September 13 is approaching. That is the date to watch for Raptors trades. The 'Everything Raptors' thread about the off season grades is garbage until the season starts - offseason ain't over people.
Two possible trades I expect to happen both involve TOR-CHA:
1) CHA gets Calderon and Evans / TOR gets Dampier and Augustine.
I don't expect this one to happen because it doesn't save CHA much money and they are $7.5M over the cap which means a $7.5M luxury tax hit. It also leaves clears the glut at PG and C but leaves them with a glut at PF and thin at SG and SF after Jackson and Wallace.
CHA gets Calderon, Dunleavy, Dorsey
IND gets Diaw, Evans, Banks
TOR gets Ford, Dampier, Augustine
CHA gets PG they want, depth at SF/SG, and Dorsey would most likely be waived for a savings of about $5M in salary, $5M in luxury tax and can make a trade towards the deadline to get under the cap.
IND gets front court depth and a back up PG to replace Ford who they want rid of so bad they offered to buy him out (but at a discount).
TOR gets rid of Calderon's contract (not Calderon the player), replaces 2 back up PG's who are now expiring contracts, and cuts Dampier and his $13M contract. This creates much flexibility for the Raptors and, IMO, accelerates their rebuilding by a couple of seasons as they now have $7M in cap space, $15.4M in expiring contracts, $14.5M in TPE, 2 first round draft picks for 2011, and only $37.5M in salaries for next season ($29.6 if Barbosa opted out).
As for the upcoming season, Dampier could be re-signed after 30 days and the Raps could offer more money than any team that may want him. No he is not going to make the Raps title contenders but he is a solid NBA C with a big body and defensive presence - which is what they need. Plus at the trade deadline they could trade him to a contender looking for a big body to bang with a team like the Lakers or Celtics. Think draft picks or young player.
If the Raps are going to suck as bad as many believe, as long as they work hard, learn, and are at least entertaining to watch, I can live with that. WHY? Because their draft pick will be high and they can draft a young PG/SF/C.
Finally, whatever hole the draft does not plug, they have cap space, free agency, and trade to make a contender out of the team.
YES I SAID CONTENDER. WHY?
The problem with the RAPS roster is they don't have players that are starters on the upper tier teams in the league. They have good players who are role players on good teams - that is not intended as a slight. They also have promising, young players in DD, Weems, Johnson, Davis (especially Davis!). Essentially the Raps have awesome role players and an awesome bench - but lack the starters.
If the Raps had JJ, Kleiza, and Johnson as back ups to say a S. Curry/B. Jennings, Jeff Green/Iguodala, or Al Horford/Marc Gasol to go along with DD (if he continues to develop) and Bargnani then that would be a really good, young team.
But, unfortunately, they don't which is why getting (and cutting) Dampier and losing Calderon's contract will be the fastest route to rebuilding for the Raptors.