On the second point, let's wait until he is over and actually playing in NBA games before we unequivocally state what it is that he is bringing to Toronto.
The other point that people like Grange (even though his hackey, faux morally superior, leftie leanings are on full display), DNB and others are alluding to (that I and others here raised before the draft) is that this reaction was entirely predictable. Not every Raptor fan is a hardcore draft junkie. Most never heard of this guy and have never seen him play. What they understand is that he measures out a lot like a certain current Raptor and they just shake their heads and say, 'here we go again'. The ghosts of Bargnani, Araujo, et al. are going to haunt this kid. When, or if, he gets to the NBA, one bad game and he is going to get ripped to pieces.
It's fine to say that the right pick isn't the popular one (I have no idea since I've never seen this guy play) but this is a 22-win team with declining attendance that is facing a lockout and looks to be bad for a very long time. There are two ways to quickly become irrelevant as a business: put out a crappy product and thumb your nose in your customers' collective face. The Raptors need to tread carefully.
All players at the draft are subject to skepticism. However, many people close to the situation wondered where JV would be without the buyout situation. He was a player that was going to shoot up regardless while both Kemba and Knight shot down and they're ready to play this coming season. What does that tell you about Jonas (who was rated higher than Enes in some boards)? Yes, Araujo was painful and Andrea is still a pain for me. But to paint every white European in the same light is unfair.
“The saving of our world from pending doom will come, not through the complacent adjustment of the conforming majority, but through the creative maladjustment of a nonconforming minority.” - Martin Luther King
My feeling, though, is if you aren't a fan who's very knowledgeable, then why the hell do you think you know better than the guy running the team with two Executive of the Year awards? I think what's wrong is that uninformed people don't seem to understand they don't know anything. And apparently aren't afraid of looking stupid.
That's not to say you can't have legitimate concerns about drafting him, but most of the people that seem to HATE the pick simply have no idea what they're talking about, and it's unfortunate that they believe they need to voice their opinion. Generally if I'm not informed about something, I don't spout off about it pretending like I do.
(Keep in mind, this is not directed at you.)
Did you read the comment to which I replied? Disagreeing with me is hardly an issue - people do it frequently and I am happy to exchange views. Your questioning of my comment after watching the Euro-centric bashing today is ridiculous.
Actually, no you are not a bigot because your criticisms are basketball based - lack of size, years away from contributing - and are valid.
What I would suggest you do is look through the posts today and see how many people are commenting, directly or indirectly, on nothing more than his birthplace, upbringing, and skin colour. The guy is about as different from Bargnani as one can get yet he is getting crucified before ever showing up here - the only similarity is the high percentage from the charity stripe.
Is he a franchise centre? I don't know but there are plenty of people with more experience and expertise than myself (outside the Raptors organization) who seem to think so. Many have claimed he could be the top player from this draft when it is all said and done.
As for the getting burned on international bigs, here is the draft history of the Raps:
Getting burned on international bigs? You call drafting Bargnani getting burned? While he was #1 he is still the second best in the top 5 and top 5 of the entire draft that year - hardly a burn despite his flaws. You call drafting Bavcic and Slokar busts at 56 and 58? Seriously - 56 and 58? Araujo was a bust, no doubt, and also picked by one of the worst GM's ever, yet managed to return Kris Humphries in a subsequent trade by BC. Ukic was not an NBA player but he filled a role as a third stringer and returned value in a trade by BC.
So with those international draft picks out of the way, besides Araujo, we are left with one international draft pick that truly was a bust and that was in 1999. Personally, the Araujo fiasco that was Babcock should be deleted from all Raptors fans.
Now what about our American draft picks - specifically bigs. Camby? 2 years and gone. Bradley? Up there with Kapano in horrible contracts. Charlie V? UConn flavoured Bargnani. Davis? Awesome.
The draft is a crap shoot. Remember how highly all these guys are thought of today and look at where draft picks of 1 and 2 years ago are today in people's perceptions. Where they are from should be little more than a footnote. Many fans are making it the whole story and that is the problem.
That is not even paying attention to guards or wings.
The point is this: the hit ratio is much better with proven NCAA talent. Hoffa sweetness Marcus Fizer Diogu are all tweeners and none of the good GM's would touch them. Also we are talking about a number 5 pick some of those guys mentioned are not even lottery players....
Elite teams have at most 1 or 2 NON-NCAA proven guys in their 8 man rotation. Its a fact the Bulls lakers Mavs OKC portland Boston Miami on and on....
Champions Detroit Chicago Spurs Miami Lakers ... it is a fact (and yes I know kobe did not play in NCAA - he is a freakish exception).
"I may be wrong ... but I doubt it"
Raptors history with drafting Euro bigs has not been positive one. And while other teams have had success, the Raps have not. Almost any player in any draft is a risk, but I think its pretty clear this isn't the type of risk a large segment of the Raptors fan base (knowledgeable or not) wanted the organization to take.
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