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Thread: Boston Globe: Colangelo on a mission to rebuild the Raptors

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    Default Boston Globe: Colangelo on a mission to rebuild the Raptors

    There are a few statements in here that many around here would certainly poke holes in - and rightfully so. But overall a decent article and surprising it was written by Boston Globe versus Toronto Star, Sun, or National Post.


    Bryan Colangelo hardly uttered a word when Chris Bosh left the Raptors for the Heat in the summer of 2010. The Toronto general manager did not follow the lead of Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert, who lambasted LeBron James for his “Decision’’ to join Bosh and Dwyane Wade in Miami.

    Colangelo instead has decided to rebuild, hopefully using the draw of Toronto as a premier international city and plenty of salary cap space to lure a major free agent to Canada. That’s the plan, and until it pans out, the Raptors will try to entertain their rather diverse and neophyte fan base with young talent and the promise of better days.

    The Raptors looked green and lacked chemistry in their two preseason games against the Celtics, but they rallied to win the season opener against the Cavaliers, perhaps an indication that they won’t be the worst of the Eastern Conference’s lottery-bound teams.


    The Raptors have drafted their share of talent in Damon Stoudamire, Marcus Camby, Vince Carter, Tracy McGrady, and Bosh, but they haven’t been able to keep any of them long-term. They are still searching for an identity, and Colangelo feels they are close, despite the constant rebuilding.

    “Obviously when I first got to Toronto [in 2006], I felt like the roster needed to be overhauled and we did that,’’ said Colangelo, the son of former Phoenix executive Jerry Colangelo. “And having a centerpiece like Chris made it easy to kind of get competitive quickly and that’s what happened.

    “We went from 27 wins to 47 wins and made it back to the playoffs for the first time in five years. The following years didn’t work out so well because although we tried to bridge the gap with additional pieces, it just didn’t seem to come together to the extent that we were competitive enough.’’

    The Raptors’ win total decreased the next two seasons and Colangelo couldn’t surround Bosh with a supporting cast good enough to compete with elite teams in the Eastern Conference. Then they missed the playoffs in 2009-10 by one game after Bosh missed the final week with a facial fracture.

    Bosh’s free agency was obviously overshadowed by that of James, but it became apparent near the end of the season that returning to Toronto was less likely. And he joined Wade in Miami a day before LeBron made his “Decision.’’

    “The catalyst of the rebuild was obviously Chris making the decision to leave,’’ Colangelo said. “And it was a perfect reason or segue to start this process.’’

    Colangelo showed no reluctance in giving Bosh the benefit of a sixth contract year in Miami and executing a sign-and-trade to help replenish the Raptors’ roster. They received two first-round picks and a trade exception from the Heat. Toronto used the first pick on Lithuanian standout center Jonas Valanciunas, who opted to spend another season overseas.

    The Raptors are banking that former No. 1 pick Andrea Bargnani, along with athletic shooting guard DeMar DeRozan and forward Ed Davis will develop in new coach Dwane Casey’s defensive-minded system. The Raptors have had no trouble scoring points but haven’t stopped anyone for years, even with Bosh.

    Colangelo fired the friendly but overwhelmed Jay Triano to take a chance on Casey, whose first head coaching stint ended rather unfairly five years ago in Minnesota.

    Casey was the de facto defensive coordinator with the Mavericks, and his system contained James and Bosh in last year’s NBA Finals.

    “You can see it, watching it every day, you can see that things are starting to change,’’ Colangelo said. “It feels different. There is a little bit of a bend toward defense, obviously. We’re working on laying the foundation for the ramp-up and the ramp-up probably begins in earnest next year.’’

    That’s when Valanciunas will arrive in Canada along with another projected lottery pick, and Toronto will have an estimated $20 million to spend on free agents when Leandro Barbosa comes off the books in the summer. So Colangelo will try to sell a major free agent on Toronto, something that has yet to be accomplished in the franchise’s 16 years.

    Waiting for all that, said Colangelo, “is really the only thing to do right now. It’s a deep draft and we’re going to get a quality player coming in. I really feel like we’re poised well for the future - just maybe a couple of bumps in the road here over the next four months.’’


    Why Toronto has never attracted a major free agent is puzzling. The city is considered one of the best in the world for quality of life, it’s a short flight from the East Coast cities, and the Air Canada Centre is one of the league’s most sparkling arenas. But there remains a stigma to playing in Canada - that you’re playing in front of hockey-crazed crowds that view basketball as more of a novelty.

