be the most important part.

                • FLUXLAND

                  Oh so now we are getting to it.. you are anti tank.

                  And now I am supposed to be surprised you’re running around attacking me without countering any points with facts other than your “i have confidence in these players growing”.. newsflash.. that’s just your baseless non factual opinion.

                • Ogi

                  I just don’t get why you refer to waiting and seeing as some kind of strategy. Isn’t it logical to let some time pass after a change is made in order to observe the effect? You can’t plan your next move until you know where you’re at.

                • FLUXLAND

                  Thing is, if this core gets in the playoffs… it handcuffs him from moving anyone. The fans will have a conniption.

                  And wait for what? Is this a chip core? What do you need to find out about them, that you don’t already know?

                • Ogi

                  Find out how they perform in the post season.. this core has two sophomores so there’s definitely a lot to find out.
                  Also it absolutely doesn’t handcuff him. That’s just ridiculous. Maybe it stops him from completely dismantling it, but there really is no reason that he should at this point.

                • FLUXLAND

                  I didn’t explain that well.. you’re right.. everyone is movable. My point was is that he will have a tough time with the fanbase because this will be the bunch that got the Raptors into the playoffs.

                  I don’t want to go back in circles.. I realize you see this as a strong core and that’s where we disagree – hence, you see no reason, and I do.

                • Milesboyer

                  I get it, you’re one of those – “the whole world is wrong and I’m right” kind of guys. Good luck with that, it’ll get you far in life.

                • What the

                  ‘let the players decide” I wonder what James Harden and some of the other top player would say about the allstar name KOmar and “Batman” Kyle who will be paid this summer by the Raptors come hell or high water, and there boy and girls we have our Robin KOmar and Batman Kyle …Amiir the Glue guy ,TR 31 the Plane and Val will grow up in 5 years and be called The Stopper and Casey is called Teacher and you all know who they say MU is already

                • What the

                  So that means BC was? no don’t tell
                  PS batman and robin will be allstars next year playing for this team and become the transthingy you guys are looking for so sit back and taste and see that the Kool-Aid is good KOmar is scoring 30 points like its going outta style Flight 31 landed in Area 51 the other day what else could you ask for drink the Kool-Aid and watch BCs babies grow infront of your eyes and become STARS

                • stretch bigman

                  Agreed on that point.

                • what the

                  IS THAT! what you come back with FLUX? come on give the man some thing better than that .and Flux, KOmar allstar status is good for 1 year and he will renew it next season the coaches are a bunch of liers because according to your friend Nilanka15 and a few others KOmar don’t play DEE can’t play DEE can’t dribble blah blah, but a bunch of these coaches got together and said lets make KOmar an allstar ofcourse with the blessing of the Mesiah MU.
                  am i right Flux?

            • WHAT THE

              don’t worry KOmar will be changing his # from 10 to #8 do you want me to save you a jersey in 2016 when you come to the Allstar game and please don’t forget your passport FLUX or you can’t get pass the border and you wouldn’t want to be left behind like JO. and end up not seeing KOmar take over the mantle from the old man and your hero KObe. Flux it’s call changing of the guards lo

          • stretch bigman

            Once again. Not Tim W.

            And I’m talking basketball homey. What are you sayin………other than nothing.

        • arsenalist

          Do you even know what site you’re on? We were the biggest BC critics out there. Nobody, me or any other writer, agreed on BC’s system of patching up problems. If you’re comparing BC’s quick-fire-quick-fix approach to MU’s lets-wait-and-see one, then I think you’re misreading the situation.

          Nobody should ever blindly trust anyone, and nobody here is either. I didn’t trust BC blindly (it appears you did and got burned?) and I’m not trusting Ujiri blindly. I’m simply giving him the leeway he deserves at this point in his Raptors tenure.

        • ItsAboutFun

          “it seems to me on this site that recently if you are not fully on the bandwagon you are not a ‘true fan’.”

          haha, surely Tim W style whine. whaaaaaa, I’m misunderstood, and y’all just aren’t realistic

      • ibleedpurple

        One could argue that Bledsoe might consider leaving simply because Dragic is a ball dominant guard. If you’ve seen even a single Suns game you’ll see that Dragic literally needs the ball in his hands all the time to function offensively. Yes the Suns have had great success this season but Bledsoe is a PG who needs the ball to be effective. One of those two guys is going to get shipped. The question becomes which one?

        • stretch bigman

          Maybe, but at the start of the season when they were playing together, they both looked great.

