The new Toronto Raptors
Since their beginnings in 1995 the Toronto Raptors ranged from horribly below average to slightly above average. Any chance of improvement this year?
Probably not, but this is without a doubt the most important season in franchise history.
Additions :Turkoglu, DeRozan, Jack, Belinelli, A. Wright, A. Johnson, Nesterovic, Evans, Weems
Losses: Marion, A. Parker, Kapono, Mensah-Bonsu, Ukic, J. Graham, Delfino
The Raptors GM Brian Colangelo left no doubt that he wasn’t afraid to overhaul the underachieving Raptors of last year. The core of Bosh, Bargnani, and Calderon remain. But other then that the remaining Raptors from ’08-09 won’t be seeing the floor.
For Raptors fans, watching Anthony Parker go was probably the hardest pill to swallow. Parker had been the Raptors best perimeter defender and had been the Raptors only real scoring threat from the 1 to 3 spots.
The thing is, Parker will probably be the only Raptor that fans will miss. The quality acquired far out ways what has been lost.
The addition of Hedo Turkoglu to the Raptors line up gives Raptor fans something to look forward to in the sense that he actually has the size and the skill to adequately defend most anyone at the three-spot. Coming off of a career season, it is likely Hedo’s numbers will decline, but offensively he gives the Raptors one thing they were lacking in years past: a SF capable of putting up a line of about 20 and 7 that is able to create a shot for himself (unlike Marion, who needs to have the shot set for him).
Jarret Jack gives the Raptors a backup to be confident in. Two years removed from the best point guard tandem in the league, Jack should provide a spark at PG and hopefully keep Jose down to about 33 MPG. Not to mention that Jack and Bosh already have one year together at Georgia Tech, so potentially a move to sway Bosh into signing an extension?
Belinelli, Wright, and DeRozan are the Raptors new possibilities at SG. Two of which have massive potential in the NBA. Whether Wright gets the start or the Raptors go with youth, the SG position will probably be the Raptors weakest this year. However, it should be the strongest in years to come. When you have a Rookie athletically being compared to Vince Carter, it is usually a sign that you can be confident in his abilities.
The rest of the additions are role guys, players who are going to go out. With a role in mind, do their job and be done with it. Don’t expect any real numbers from Evans and Nesterovic, but a few rebounds a game will certainly be there for both.
Looking forward for the next season is also Chris Bosh – most probable his last season in Canada.