Opportunity Lost … for the Toronto Raptors

The Raptors’ team that beat the Bobcats last night … Box Score … was indicative of the roster Toronto SHOULD have been playing with from the opening tip this season … minus, of course:

* Rasho Nesterovic
* Rodney Carney
* Royal Ivey
* Jorge Garbajosa
* Carlos Delfino [depending on his interest in returning]
* the 2008 No. 17 [overall] Draft Pick [e.g. Roy Hibbert, CDR, Joey Dorsey, Luc Richard Mbah A Moute]

That line-up … right there … is a top 6 contender in the Eastern Conference, with a legit shot at winning a 1st Round Playoff series this spring and enough flexibility moving forward to become a perennial contender for a spot in the NBA’s FINAL FOUR annually for the balance of Chris Bosh’s career.

That’s the type of line-up a TOP NOTCH President/General Manager would/could/should have been able to put together heading into this season on behalf of the Toronto Raptors given the list of assets which this organization had at its disposal the day before the 2008 NBA Draft.

When this speaker talks of Opportunities Lost, on behalf of this organization, over the years … i.e. since the transfer of ownership from Mr. Steve Stavro to MLSE and the subsequent dismissal of Lenny Wilkens & then Glen Grunwald … this is the type of situation that is being referenced.

* THE problem with the current Raptors
* Of scorpions, frogs, GMs & coaches
* Staying the course in Raptorville
* More Smoke & Mirrors
* 20/20 Vision of the Toronto Raptors
* The next step for the Toronto Raptors
* Understanding Bryan Colangelo’s method of operation [good & bad]
* Toronto Raptors Player Roster 2008-2009


It’s enough to make a knowledgeable NBA observer sick to his/her stomuch.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

22 Responses to “Opportunity Lost … for the Toronto Raptors”

  1. Travis Outlaw Says:

    If the Raptors never traded away Rasho Nesterovic for Jermaine O’Neal. They would still be the same team. Not any better than last years Raptor’s team. Bryan Colangelo traded for O’Neal to take a chance on him so the Raptors could win more. Even if they had Nesterovic now he wouldn’t make much of a difference. And they would probably have the same record right now.

    Rodney Carney and Royal Ivey have yet to prove themselves in the NBA. And don’t make the Raptors any better. If they were on the team they would be the 11th and 12th man or on the injured list.

    Jorge Garbajosa and Carlos Delfino left to Europe. It’s not Bryan Colangelo’s fault. There not even in the NBA anymore. It’s not like they signed with another NBA team.

    Roy Hibbert and LRMAM actually could help the Raptors right now.
    And CDR & Joey Dorsey, Luc Richard Mbah A Moute
    No NBA GM would ever pick them #17. CDR, Joey Dorsey have yet to prove themselves in the NBA.

  2. Travis Outlaw Says:

    If the Raptors had never traded for Jermaine O’Neal. And they still have TJ Ford, Rasho Nesterovič, Maceo Baston, Roy Hibbert. Aren’t they the same team as last year’s Raptors a 7th seed? How do you know for sure they will improve? With those players.

  3. Dan H Says:

    Well, TO, Garbo was bought out by BC, didn’t leave.

    Plus, TJ was going to be traded – Khan is just suggesting that BC should not have done THIS particular trade – instead should have done a 1-for-1 for Rod Carney (I don’t agree, but this is what he is saying).

    Re: have yet to prove themselves in the NBA – well this is true of every rookie. It was true of LBJ. And MJ. etc.

    Re: how do you know they will be better – well, you don’t, but based on the changes of JC starting, Andrea’s improvements, and Bosh elevating his game, improvement could certainly be expected.

    As much as I am used to challenging Khan’s points rather than defending them… Still had to let you know the flaws in your arguments.

  4. Travis Outlaw Says:

    Dan H,
    Carlos Delfino and Jorge Garbajosa went to Khimki BC in Russia. It’s not Bryan Colangelo’s fault. It would be if they signed with another NBA team. But there not even in the NBA anymore. Bryan Colangelo shouldn’t be blamed for two players that left to play basketball in Europe. There was nothing Bryan could do.

    I think Khandor said TJ Ford for Rodney Carney. But is that even a good deal? Rodney Carney has done nothing yet in the NBA to prove his worth to be traded for a solid point guard like TJ Ford.

  5. Travis Outlaw Says:

    Dan H,
    Rodney Carney and Royal Ivey have yet to prove themselves in the NBA. There not rookies anymore. They’ve played in the NBA for a couple of years now. And they have done nothing of significance. They don’t help the Raptors one bit as they are nothing better than 11th and 12th man.

