Last edited by Apollo; Thu Jun 21st, 2012 at 04:07 PM. Reason: URL linking
.The Toronto Raptors obtain the #LicensetoLillard.
by Ryne Nelson / @slaman10
After four losing seasons, everyone in Toronto wants nothing less than a Playoff team.
The Raps are coming off a 23-43 season that saw some positive steps forward, but not enough to avoid missing the postseason for another year. Future centerpieces DeMar DeRozan, Ed Davis and even Andrea Bargnani (who had, by a spate of injuries, a spoiled breakout ’11-12 campaign) still have a lot of growing to do.
The Raptors are no doubt looking for multiple opportunities heading into the Draft, with significant upgrades at small forward and point guard as first priorities.
It’s no secret that the Raptors are willing to part with the No. 8 pick in order to acquire Andre Iguodala or Rudy Gay. Fan favorite Jose Calderon (and his expiring $10.5 million contract) is at the center of most trade speculation. A package involving Numero Ocho, the No. 8 pick and Ed Davis could possibly land an impact wing.
That said, players on rookie-scale contracts are valuable in the NBA, especially with the League’s punitive luxury tax. Trading the No. 8 pick—especially with so many NBA-ready, character guys still available—would be a crime.
Syracuse SG Dion Waiters and UConn SG Jeremy Lamb can light it up, and the Raptors need a scorer. Both talented scoring guards are certainly on the radar, but the team is still far from making promises.
Both Lamb and Waiters made questionable moves at the Pre-Draft Combine. Waiters blew off the combine altogether, as well as his interview with the Raptors. Lamb bailed on the on-court portion, and his passivity carried over to the interviews as well.
Perry Jones III is another consideration with his length and athleticism, but he’s a project who needs time to develop. Toronto needs more of an immediate impact.
Austin Rivers is a skilled 2-guard and a deadly scorer, but his average decision-making and sometimes poor attitude aren’t qualities that fit the team.
All of which leads us to a humble and hungry Oakland point guard who has been on Toronto’s radar from the jump.
With the eighth pick in the 2012 SLAMonline Mock Draft, the Toronto Raptors select…
Damian Lillard from Weber State.
First featured on SLAMonline in February, the Weber State PG finished his redshirt junior campaign second in the NCAA in scoring at 24.5 ppg. He’s an extremely efficient shooter, who connected on 41 percent of his attempts from the beyond the arc.
Last edited by Apollo; Thu Jun 21st, 2012 at 04:07 PM. Reason: You're welcome
This looks to be over a week old already. That's an eternity in the world of social media-fueled rumours
"I don't lie. I willfully participate in a campaign of misinformation." - Fox Mulder
It's also very hard to draft a player who very well could be gone by the time the Raptors pick, no matter how much they like him or how well he'd fit on the current roster.
Cleveland drafting T-Rob seems a bit far fetched to me, since they already have TT on their roster. They may go for BPA but I assume that they'd take Barnes over T-Rob.
I'm sure this article came out before Sullinger was red-flagged.. Sacramento drafting him at 5 would be awesome for us.. just don't see it happening.
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