    Bosh had never indicated earlier that he would leave Toronto.

    “Chris left in what I would call a very unique set of circumstances,’’ Colangelo said. “It was a free agent frenzy. It was an unprecedented moment in this type of activity and he ended up going to be part of a rock-and-roll band in Miami. And it’s probably a decision nine out of 10 guys would make. And Chris again probably felt like that was the best thing for him.

    “I’ll be honest with you, we were in a different set of circumstances not being able to do a whole lot for him because he never told us that he was going to be leaving or wanted out. He always made the impression very known and very public that he liked Toronto a lot and wanted to stay.’’

    Colangelo did not hide his belief that Bosh is not an elite player or franchise cornerstone.

    “Even if there was an open market similar to what’s gone on with [Carmelo Anthony] last year and Chris Paul this year and Dwight Howard, he’s not that caliber of player,’’ the general manager said. “It’s just that simple.

    “I never had an opportunity to move him for the kind of haul that some of these other deals are producing. But for us to end up with a couple of first-round picks, it was a nice way to segue toward the future.

    “As long as we weren’t strapped with a $126 million contract and the inability to really build around the player, we feel like this is probably the best thing that could have happened to us.’’


    Source: Boston Globe


    Seems BC or Boston Globe are rewriting a little history: Bosh was offered max extension, rebuild was not started with Bosh leaving it was started with MJ nixing.

    After you get past the historical fluff and introductory BS, the last half is really good i.e. Casey onwards.

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    Administrator Apollo's Avatar
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    Why can't the attempt for Tyson Chandler be considered part of a rebuild?

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    Raptors Republic Starter RaptorDan's Avatar
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    Colangelo is a true spin doctor. He always puts everything in such a positive light and makes the future look so rosy. Nice article.
    Never, under any circumstances, take a sleeping pill and a laxative on the same night.

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    Raptors Republic Hall of Famer mcHAPPY's Avatar
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    Quote Apollo wrote: View Post
    Why can't the attempt for Tyson Chandler be considered part of a rebuild?
    That is true and a good point. The Raptors would have shed Jose's contract and Chandler would have been an expiring contract. His play prior to last season would not have suggested him to be a difference maker.

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    Raptors Republic Starter Pele's Avatar
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    "the Raptors will try to entertain their rather diverse and neophyte fan base"

    Not sure what to make of that statement. All I know is that, up until around 2005, I bled blue and white. At around that point, the Raptors began to attract my attention. To be honest, these days things have come around full tilt. The Raps are my team. The Leafs just kind of bore me. I guess, in that respect, I am a neo-phyte. Not sure about the rest of you.

    Anyone know where we can find a clip of this Colangelo interview? I'd love to hear him say that Bosh isn't "...that calibre of player". Of course, I'm not sure why BC tried to make him a center-piece in the first place. Just saying..

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    Quote Matt52 wrote: View Post
    That is true and a good point. The Raptors would have shed Jose's contract and Chandler would have been an expiring contract. His play prior to last season would not have suggested him to be a difference maker.
    As well if Chandler were not to stay with the Raps there may have been some asset/s coming back in a sign & trade for him. The only downside I see is that BC may not have drafted JV and gone for a guard. This would have been a tricky decision because of the lockout and the possibility of Chandler not resigning. But then again I saw BC wetting his pants when he found JV dropped to him so.....

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    Administrator Apollo's Avatar
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    Quote Matt52 wrote: View Post
    That is true and a good point. The Raptors would have shed Jose's contract and Chandler would have been an expiring contract. His play prior to last season would not have suggested him to be a difference maker.
    I wouldn't say that. He's always been a good defender and knows how to hit the glass. He's always been known for doing the blue collar stuff. The Raptors could have used a vet who could contribute and set the right example.

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    Quote RaptorDan wrote: View Post
    Colangelo is a true spin doctor. He always puts everything in such a positive light and makes the future look so rosy. Nice article.
    I don't understand how some people expect anything different from any GM worth his salt. Do people think he should be throwing himself, his plans, his players, his coaches under the bus?