    RE: have yet to prove themselves in the NBA – well this is true of every rookie. It was true of LBJ. And MJ. etc.
    -You knew LBJ and MJ when there were rookies were going to be very good as they were both drafted #1 and #3. There are still question marks on other rookies like CDR, Joey Dorsey. My point was CDR & Joey Dorsey are rookies right now and can’t help the Raptors much because they are just rookies. They would probably both be coming off the bench.

  6. The AltRaps Blog » Toronto Raptors Linkage for November 27th from 14:23 to 14:29 Says:

    […] Opportunity Lost … for the Toronto Raptors – […]

  7. khandor Says:

    Dan H,

    Thanks very much for your help!



    Not sure exactly what you fail to understand about what I wrote the first time.

    Have you ever conducted a scientific study?

    When a scientist changes more than one variable at a time it then becomes to much more difficult to isolate a relationship which exists between any of the altered variables and the eventual outcome of the experiment’s results.


    * The only player from the Raptors’ roster last year that needed to find a new home this off-season was TJ Ford. IMO, he should have been traded for a single Wing player. Period.

    If that player was a good one, terrific. If not, then, too bad.

    * Brezec, Baston and Martin needed to be released.

    * This would have left 11 players on the Raptors’ active player roster:

    1 Calderon
    2 Parker
    3 Moon
    4 Humphries
    5 Bosh
    6 Delfino
    7 Kapono
    8 Graham
    9 Bargnani
    10 Nesterovic
    11 Garbajosa

    to which the following list of players could have also been added this past summer:

    12 ?-player acquired in the trade for Ford [e.g. Rodney Carney, whose salary fit with Mr. Ford’s]
    13 ?-No. 17 [overall] Draft Pick/2008 … e.g Hibbert, CDR, Dorsey, LRMAM
    14 ?-Royal Ivey [back-up PG]
    15 ?-Reserve Veteran Big … e.g. Austin Croshere … or, Roko Ukic [3rd-string PG]

    pending available room under the Salary Cap.


    Delfino went to Europe because the Raptors could not pay him a comparable salary … given the $21 million per year they were now committing to pay Jermaine O’Neal. Secondarily, there was also a report of a chemistry issue with his role on last year’s team.

    Garbajosa was BOUGHT OUT of the remaining years on his contract …[i] to open up cap space, and [ii] bring closure to the team’s lawsuit against the Spanish Basketball Federation, re: his recurring leg injury/rehab.


    Because you might not know very much about either Carney or Ivey … or be able to see the legitimate ability of players like Moon, Humphries & Graham … does not mean that they would have been incapable of helping last year’s team improve on its 41-41 record this season, minus the antics of Mr. Ford and with the increased PT for Mr. Calderon.

  8. Project Says:

    “12 ?-player acquired in the trade for Ford [e.g. Rodney Carney, whose salary fit with Mr. Ford’s]”

    Carney and Ford’s salary match?

  9. khandor Says:


    I’m not a NBA capologist by any means but …

    I do recall when I used a trade checker last season, to scan the League quickly for a 1:1 scenario in which Ford could be moved in a deal I felt the other team would be willing to accept, Carney’s name was one of the few that came up which I thought filled the bill of what the Raptors should have been looking for in return, when trading their back-up PG, with a congential neck defect that had caused him to miss major parts of two seasons in the NBA.

    If I recall correctly, although Ford’s salary was considerably more than Carney’s, at the time, the trade was a go because of Ford’s unique status as a player who was under his “re-upped” rookie contract for a team in a specific cap situation [either over or under the stated cap amount, I don’t remember that detail].

    Even if this was not the case, however, the 76ers could easily have included more filler from their end [e.g. Calvin Booth, I think] to have made the trade a go at the time, with matching salary amounts, if need be.

    IMO, the important thing to realize is what Bryan Colangelo actually had to say about the team’s trade with the Pacers:

    “This was the best offer on the table at the time for Ford.”

    Raptors’ fans need to think about that … long and hard.

    Ford could only be traded … in a package which included Nesterovic [a vet Big with an expiring contract] + a flip-flop of Draft picks [with the advantage going to Indiana at that] + filler [i.e. Baston] … for a player with a history of debilitating leg/knee injuries, who had missed major parts of 3 of the last 4 seasons, had formerly been suspended by the League Office for his part in an historic brawl, and who someone like Larry Bird was actively trying to get rid of from his team.


    IMO, most NBA observers don’t really have a clue how good Rodney Carney is, as a developing Wing player, in this League; nor how good TJ Ford actually is, as a main-frame PG in the NBA.

