Morning Coffee

Morning Coffee – May 21

Toronto Star

"You can’t have too many voices," Triano said yesterday. "We need to challenge each other, yes; but we all have to have the same basic philosophies or it won’t work."

With NBA-wide speculation rampant that Triano will eventually hire former Memphis head coach Marc Iavaroni as his lead assistant, no one connected with the Raptors would confirm even that contact between the sides had been made. Iavaroni, who spent a week in Toronto near the end of the NBA season in a consultant’s role, is currently in Asia helping conduct league-sponsored clinics.

Triano said he has no firm timetable to fill out the staff, content to work with general manager Bryan Colangelo and the scouting staff in the run-up to the June 25 draft.

Toronto Star

Jay Triano’s summer just got a little busier thanks to the folks running one of the most successful international basketball programs in the world.

USA Basketball will announce today that Triano will be the lead coach for USAB’s summer national senior team program in July, a precursor to the preparations for the 2010 world championships and the 2012 London Olympics.


Augmenting the Fastbreak – Given the Raptors’ perpetual inability to win close games and hold on to leads, they should be all about (that’s pronounced "a-boot" in Ontario) bringing in more speed and athleticism to improve the category in which Toronto was dead last when Triano took over the team. They did improve quite a bit, but still have a ways to go.

Metro (Jack Armstrong)

I think that in time Roko Ukic can be a solid NBA point guard and improve his shooting and end-of-clock decisions.
Marcus Banks has an inconsistent resumé, so I think the Raptors might need some insurance in case Calderon ever were to miss games and/or play at less than 100 per cent (see this past season).   

Globe and Mail

O’Neal began the program last Sunday, and Rautins, himself a graduate of the Newhouse School and former basketball star at Syracuse, was called in Tuesday to help O’Neal with a number of segments.

While Rautins has always been impressed with O’Neal the player, he came away with high praise for O’Neal the aspiring broadcaster.

"He’s really funny," said Rautins, who splits his time between Syracuse and Toronto. "I always thought he’d be great to play with for that reason, but he was very good at this, too. I’d put him in the top three or four player analysts in the league right now, no offence to who’s out there. He’s just so colourful and so fun."

Rautins said it’s clear O’Neal envisages himself as having a presence on radio and as a studio analyst down the road. To that end, Rautins was featured as a guest on the The Shaq Show and also joined him on a panel as part of a mock pregame show.

Leadership Nigeria

With a couple of  months to the  African Basketball Nations Cup, Libya 2009, NBA’s Toronto Raptors general-manager, one of the three shortlisted coaches for the male team, Masai Ujiri has expressed willingness to coach D’Tigers to the competition.

The ex-basketball international said it is not about Nigerian Basketball Federation showing it value but how to make the country do well in Libya.

Draft Express

A number of teams are already reportedly sending out feelers indicating that they would like to acquire a pick in the late first round—including the San Antonio Spurs, Houston Rockets and Toronto Raptors. A few teams that are rumored to be looking to trade or sell their picks are the Oklahoma City Thunder (#25), Minnesota Timberwolves (#28) and New Orleans Hornets (#21).

Toronto Raptors- This team needs all the help they can get. They traded Jermaine O’Neal hoping to gain a better offensive position which they failed at and Shawn Marion and Anthony Parker (both unrestricted free agents) might not be back. The Raptors need an all around player to work both ends of the court.
KGood says: DeMar DeRozan, SG or Earl Clark, SF


9. Toronto Raptors (Pete): Tyreke Evans, PG/SG, Memphis

This is a team in trouble. Chris Bosh wants out, Anthony Parker and Shawn Marion are leaving and their second best player might be Andrea Bargnani. I’m going with the best player available, and in my opinion, that is Tyreke Evans. Evans was the best player on Memphis as a freshman, and led his team to the Sweet 16 while winning National Freshman of the Year. He can get to the basket and is creative scorer, something that Toronto doesn’t have right now. Could end up as a steal at #9

Draft Express

While in Secaucus at the NBA Draft Lottery last night, we had the chance to chat with General Managers Sam Presti of the Oklahoma City Thunder, Bryan Colangelo of the Toronto Raptors and John Hammond of the Milwaukee Bucks to get their thoughts on this year’s draft class and what their team needs to do to avoid returning here next May.


Raptorts head coach joins the late night vampire Norm Rumack from Las Vegas to talk about the upcoming season as he addresses some of the teams needs, his transition from assistant coach and the NBA playoffs


Raptors Vice President stops by Primetime Sports to discuss all things Raptors, and discuss the process of preparing for the NBA Draft.


9. Toronto Raptors – Earl Clark SF/PF
21 years old; 6?9?; 220 lbs.
Louisville, Junior

9. Toronto Raptors- G Tyreke Evan, Memphis
Reason: This is probably the best-case scenario for the Raptors. Evans falls and they can play him alongside Jose Calderon or deal Calderon away for some big man help. Evans’ ability and potential might be enough after the first two months of the season to get Chris Bosh back on board with the retooling process. Evans has star potential and that’s what the Raptors need to attract big name guys to come to Toronto (or stay as is the case with Bosh).
Next best pick -Demar DeRozan is still that big name freshman on the board with a lot of talent and a lot of potential to become a star player.

Khandor’s Sports Blog

Now that the order for the 2009 NBA Draft Lottery has been determined, and no teams from the Eastern Conference dramatically improved their selection slot, it becomes a lot more interesting to project which teams might become legitimate contenders for the 8 playoff positions next year.

If the season was to start tomorrow, each of the following teams might well be expected to become a more serious threat than the Toronto Raptors, given the current state of their personnel:

Let us into your life… @raptorsrepublic, @altraps, @arsenalist, @rapsfan

Let us entertain you… come back later today for an article sure to garner some discussion.

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