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    Quote Pele wrote: View Post
    "the Raptors will try to entertain their rather diverse and neophyte fan base"

    Not sure what to make of that statement. All I know is that, up until around 2005, I bled blue and white. At around that point, the Raptors began to attract my attention. To be honest, these days things have come around full tilt. The Raps are my team. The Leafs just kind of bore me. I guess, in that respect, I am a neo-phyte. Not sure about the rest of you.

    Anyone know where we can find a clip of this Colangelo interview? I'd love to hear him say that Bosh isn't "...that calibre of player". Of course, I'm not sure why BC tried to make him a center-piece in the first place. Just saying..
    I see your point but if the writer covers the Celtics who have been around for a thousand years, you can see how he gets there. A Maple Leaf reporter may say the same thing about Nashville fans and they may disagree the same way. But, as they say, any press is good press.

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    Raptors Republic All-Star Fully's Avatar
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    I wish Colangelo would stop his media tour de force and show a little humility considering the decisions that made us a bottom five team in the league all fall at his feet.

    I've seen so many press articles and quotes from him over the last few months where he talks about his "vision" and I can't help but be annoyed considering he had no choice but to rebuild after running the team into the dirt. Yes it's true that they've got some nice pieces in place and if a couple of things go their way then they have a chance to be pretty good relatively soon but those things are far from guarantees. We have to knock our 2012 draft pick out of the park and then lure a top free agent to Toronto the same summer and neither of those things are exactly locks so I'd hold off on patting myself on the back until then if I were BC. Hell, we haven't even seen JV play a single second in the NBA yet and he's already accepting the congratulations for a great pick.

    If he insists on doing these interviews then he might as well tell the truth. He reiterated for years that Chris Bosh was a franchise type player and that they were committed to keeping him in Toronto with a max deal. If Colangelo had his way, Bosh would still be here and we'd be the same middle of the pack team in the East. It's also worth noting that one of the two first rounders the Raps got from Miami in the Bosh deal was just their own pick back after they had to include it in the deal to get Jermaine O'Neal out of town... which of course was one of BC's notable string of offseason splashes only a few months before.

    Overall I think he's getting a little ahead of himself seeing as the only part of the rebuild he's actually accomplished so far is where the team bottoms out. I can understand he's excited/proud of the potential in Toronto but considering how the last few years have gone I'd rather he be a little more humble.
    Last edited by Fully; Mon Jan 2nd, 2012 at 07:50 PM.

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    Raptors Republic Hall of Famer mcHAPPY's Avatar
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    Quote Fully wrote: View Post
    I wish Colangelo would stop his media tour de force and show a little humility considering the decisions that made us a bottom five team in the league all fall at his feet.

    I've seen more press articles and quotes from him over the last few months where he talks about his "vision" and I can't help but be annoyed considering he had no choice but to rebuild after running the team into the dirt. Yes it's true that they've got some nice pieces in place and if a couple of things go their way then they have a chance to be pretty good relatively soon but those things are far from guarantees. We have to knock our 2012 draft pick out of the park and then lure a top free agent to Toronto the same summer and both those things are far from locks so I'd hold off on patting myself on the back until then if I were BC. Hell, we haven't even seen JV play a single second in the NBA yet and he's already accepting the congratulations for a great pick.

    If he insists on doing these interviews then he might as well tell the truth. He reiterated for years that Chris Bosh was a franchise type player and that they were committed to keeping him in Toronto with a max deal. If Colangelo had his way, Bosh would still be here and we'd be the same middle of the pack team in the East. It's also worth noting that one of the two first rounders the Raps got from Miami in the Bosh deal was just their own pick back after they had to include it in the deal to get Jermaine O'Neal out of town... which of course was one of BC's notable string of offseason splashes only a few months before.

    Overall I think he's getting a little ahead of himself seeing as the only part of the rebuild he's actually accomplished so far is where the team bottoms out. I can understand he's excited/proud of the potential in Toronto but considering how the last few years have gone I'd rather he be a little more humble.
    +1

    Great post.

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    Raptors Republic Starter Deadallus's Avatar
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    Default Cut Him Some Slack

    I think people are too critical of Colangelo. To use a baseball analogy, he took some big swings and missed, but at least he wasn't sitting with the bat on his shoulder wondering what could have been.

    For every mistake he made, from O'Neal to Marion to Hedon't and even minor pick up's like Fred Jones, when things didn't work out he shipped them off quickly rather than hold onto them and hope that things turn around.