  10. TrueRapsFan Says:


    Gotta say that I am (suprisingly) a regular reader of your blog… although I have only ever posted once. I think its one of those things that frustrates me so much I can’t get enough of it. Not trying to offend you at all, as we are all entitled to our opinions, and yours definetly creates debate among us raps fans.

    I gotta say though that I don’t really understand your obsession with continually “bashing” (not the right word but the closest I can think of right now) this current raps team. This team is good.. or has potential to be a top 4 seed in the east… if given some time.

    I don’t really see many of those players you named above improving this team, in place of JO. I think the last 3 games were indictive of how important JO is to this team. The squeak by the Bobcats, a game that should have been a blowout but, with no interior defense, stayed close. The Celtics scored inside with ease (although the whole team sucked that game). And the raps lose NJ after having a 18 point lead…. a result of JO leaving the game. The defense has been none existent when JO is out. Its that simple. Don’t get me wrong I don’t think JO is a the saviour of this team.. but he has added some much needed interior D and a little fire to the team. It has allowed AB to move to the 3 (which I been praying for since last year) and look how his game has flourished since then.

    I would love to see Rasho, Delfino and Garbo in a raps uni again, but none of them make teh raps a contender. Delfino is so inconsistent its ridiculous. Garbo was never the same after his injury, and we all saw that. And Rasho is Rasho. A solid backup center that plays smart, but limited in ability. Everyone else you listed improves nothing, except perhaps the Raps future if they turn out…. and I have little to no faith in any of them.

    If the Raps are to improve what the need are one thing: A perimeter defender. I can’t think of any rap who plays good D on the perimeter. AP is supposed to be our go to defender, but hes a good team defender… not a good man-to-man defender. He is great at deflecting pass and shifting on D, but continually gets beats by his man. This either forces the raps big men to step in, or the wing, leaving an open man down low, or around the corner. I think the fact that opposing SG/SF score more points against the Raps than other teams is proof of that.

    I guarantee that if JO is out for an extended period of time… this rap teams has a losing record. If JO plays close to a full season you see raps in the Top 5. (umm.. this is also assuming Calderon stays healthy because if he’s out… raps are toast)

  11. khandor Says:


    Your comment is very much appreciated here.

    In general, the answers to the questions you’ve posed are far from straight forward.

    Hopefully this will be to your satisfaction.


    The fact is … my relationship with the NBA stretches back to 1969-1970 … while my status as a Raptors’ observer and a fan pre-dates the arrival of the franchise in the League.

    Since then, I have seen each and every High End team play in this League, and feel fairly sure that I know what a High End team looks like, up close and personal. If you read the article posted on this blog which deals with, “The Source of Confidence”, you should be able to get a solid sense of where it is authentic confidence is rooted, from MPOV.

    Each of our perspectives is unique … but from mine, you should know that … at no point have I ever said the Raptors are a “bad team”, or “bashed” them in any way, shape or form.

    What I write … and think, and feel … about the Raptors is based on what I’ve observed from their organization.

    When they do something which I think is first rate, then I say that.

    When they do something which I think is far from being first rate, then I say that.

    If I have a bias … it is towards Excellence.

    Excellent individuals/people.
    Excellent teams.
    Excellent organizations.

    It is extremely difficult to operate what I’ll term A Professional Sports Franchise Committed to Excellence.

    Vince Lombardi once said long ago that,

    “The most competitive games are played by the most competitive men.”

    It would be fair to say that I am a most competitive person.


    re: the role of Jermaine O’Neal on the Raptors

    There are so many deceptive things involved with the game of basketball, it is really one of its many charms. 🙂

    The stark reality is though … What you see isn’t always what you get.

    By way of concrete example …

    In 1977, the Philadelphia 76ers fielded a team of:

    World B. Free
    Doug Collins
    Julius Erving
    George McGinnis
    Caldwell Jones
    Henry Bibby
    Steve Mix
    Darryl Dawkins
    Harvey Catchings
    Mike Dunleavy
    Terry Furlow
    Joe Bryant


    the Portland Trail Blazers line-up of:

    Dave Twardzik
    Lionel Hollins
    Bobby Gross
    Maurice Lucas
    Bill Walton
    Johnny Davis
    Larry Steele
    Herm Gilliam
    Lloyd Neal
    Robin Jones
    Wally Walker
    Corky Calhoun

    of which ONLY 1 player, i.e. Bill Walton, would have been able to start if he would have switched allegiances.

    Let me repeat that for you and others to digest further.

    The World Club Champions of 1997, the Portland Trail Blazers had but ONE player on their entire squad who was ‘good enough’ to have started for the very team which they DEFEATED in the NBA Finals that season.