    • What the

      Kids cover your eyes, Fuck off Tim W .”Komar couldn’t hold Bosh’s jock” you are full of shit .First thing Komar don’t need to be beacan for anything just play ball and let the GM do his job.

      • FLUXLAND

        Be as sheep, listen to our Savior and keep you mouth shut? GTFOH, just drink you Kool Aid and stare at your hero All Star Reserve wallpaper, Kim Jong.

      • stretch bigman

        This is not Tim W.

        And yes Demar couldn’t hold Bosh’s jock strap on any level….stats, accomplishments, allstar appearances, all-nba teams. whatever measurement you care to use. Even long range 2 point jumpers for crying out loud!

        I’m talking ball, not swearing or acting like a fool. Debate this (Bosh vs Demar) if you wish but you’d be wasting your time. The numbers don’t lie.

    • arsenalist

      These are all fair points.

      > Re: Lowry contract

      In itself, $6.5M is not enough. But consider a S&T trade scenario as well when talking about a potential Lowry exit. Also consider that the Raptors will have cap space where they may only need to fill one or two spots with that space.

      > Re: Bledsoe

      If you are concerned about losing Lowry for nothing, then you should acknowledge that the Suns are in the same position with Bledsoe. One can’t be an issue/possibility, without the other.

      > Re: DeRozan lure

      Bosh brought over Hedo Turkoglu. DeRozan, combined with the Leiweke/Ujiri, are already a more attractive proposition than Bosh/Colangelo.

      > Re: College PGs

      All the PGs I listed are projected to go where the Raptors will draft.

      > Re: New CBA / trades

      Moot point. The basics of salary matching are the primary constraint in making trades, that hasn’t changed. The luxury-tax/repeater-penalties are an issue, but that should facilitate trade making as much as it hampers it. Totally depends on your situation.

      • stretch bigman

        Lowry is an unrestricted free agent. Bledsoe is restricted. Big difference there.

        Bosh brought over Turks? Are you kidding me? That was all Colangelo and Fruitman. You think in the offseason Bosh ran to Colangelo and said get me Turks! Come on man. How can you ‘combine’ Demar with Lieweke/Masai as a unit and then lump Bosh in with BC. You know he left on his own volition because BC couldn’t build a team to save his life (and to play with Wade and Lebron of course). And even if you are doing that neither combo has attracted much of anything so once again, I’m calling out the gigantic leap of unproven faith.

        – Ennis is projected to go in the 20’s? Are you making this up as you go along? Have you even seen Carson or Micic play? Not saying live but even on tv or stream any of their games?

        • arsenalist

          Raptors tender QO to Bledsoe, PHX chooses not to match. S&T ensues. Not hard to imagine. I’m only giving you one possibility of converting Lowry into something, the point isn’t necessarily only about Bledsoe.

          Bosh didn’t obviously recruit Turk. But at the time Turk was signed, Bosh was the attraction that was supposed to lure FAs over. “Hey Turk, come to Toronto, we’ll give you all this money and you’ll have a shot of contending with Chris Bosh”. DeRozan is in the same position at this point. It’s very easily to lump Leiweke/Ujiri/DeRozan and Bosh/BC as they’re the ones that represent the franchise from an outsider perspective.

          Yeah, my bad on Ennis. Read DX wrong. On YouTube, twice on TV.

          • leftovercrack

            Actually, Ennis was the flavor of the day, especially with that last-minute miracle shot, but Syracuse has lost 4 of their past 5 games and Ennis’ numbers are fairly pedestrian. I could see him falling

  • Roarque

    Regarding Bryan Colangelo as a GM I have to point out that his many good moves were overshadowed by his stubbornness to admit errors. It takes a good leader to surround himself with smart advisors and then to take their advice. I assume that Sam Mitchell for one told Brian how he wanted to coach Andrea Bargnani into greatness or get rid of him and I assume that BC not only didn’t listen but fired Smitch when he challenged the wisdom of rewarding indifference to coaching with 35 minutes/game.
    To my mind that doesn’t change BC’s skill in assembling the core of the current team. To a man the starters were BC’s acquisitions.
    Now if only BC had acquired managers beneath him who he trusted enough to take their advice. It’s all about management skills – and therein lies Bryan’s weakness

    • stretch bigman

      And the head coach.

      Building around a BC team terrifies me.