    Bosh was not a cornerstone player to build around, but he was still a 20-10 guy, look around there aren't many. So to fault him when other teams also tried to build with 20-10 players ie. Randolf in NY/Portland), Boozer in Utah, is not as rediculous as some have portrayed.

    As far as media spin goes, athletes now a day, ESPECIALLY in the NBA are major pussies. What do you want him to say when people ask about Bosh as a cornerstone? "Chris is a great player but he will never be the kind of guy to carry a team, so we are hoping to luck out and get a real franchise player." He was stroking his ego and trying to fit pieces around a very talented player. The Pistons were successful for many years without a true star, so it can be done.

    I know its really easy to get deluded into thinking we can all be GM's by crafting rediculous trades on ESPN trade machine, but it doesn't take in to account random variables like how pieces fit into a particular team/coaches system, and whether said players even want to play for your team (Alonzo Mourning anyone). People seem to forget that getting players to come to Toronto has always been a hard job. Toronto gets players through the draft and trades but it has always been slim pickings with free agents.

    The guy hasn't done a great job, but few GM's do. Some are poor, some are great and the most fall somewhere in between. Lets stop casting guys off who make a few unpopular/bad moves. Everyone makes mistakes, at least he tries to correct his.
    Deadallus

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    Raptors Republic Starter RaptorDan's Avatar
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    Quote p00ka wrote: View Post
    I don't understand how some people expect anything different from any GM worth his salt. Do people think he should be throwing himself, his plans, his players, his coaches under the bus?
    It was a comment not a critique. Dude's got mad skills.
    Never, under any circumstances, take a sleeping pill and a laxative on the same night.

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    Quote Deadallus wrote: View Post
    I think people are too critical of Colangelo. To use a baseball analogy, he took some big swings and missed, but at least he wasn't sitting with the bat on his shoulder wondering what could have been.

    For every mistake he made, from O'Neal to Marion to Hedon't and even minor pick up's like Fred Jones, when things didn't work out he shipped them off quickly rather than hold onto them and hope that things turn around.

    Bosh was not a cornerstone player to build around, but he was still a 20-10 guy, look around there aren't many. So to fault him when other teams also tried to build with 20-10 players ie. Randolf in NY/Portland), Boozer in Utah, is not as rediculous as some have portrayed.

    As far as media spin goes, athletes now a day, ESPECIALLY in the NBA are major pussies. What do you want him to say when people ask about Bosh as a cornerstone? "Chris is a great player but he will never be the kind of guy to carry a team, so we are hoping to luck out and get a real franchise player." He was stroking his ego and trying to fit pieces around a very talented player. The Pistons were successful for many years without a true star, so it can be done.

    I know its really easy to get deluded into thinking we can all be GM's by crafting rediculous trades on ESPN trade machine, but it doesn't take in to account random variables like how pieces fit into a particular team/coaches system, and whether said players even want to play for your team (Alonzo Mourning anyone). People seem to forget that getting players to come to Toronto has always been a hard job. Toronto gets players through the draft and trades but it has always been slim pickings with free agents.

    The guy hasn't done a great job, but few GM's do. Some are poor, some are great and the most fall somewhere in between. Lets stop casting guys off who make a few unpopular/bad moves. Everyone makes mistakes, at least he tries to correct his.
    I agree. I never quite understand why some need to see some groveling from the boss before they can acknowledge the strengths and abilities that make him who he is. Everything you said here is bang on.

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    Raptors Republic All-Star Fully's Avatar
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    Quote Deadallus wrote: View Post
    I think people are too critical of Colangelo. To use a baseball analogy, he took some big swings and missed, but at least he wasn't sitting with the bat on his shoulder wondering what could have been.

    For every mistake he made, from O'Neal to Marion to Hedon't and even minor pick up's like Fred Jones, when things didn't work out he shipped them off quickly rather than hold onto them and hope that things turn around.

    Bosh was not a cornerstone player to build around, but he was still a 20-10 guy, look around there aren't many. So to fault him when other teams also tried to build with 20-10 players ie. Randolf in NY/Portland), Boozer in Utah, is not as rediculous as some have portrayed.

    As far as media spin goes, athletes now a day, ESPECIALLY in the NBA are major pussies. What do you want him to say when people ask about Bosh as a cornerstone? "Chris is a great player but he will never be the kind of guy to carry a team, so we are hoping to luck out and get a real franchise player." He was stroking his ego and trying to fit pieces around a very talented player. The Pistons were successful for many years without a true star, so it can be done.