    What you see isn’t always what you get … in NBA Hoops.


    If you would have switched just the following two players …

    Dave Twardzik & World B. Free

    IMO, the Trail Blazers organization would still be without a NBA Title to its credit today; while the 76ers would have at least one or two more.

    Yet, anyone who watched these two individuals play the game, in the NBA, would most assuredly tell you that World B. Free was a far superior basketball player, in comparison with Dave Twardzik.

    Surely adding a marginal NBA player like Dave Twardzik could not possibly make that much of a difference to one team, while adding an accomplished player/scorer like World B. Free couldn’t possibly deminish a title-winning calibre 12-man team like the legendary 1977 Trail Blazers? Could it? 😉

    Fact is … there are countless other examples throughout the history of the NBA which I could just as easily have used to convey my points … but I’ll simply chose not to use them here.

    Yes, Jermaine O’Neal is still a solid shot-blocker, rebounder and scorer, in the NBA.

    But this assessment, alone, of his individual skill set does NOT mean that a specific NBA team on which Jermaine plays will be/is better off through his presence on the court than it is with a lesser player like Rasho Nesterovic, or Kris Humphries or Austin Croshere, etc., getting those same minutes played instead of Mr. O’Neal.

    By way of corollary …

    When I saw Ramon Sessions play last season, a player most Raptors’ fans wouldn’t have been able to identify in a police line-up standing between Kevin Spacey and Samuel L. Jackson, there was no doubt this young man could indeed become a solid, solid PG in the NBA, if provided with the chance to show what he can do on the big stage, for extended minutes at a time.

    Now, 12 months later, when Kenny Smith speaks about the good things happening in Milwaukee, one of the things he mentions immediately is his perception that it is only a matter of time before Ramon Sessions gives Scott Skiles no choice but to play Ramon as his 1st-string PG, over Luc Ridnour and Ty Lue, two other players who the Bucks’ new GM acquired this summer.


    Just because certain active voices in the blogosphere might tell you and others that players like Rasho Nesterovic, Jorge Garbajosa, Carlos Delfino, Rodney Carney, Royal Ivey, Roy Hibbert/Chris Douglas-Roberts/Joey Dorsey/Luc Richard Mbah A Moute/etc., and Austin Croshere [for example] … are not the calibre of players which are needed to transform this current Raptors’ team into a legit Top 6 contender, in the EC … without TJ Ford … but, in conjunction with

    Chris Bosh
    Jose Calderon
    Anthony Parker
    Kris Humphries
    Andrea Bargnani
    Joey Graham
    Jamario Moon
    Roko Ukic

    doesn’t mean that those individuals’ opinions should be of any relevance to me or, in fact, be more accurate than my own assessment of their ability to accomplish that specific goal.

    As I mention frequently …

    “The proof of the pudding is in the eating.”Anonymous

    … and time, alone, will provide the definitive answer to the question of whether or not my opines about these matters will eventually be proven correct or incorrect.


    If anyone is truly interested in testing out whether or not my assessment, in this regard, is correct or not, here’s what I suggest you do:

    Simply send an email to a current or a former GM, whose team has won a NBA championship, and ask him to provide you with his appraisal of the following two line-ups,

    Team One—–vs.—–Team Two


    Moon——————–Moon or Graham


    Graham—————–Graham or Moon
    ?————————-Hibbert or CDR or Dorsey or Mbah A Moute

    In terms of:

    A. Which one would have a better chance of advancing in this year’s NBA playoffs?


    B. Which one would be considered superior, as the foundation for a long term run of excellence in the upper echelon of the NBA?

    I’ll be more than willing to accept whatever answer you then say that GM sends you back.


    re: the Raptors need for a stronger perimeter defender

    The Raptors already have that Wing player on their roster.

    His name is Joey Graham.

    At the PG-spot … Royal Ivey would fill this bill to a tee.

    As a Big … this is actually one of Kris Humphries best attributes.



    I appeciate your thoughtful comment and your open-mindedness.

    Please feel free to drop by and contribute here any time. 🙂

  12. Travis Outlaw Says:

    RE: Because you might not know very much about either Carney or Ivey … or be able to see the legitimate ability of players like Moon, Humphries & Graham … does not mean that they would have been incapable of helping last year’s team improve on its 41-41 record this season, minus the antics of Mr. Ford and with the increased PT for Mr. Calderon.
    What makes you think so highly of Rodney Carney, Royal Ivey? Most NBA fans consider Rodney Carney drafted #16 a bust. Royal Ivey was a second round steal but isn’t anything special. Plus he punched Aaron Gray in the nuts. Both would not help the Raptors much. But of course you could say any player in the NBA that hasn’t played to his potential or just plain sucks could help the Raptors. Remember you wrote Julius Hodge could help the Raptors. You seem to change your mind now. 🙂 I have also never said anything bad about Moon, Humphries & Graham.