      • WHAT THE

        my friend everybody stays Casey,BCs starting five and the cheerleaders.batman will be sign to go along with Komar and a bench that can out score any team 2nd unit
        Next season we will have two Allstars in NY yes folks two Allstars ,batman and robin and haters want to blow it up.WELL IT AIN’T GONNA HAPPEN
        BC is still running things he just didn’t like this running snot nose kid from CALIFORNIA coming in here blah blah you got to trade Barnie blah blah we gonna make money blah blah I mean sand loads blah blah so BC and pride decide to leave but not before bringing in MU to take over his baby, and now his baby is starting to walk one IS an ALLSTAR name KOmar.

  • Rap fan 2

    The Raptors have made some improvements from last year, especially defensively. They can get even better here. With Masai, I think he’s got an eye to break down a players talent/skill attributes. He probably has some talent key scale card or player skill formula(s) that he uses to evaluate talent. I see him bringing in more players with qualities that include hard nose, gritty, relentless, high motor, passionate defender, effecient scoring, unselfish, team player, athletic, high basketball IQ, coachable, self-motivated. Along with improvements defensively they need to keep improving on the offensive side as well. They have to keep increasing the differential between what they score each game and what their opponents can score on them. Defense is key. They need to keep solidifying their defense.

  • Ellis

    Have to admit I previously wasn’t a fan of Derozan but his progress this year has really impressed me. I still don’t think he’s a franchise talent but with the right supporting cast he is definitely an all star. Gotta love his humility and work ethic too. His latest performance against the warriors was superb. Not sure I agree with the point that he’ll attract talent to Toronto by himself, but that’s certainly nothing against him and the list of players who would isn’t long in my mind.

    • Rap fan 2

      Yeah, I love Demar’s work ethic too. He was like that from day one. Also, love that he is humble. Very few players come into the league a superstar. It takes relentless practice and honing of your skills to become a great player. Even MJ says it took him some time to learn at the NBA level. What set MJ apart from most players besides his natural born athleticism was his super competitativeness. He was absolutely passionate about beating everyone he was up against. Any edge he can come up with. He says he’ll even try to beat up his opponents emotionally and mentally. Kobe has that same kind of mindset. Demar needs to develop that killer instinct too to get to that next level. Watch some of Michael Jordan tapes!! It all starts during practice.

  • Regina Rap Fan

    to me its pretty obvious MU was trying to tank or “develop players” since he did almost trade Lowry soon after the Rudy trade. Everyone can thank that NY owner we are in this situation :)

  • webfeat

    Ujiri makes “win-win” trades. Both the Bargnani and Rudy Gay trades exemplify trades that work no matter which way the wind blows. He discards poor contracts and adds assets. In the case of the Rudy Gay trade, he wins whether the Raptors go into a nose dive (woo, tank!) or treads water/skyrockets (assets like restricted 2Pat, GV, cheap buyout a la Salmons). I’m sure if Ujiri felt the Raps were not contenders for the Atlantic division title, he would have found a way to trade KLo and maybe even DD to rebuilt for the future.

    He’s patient, smart and doesn’t make mistakes (so far). He’s a steady guy and he’ll create stability for the team (hasn’t fired Casey, yet!).

  • Frazzle.

    Totally agree.

  • ItsAboutFun

    hahahaha, Fuxhand dominated the board again, despite getting owned over and over again, constantly getting his shit handed back to him. It was beautiful until it got boring. His shtick doesn’t change.

    • FLUXLAND

      Please. I got f all handed back to me… people living in the la la land talking about mediocrity is not going to happen.

      • Guest

        You got served son. The person who said it was their FIRST TIME ON HERE read all the posts and pointed out how they weren’t even thought out and you just argue to argue. Childish.

        Even if you have an intelligent point to make, it gets lost in your ranting. Take a breath. Express yourself with coherency.

        • FLUXLAND

          Maybe they just need to gain some reading comprehension. Perhaps if they were here reading my comments more than just the first time around, they would get a better sense of my position, instead of reading selectively.

          And of course if they are on the same side of the argument as the person i am debating, they would claim my points are invalid.

          Served? Please… show me where, son. It never happened, but you keep telling yourself it did.

  • Messiah Ujiri

    I think it’s possible that MU truly believed he was improving the team in the short term when he made the trade. Gay’s ill effect on this team and on Demar were well documented at the time. Rumors of trading Lowry also don’t imply that MU intended to tank the season (although now it’s clear that it would have certainly crippled this team). I think he was merely exploring the idea to move an asset at the height of its value and would have only pulled the trigger if a team was willing to meet his high demands. He also now has a better idea of what Lowry’s value will be in the free agent market as a result.