    I know its really easy to get deluded into thinking we can all be GM's by crafting rediculous trades on ESPN trade machine, but it doesn't take in to account random variables like how pieces fit into a particular team/coaches system, and whether said players even want to play for your team (Alonzo Mourning anyone). People seem to forget that getting players to come to Toronto has always been a hard job. Toronto gets players through the draft and trades but it has always been slim pickings with free agents.

    The guy hasn't done a great job, but few GM's do. Some are poor, some are great and the most fall somewhere in between. Lets stop casting guys off who make a few unpopular/bad moves. Everyone makes mistakes, at least he tries to correct his.
    I understand that building an NBA roster is a lot more complex than tinkering with the trade machine or assembling your fantasy line up as you need to pay a certain level of attention on just how the pieces you have on your team will fit together. However it is my opinion that this is where BC has made some of his largest failures during his time in Toronto as his two biggest moves (trading for O'Neal and signing Turkoglu) were absolute DISASTERS from a chemistry standpoint both off the court and on it.

    You can give Colangelo credit for cutting ties quickly with both players after it became obvious that it wasn't going to work, but if you're constantly correcting your mistakes then it becomes a case of taking one step forward and two steps back. We certainly didn't come out ahead on the JO proceedings considering we gave up Ford, Nesterovic and Roy Hibbert on a rookie scale contract in order to get O'Neal in Toronto, and when he left town we got a 3 month Shawn Marion rental in return. Overall, that's a pretty big net loss for the franchise and I think you're giving Colangelo a free pass that he doesn't deserve.

    I'm aware that it's historically been difficult to lure free agents to Toronto which is just another reason why I think Colangelo should ease up on his media parade and see how the next 12 months play out before he starts basking in too much glory. This is the easy part of the rebuild. It doesn't take a visionary to have your team bottom out and grab a couple of high draft picks in consecutive years. There's a half dozen or more franchises in the NBA right now like that - young teams with a couple of building blocks from the lottery in place that are looking to get an All NBA caliber player in the draft this summer and then use their cap room to land an impact free agent. Not all of them will be successful, and in fact, most of them won't. Colangelo's toughest work is still ahead of him and I'd rather he be seen and not heard considering all of the circumstances.
    Last edited by Fully; Tue Jan 3rd, 2012 at 01:48 PM.

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    Raptors Republic Veteran ceez's Avatar
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    Quote Fully wrote: View Post
    I wish Colangelo would stop his media tour de force and show a little humility considering the decisions that made us a bottom five team in the league all fall at his feet.

    I've seen so many press articles and quotes from him over the last few months where he talks about his "vision" and I can't help but be annoyed considering he had no choice but to rebuild after running the team into the dirt. Yes it's true that they've got some nice pieces in place and if a couple of things go their way then they have a chance to be pretty good relatively soon but those things are far from guarantees. We have to knock our 2012 draft pick out of the park and then lure a top free agent to Toronto the same summer and neither of those things are exactly locks so I'd hold off on patting myself on the back until then if I were BC. Hell, we haven't even seen JV play a single second in the NBA yet and he's already accepting the congratulations for a great pick.

    If he insists on doing these interviews then he might as well tell the truth. He reiterated for years that Chris Bosh was a franchise type player and that they were committed to keeping him in Toronto with a max deal. If Colangelo had his way, Bosh would still be here and we'd be the same middle of the pack team in the East. It's also worth noting that one of the two first rounders the Raps got from Miami in the Bosh deal was just their own pick back after they had to include it in the deal to get Jermaine O'Neal out of town... which of course was one of BC's notable string of offseason splashes only a few months before.

    Overall I think he's getting a little ahead of himself seeing as the only part of the rebuild he's actually accomplished so far is where the team bottoms out. I can understand he's excited/proud of the potential in Toronto but considering how the last few years have gone I'd rather he be a little more humble.
    Hit the nail directly on the head. Exactly.

    BC needs to shut up regarding Bosh, too. Yes he wasnt what we all hoped he was but you surely could have gotten a better haul than a late first round pick and some TPE. C'mon man. Rockets were practically foaming at the mouth for him. Get over it, you fucked up. The more he brings it up the less douchey Bosh looks and I simply won't have that.
    @jerboat

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