    Bryan Colangelo traded for Jermaine O’Neal to take a chance on a former 6 time all-star. To satisfy Chris Bosh so he’ll have a star to play with. If Jermaine O’Neal is healthy and plays like he did in his all-star days in Indiana then the Raptors are a top five team in the east. And could go deep in the playoffs. While Nesterovic who was on the Raptors for two years is just a solid center that can contribute a little bit. If you look at the fact that TJ Ford needed to go and this gave Jose Calderon more minutes. And that Nesterovic is nothing special and can be replaced easily. And that #17 rookies in their first season don’t usually make a huge impact on a team. Then you could easily say that the trade between Indiana and the Raptors was a equal and good trade for both teams.

    RE: Delfino went to Europe because the Raptors could not pay him a comparable salary … given the $21 million per year they were now committing to pay Jermaine O’Neal. Secondarily, there was also a report of a chemistry issue with his role on last year’s team.
    Garbajosa was BOUGHT OUT of the remaining years on his contract …[i] to open up cap space, and [ii] bring closure to the team’s lawsuit against the Spanish Basketball Federation, re: his recurring leg injury/rehab.
    – If Delfino and Garbajosa wanted to leave and left to play in Russia. How is this Bryan Colangelo’s fault? Delfino left to get more money. While Garbajosa who demanded a buyout to leave. There not even in the NBA anymore. You can’t except to Bryan Colangelo who works in the NBA to compete with other international organizations. Thus, you shouldn’t even include them in your TEAM 2 example.

  13. Project Says:

    Thanks for the explanation Khandor. Now I see why the trade worked last year on the trade checker. Carney played for Philadelphia last year, a team that had around $10 million in cap space at the time, so the trade didn’t have to match salaries. If you check the trade checker now with that same trade, and with Carney being on Minnesota, it wouldn’t work as Minnesota is about $5 million over the cap and the salaries would have to be within 75% of each other.

    Now just to reflect on Travis Outlaw’s last post, it’s hard to consider a guy a bust when his career high in minutes for a season is about 17 per game I believe, and that was in his rookie year. I’m sure if Carney got the minutes now, especially in Minnesota, he would be able to contribute nicely.

  14. Travis Outlaw Says:

    Rodney Carney was drafted #16 which is extremely high and over much better players Rajon Rondo, Renaldo Balkman, Josh Boone, Jordan Farmar, Daniel Gibson, Leon Powe. Rodney Carney is no longer a rookie and has played for two years averaging 6.6 his rookie season and 5.8 his second season and this year 2.9 in only 7 games. This is because Carney is not getting enough playing time. But whether he sucks, not getting enough playing time, injury, offcourt issues thats what I consider a bust.

  15. khandor Says:


    re: it’s hard to consider a guy a bust when his career high in minutes for a season is about 17 per game I believe, and that was in his rookie year. I’m sure if Carney got the minutes now, especially in Minnesota, he would be able to contribute nicely.

    You are right on the money with that observation.

    Rodney Carney is exactly the type of under-valued 2nd Round Draft pick with a very workable contract and high end NBA athleticism that a top notch GM in this League should be looking to add to his roster … if there’s a perception that what is missing from his team is a young athletic dynamic Wing player who can defend & rebound that position at this level, and in all likelihood is still going to get a lot better as he continues to mature over the next few years [and perhaps develops his shooting stroke a tad more to go with the physical gifts he’s got right now].

    Top Notch organizations are built by GM’s who make it their business to FIND and ADD guys like Rodney Carney to their roster … not guys like Fred Jones, Jason Kapono, Maceo Baston, Hassan Adams, Will Solomon, etc.

  16. khandor Says:


    * Bosh never asked Colangelo to satisfy a request like that. To suggest that is pure conjecture.

    * Most so-called NBA experts don’t know very much about the NBA game.

    * What most so-called NBA experts or Raptors Fans think about Rodney Carney & Royal Ivey is inconsequential to me.

    You are free to hold your own opinions. I won’t try to change them.

    Have a terrific weekend!

  17. Raps Defender Says:

    I have a hard time believing that these players listed above makes this Raptors team better than a) the team last year or b) better than this years team. I am not the only one, considering the other posts and points of view.

