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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Where do the Raptors stand?

There are so many questions that need to be answered with this team. So many controversial moves.

They have the talent to be a playoff team. It all depends on how far Mr.Vince Carter can take them. Game 5 of the NBA First Round playoffs. Final score of 85-82 for the Pistons. The Raptors took the series 5 games after being considered "OUT" when Vince Carter finished the season to a knee injury. They kept saying the Raptors have no chance against the Pistons when they already lost the first game. When the Raptors lost the second game, Piston fans were already screaming, "SWEEP, SWEEP, SWEEP." But the heart and determination of the Raptors team took a nice turn when they came back and won the next two games to bring the Raptors players, the organization, and the fans back into the series.

Game 5 ended up being a heartbreaker. Lost by 3, without their star, some questionable moves made Toronto exit early. Dell Curry led that game in scoring with 17, and they don't even think its necessary to sign him. No hard feelings though, the Raptors had an impressive season. They had a 13 game losing streak, lost their best player yet they came back to win 12 of their last 14 games in the season. That shows some heart with this team. Even when they fell, they never gave up. After the losing streak all Raptor fans were yelling, "FIRE LENNY! FIRE THE KOALA." Glen Grunwald stuck to his coach, and Lenny Wilkens a coach hated by most Raptor fans was awarded Coach of the Month honors in the last month of the season. So many weird turns took place with this organization.

Now, we are at the offseason stage. A stage dreaded by most Raptor fans until last year when they signed all their free agents and also got legendary centre, Hakeem Olajuwon. This year, though, has seen some slight changes. Coming into the offseason our main goal was to re-sign Keon Clark, the big man who really surprised many Raptor fans with his talent. Standing 6'11 on the skinniest legs in the NBA the Raptors had to re-sign him to even think of contending in the Eastern Conference next year.

June 26th, 2002. Draft Day. Very exciting time for all of the teams in the NBA. The day where they draft the player they think will eventually help the team. The draft started with the Houston Rockets selecting Yao Ming out of China. A few surprises in the first round let to the eventual pick of Kareem Rush. All praise the Raptors at this moment. We all know that all Raptor fans had a grin on their faces to see this man drop to the 20th position. It seemed like there actually is miracles happening daily. Well we all thought too soon.

As I turned on the radio, I heard as a headline, "The rights to Kareem Rush drafted 20th by the Raptors, and shooting specialist Tracy Murray have been traded to defending NBA Champions the Los Angeles Lakers for Lindsay Hunter and the rights to Chris Jeffries. The hearts of millions of Raptor fans stopped at this moment. In my head I was thinking, what is the world coming to?
Little did we know, but this trade was mainly done to save some money and get a better chance at signing our free agent Keon Clark. Saving a million dollars may not seem like a lot in the NBA, but in this situation it meant almost everything.

Now today, on this sunny day in Toronto, the 23rd of July I stand thinking in my head what is going on. I can honestly say that I am confused, as many Raptor fans around the world are. Glen Grunwald rescinded his offer to Keon Clark, saying that the two sides cannot come to an agreement. So Glen, "why did you make that trade with the Lakers? Why can't you just sign him so we can actually be a threat in this league? Why are you giving up on the season? What are we going to do now?" Those are just some of the questions that come to our minds. I mean personally, I am disgusted of what the Raptors have done so far in the offseason. They have done nothing to prove to us that they can compete night in and night out with the team they are putting on the floor. Things may change in the future, but as they stand now, this team doesn't look as impressive as it might have. Don't be afraid Raptor fans, something good is bound to happen. Keep your head and hopes up, we might be able to snatch someone who can seriously help this team short and long term.

The offseason is still far from over. The summer league has started up and we have a couple of faces that we can look at and see how they perform. At times shaky last season, Michael Bradley out of Villanova has been pretty impressive averaging double figures in both points and rebounds. We get to see a 2nd round draft pick for the Raptors, DeeAndre Hulett perform against NBA calibre opponents. We get to see some combing youth + veteran talent play on the court for a roster spot on this team.

As we speak the Raptors future lies on the shoulders of Vince Carter. A sub-par season last year led to much criticism and hatred. This season should be a different story. He gets the chance to give revenge to the media and his critics. He has something to prove. He has some balanced help around him, an experienced team, but as I said before, Vince Carter needs to shine.


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Awesome post sime!!

I do agree, this franchise is resting on VC's shoulders and lets just hope he is healthy enough to carry all of the weight.

When looking at this team there is alot of uncertaincies at the moment.

-will there be a sign-n-trade involving Keon, or is he gone with no return?

-How healthy will Alvin be after his surgery.

-Will the veterans we have left be able to contribute anything?

-Will Jefferies,Bradely,Collins,Mama, and Yogi be able to contribute anything??

-Can MoP be consistent?

Personally I'm hoping Jefferies or Collins turn out to be a diamond in the rough and produce on the court more then we expect. Which isn't much, but we may need it this season.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Originally posted by raptors32
Awesome post sime!!

I do agree, this franchise is resting on VC's shoulders and lets just hope he is healthy enough to carry all of the weight.

When looking at this team there is alot of uncertaincies at the moment.

-will there be a sign-n-trade involving Keon, or is he gone with no return? - I'm going to say this in my opinion. I do think he will be dealt in a sign and trade for a draft pick of some sort. Possibly a future 1st rounder or 2 2nd rounders

-How healthy will Alvin be after his surgery. - I honestly don't think he will be much better than he was last year. He will be able to contribute but I honestly think last year was probably one of his better years that he will have in his career.

-Will the veterans we have left be able to contribute anything? - This is a question that makes me think for a second. I mean when we look at our veterans, we think of Montross, Hakeem, AD, Hunter. I can honestly say that AD will be the only providing a major role on this team. Hakeem will continue to tutor the younger players.Hunter can only provide so much. And Montross will just be a big man in the rotation with a limited role.

-Will Jefferies,Bradely,Collins,Mama, and Yogi be able to contribute anything?? At the moment only Jefferies IMO will do anything this year. He has the defense we desperately need. Bradley I think should get some minutes this year. He is actually showing some promise in the summer league. Mama is and always will be a question mark for the raptors. Yogi?? Let's hope we find some minutes now that Keon is gone. Collins can develop, but won't do much. 2-3 years down the road he'll be able to actually show something.

-Can MoP be consistent? - Yes and No. That was the question last year. That is the question this year. If he continues from where he left off in the playoffs he will be a very important part of this ballclub.

Personally I'm hoping Jefferies or Collins turn out to be a diamond in the rough and produce on the court more then we expect. Which isn't much, but we may need it this season. - You never know. It all takes time. Too early for real predictions but its worth a shot.
 
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