    The fun of debating. It hard to say we should have traded TJ for carney because capimatically it worked. We all seem to forget that Philly already had/s a shot first point guard in Andre Miller. Miller is better, career wise, than TJ in all categories other than age and 3pt %.
    TJ (25 yrs)
    12ppg, 6.8 apg, 3rpg, 42.7%fg (31.8% 3pt)
    Miller (32)
    14ppg, 7.4 apg, 4 rpg, 45.8% (20.5%)
    The need to add cap to take Ford just wasn’t an option. They had to resign Iguadala, a restricted free-agent, to a new deal, as well as find a way to pry Elton Brand away from the Clippers (which I am sure they had talks well beforehand). Also, since Miller makes 10 mil, it would not be an option to lock up 17 mil in 2 point guards before signing Iggy.

    Along those lines, with the great play of TJ last season, as well as the crushing defeat at the hands of a much bigger and better Orlando Magic, which shut down Bosh, the need was to trade for more interior defence and scoring. Other options were Gerald Wallace, who Colangelo said was on the table. Would he have been better? That’s another debate.

    The fact is, with a player like TJ Ford as your asset to move, why trade down for Carney in a one for one?

    There are more intangibles to this as well. I like Rasho, but there is a reason why he has been traded from everyplace he has been. If you watch the Orlando series, you saw why. although 7 feet tall, has never been a 15-10 guy, or even a 10-10 guy (only avg 11 pts once in 10 years or more than 8 rebs). He is slow, could not defend Howard or produce offensively in the playoffs (4 pts, 2 rebs a game in 15 min) An upgrade was needed and we can all agree that JO is an upgrade.

    I think fans in TO, myself included, after waiting for Bargnani, did not want another project like Carney or Ivey, and give time for them to develop into something, if they do at all (Carney seems to have taken a step backwards, Ivey the same, but bnoth play less minutes) The time was now for a deal, a big deal to land an allstar or close to it calibre player. One who can score, defend and take the load off Bosh. We have that player in JO.

    I agree that the price tag is steep, but it remains that, and we all seem to forget, that if this experiment busts, and I know you Khandor believe it will, that 20 mil comes off the cap at the same time that CB4 goes ito free agency. That 20 mil can go a long way to signing some big name players in that unbelievable crop of 2010. Will Bosh want to stay is another question for another debate.

    As far as Delfino and Garbo go, once Garbo decided to turn his back on the Raps, who said not to play and he did and reaggrivated his injury, there was no way Bryco was letting him back here again. Period. Delfino was a money thing. They didnt want to be over the threshold for cap for delfino. I also heard the chemistry debate.

  18. Raps Defender Says:

    To add to the extra cap in 2010 after JO`s contract is done, PHD Steve on Raptorstalk.com just discussed how LeBron and Bosh are going to play together in 2010 and that it is not a matter if but of where they will play. Toronto will have the space, capimatically for LeBron.

  19. khandor Says:

    Raps Defender,

    First off … Welcome aboard! 🙂


    Almost never do I expect a fellow Raptors’ fan to agree with my perspective on the game or, specifically, this team.

    1. Andre Miller is a pass-first PG.

    2. If the 76ers had acquired Ford this past summer, if would have put them in a position of strength at the PG-spot, now and down the road … with Miller [veteran starter], Ford [younger back-up] and Louis Williams [younger combo 1 & 2]. That’s the kind of situation in which a shrewd GM, like Ed Stefanksi, could do some serious damage, as he’s looking to upgrade his team from “pretty good playoff contender” to “real deal threat to make the Finals”, in the next two years.

    3. If they acquire Mr. Ford … who knows, maybe they don’t re-up with Iggy at all and, instead, turn their attention elsewhere.

    4. Ford’s play was not outstanding last season.

    5. The Magic didn’t beat the Raptors in the playoffs last season because Toronto lacked size in its front-court and needed to improve its interior defense and scoring.

    6. The Magic beat the Raptors in that series because their guard and forward play dominated Toronto’s … with the exception of Jose Calderon, whose decision-making skills with the ball are strictly first-rate.

    7. There is no way whatsoever Philly would have turned down THAT deal if it had been offerred to them. TJ Ford, straight-up, for Rodney Carney? No Way, in the world.

    8. The only team that would have turned that specific deal down … was the Raptors’ of Bryan Colangelo … as the GM of the team that chose to re-up Mr. Ford during the fall of 2007.

    9. If you think TJ Ford was a huge asset amongst the Raptors’ available resources … you’re entitled to hold that opinion. Think of this however. What other offers did the Pacers get for their former 6-time All-Star, with a history of injuries? That they were willing to accept in return a player with a congential spinal defect which has caused him to be carried off the court on a stretcher on more than one occasion, thus far, in the course of his still young NBA career?

    10. IMO, the deal-making aspect of this trade from Philly’s POV was the inclusion of Rasho Nesterovic’s expiring contract AND the flip-flop of 1st & 2nd Round Draft Picks this summer. FACT IS … if I’m the Pacers and the Raptors actually want to make THIS specific deal, for a player who I am actively trying to get rid of, I’m asking where and how fast you need me to sign on the dotted line.

    11. As a major distraction on last year’s team … it is understandable that the Raptors’ brass felt the need to get rid of Mr. Ford … but the simple truth of the matter is that they DID NOT NEED to get a high calibre player back in return. How come I can say this with assurance? Because they didn’t end up getting a high calibre player back in the end, regardless. i.e. Jermaine O’Neal is no longer a high calibre player in this League. What Jermaine O’Neal is today … is a highly serviceable player like, e.g. Antonio McDyess, or Rasho Nesterovic, or [heaven forbid, Rodney Carney, who has a solid upside in the NBA, if he can get himself to a team that requires his specific skill set, which the T-Wolves do not].

    12. Nesterovic needed to be the back-up Center for the Raptors; not the player who they sent out to check Dwight Howard.

    13. Chris Bosh is the Center for this team. Bosh might struggle vs Dwight Howard; but, Dwight Howard might struggle vs CB4, as well. Basically, if playe right by each team, it’s an even match-up.

    14. You don’t pay $21 Million/yr for a back-up Center in the NBA, who once was an All-Star player.

    15. Carney and/or Ivey are solid young improving players in this League. The FACT that you might not who they are or what their respective game’s entail does not mean that they would not be of tremendous help to this current team … say, in place of Will Solomon or Hassan Adams or Jason Kapono. The reality is … it is not even close between the two players I’m suggesting and the current Raptors’ names in that previous sentence.

    16. If Ivey was the Raptors back-up PG right now, this team might be sitting with a 12-4 record right now, instead of 8-8; and, if Carney was here as well, that mark might be even better still.

    17. Cap space is irrelavent in the NBA. Did Boston have a tonne of cap space last season? How about the Spurs before that? Or, the Heat the year before? Or, any other NBA championship team you’d care to mention? It’s the players you have on your roster that determines how far your team goes in the NBA playoffs on an annual basis, in conjunction with your coaching, your GM and ownership. The Timberwolves got the cap space, alright but it was the Celtics that got the Title.

    18. At no point did Garbajosa ever say that he was not willing or interested in playing for the Raptors. It was the Raptors who turned their backs on Garbo, not the other way around. Both in Phoenix and Toronto, Bryan Colangelo has repeatedly shown what his preferred M.O. is when dealing with tricky/sticky situations that arise involving different players on his rosters, e.g. J-Kidd-for-Marbury, Joe Johnson-for-Diaw, Ford+Nesterovic+Baston+No.17/2008-forO’Neal+No.41/2008 and Garbo’s buyout. To this point, I have seen no evidence that indicates he is prepared to work through a difficult situation … for example, what happend with the Lakers during the summer of 2007 and Kobe Bryant’s demand to be traded … in the best interests of his team, when it comes to being a legitimate contender for an NBA Championship.

  20. Travis Outlaw Says:

    On #18 didn’t he turn J-Kidd-for-Marbury into Steve Nash? Joe Johnson-for-Diaw didn’t Diaw become the most improved player? And got two unprotected first round draft picks in return. The Suns were #1 in the West. Colangelo is one of the best GM’s in the league.

    RE: what happend with the Lakers during the summer of 2007 and Kobe Bryant’s demand to be traded … in the best interests of his team, when it comes to being a legitimate contender for an NBA Championship.

    -While Mitch Kupchak is not. No matter how good the Lakers record is now. Mitch traded Shaq. Traded Caron Butler for Kwame Brown. Settled for Smush Parker as the starting point guard over much better point guards out there. And only got lucky last year with Pau Gasol. Who the Grizzlies basically gave away for nothing.

  21. Travis Outlaw Says:

    As for TJ Ford if Bryan Colangelo never traded Charlie Villanueva for TJ Ford. Could the Raptors even make the playoffs these two years in a row? Would the Raptors even be a playoff team today if it not for TJ Ford? TJ Ford put the Raptors back on the map. He deserves some credit. And if he starts for the Pacers there going to be a good team as well. And so far they are.

    Khandor, why exactly Rodney Carney? Why not any other player who’s athletic has potential but doesn’t play much. Like Gerald Green, Maurice Ager, Kirk Synder, Dahntay Jones, Shannon Brown, Julius Hodge 🙂 etc. Or how about Bonzi Wells who’s currently a free agent.

  22. khandor Says:


    Mark Cuban and Steve Nash, respectively, were responsible for the return of Captain Planet to the Suns’ orbit … not Bryan Colangelo.

    i.e. Cuban decided that his Mavs’ chances of winning an NBA title someday would be better off with a different sort of PG at the helm than Nash, at the salary he was asking. Cuban was right, see the Mavs lone trip to the Finals. When spurned by Cuban, Nash decided to return home to the Phoenix area where his wife and young family never stopped residing even after his initial trade, by Colangelo, to Dallas. The bulk of Suns’ relative success in the 7 Seconds or Less era belongs to Steve Nash and Mike D’Antoni, IMO, not to the Colangelos [Sr. or Jr.].

    With JJ on their roster, maybe the Suns beat the Spurs in ensuing years; maybe not. One thing we now know for sure is … that w/o JJ, and instead with Monsieur Diaw and those picks, Phoenix never even made it to the NBA Finals during the years in which they were led on the floor by the dynamic combination of Robin [Nash] & Batman [Stat], in their vaunted 4 out/1 in no hods barred attack, which was truly a shame, IMO. Btw, what those JJ-less teams were able to accomplish, however, was stay under the salary cap and make their principal owners a swack of serious coin in the Valley of THe Sun. Sound familiar Kool-Aid drunken fans in MLSE Nation?

    The FACT IS … an outstanding NBA coach like Jerry Sloan has yet to win his 1st COTY Award; and, yet, somehow a certain type of Raptors’ fan will repeatedly bring up the fact that Bryan Colangelo MUST BE, by definition, one of the Best Executives in the NBA … BECAUSE HE IS A 2-TIME RECIPIENT OF THE LEAGUE’S EOTY AWARD, which is voted upon annually by the other execs in the League, and not even by a panel of media representatives across NA. Sorry, but this fact, alone, holds no bearing in my book when it comes to evaluating the strength of an excutive’s work in this League. B Colangelo is not a bad GM; but, neither is he one of the best in the NBA. What he is … is ‘average’; nothing more and nothing less than that.

    Making the playoffs these past two years? … is worth absolutely nothing, in my book, as an original Raptors’ fan and an NBA aficionado going back for 40 years.

    If the team had missed the playoffs … and been able to say categorically today …

    We are now on pace to win our 1st NBA championship in the not-too-distant future

    that would be far superior to me, than where it sits today, having just …

    * Fired their head coach
    * Hired the former head coach of the Canadian Men’s National Team, as his replacement
    * Acquired a $21 Million/yr former all-star with a history of leg injuries
    * Recently acquired a $5 Million/yr one-dimensional over-paid player whose a defensive and rebounding liability each and every time he steps onto the court, despite the fact that he’s a non-ball-handling guard/forward in the NBA
    * Recently traded away their back-up Center, who had an expiring contract for this season
    * Recently traded away their 2008 No. 17 Draft Pick for a player with an existing heart condition that, heaven forbid might end up keeping him out of the NBA entirely
    * the actual list can go on considerably further … but let’s just agree to stop here, shall we?

    and sitting at-present with a 8-9 W-L record, in the season during which the team’s President/GM said publically [in the pre-season] that this roster represents “THE MOST TALENTED TEAM HE’S PUT TOGETHER THUS FAR for the Toronto Raptors”.

    To which I say, “Oh, really?”

    methinks, possibly, not.

    [please see the roster for the 2006-2007 team posted elsewhere on this blog]

    There’s no credible back-up PG.
    There’s no credible back-up C.
    There’s no 1st Round Draft Pick from the 2007 and the 2008 NBA Drafts.

    Put me in the select group that doesn’t happen to think that both the Lakers’ and the Celtics’ GM’s got unbelievably lucky last season. In my book, luck is the residue of design.

    The Indiana Pacers are 7-11, with their loss to Boston tonight. In part, that’s just how good TJ Ford actually is … which is to say … by that measuring stick all alone, the FACT IS he worse than Jose Calderon, and the Raptors, at least, made the right decision about which of last year’s 2 PG’s to deal and which one to keep.

    How come Rodney Carney?

    Because he actually fit what the Raptors SHOULD have been looking to add to their team in place of TJ Ford during the lead-up to the 2008 NBA Draft, in a 1-for-1 scenario under the League’s trading rules and in terms of what their trading partner would actually be willing to deal for in a transaction which nets them a PG with a congential defect in his spinal column.

    That’s the long and short of it. 😉

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: