Where would the Raptors be today, if …

Following last night’s deflating home loss to the Atlanta Hawks, the conference standings in the East look like this:

Eastern W L PCT GB CONF DIV HOME ROAD L 10 STREAK
Boston1 18 4 0.818 0.0 12-3 5-0 8-3 10-1 9-1 W 9
Orlando2 17 6 0.739 1.5 13-3 3-1 7-2 10-4 7-3 L 2
Atlanta3 16 6 0.727 2.0 9-4 2-2 9-2 7-4 6-4 W 3
Cleveland4 16 7 0.696 2.5 10-5 4-1 9-2 7-5 7-3 W 1
Miami5 11 10 0.524 6.5 7-5 3-2 6-6 5-4 4-6 L 1
Milwaukee6 10 11 0.476 7.5 6-7 2-3 8-3 2-8 2-8 W 1
Detroit7 10 12 0.455 8.0 8-5 1-3 7-4 3-8 5-5 W 4
Charlotte8 9 12 0.429 8.5 8-10 2-2 8-3 1-9 6-4 L 1
Toronto 10 15 0.400 9.5 7-8 0-1 6-5 4-10 3-7 L 2
Chicago 8 13 0.381 9.5 5-8 3-2 6-3 2-10 2-8 W 1
Indiana 7 13 0.350 10.0 5-6 0-1 5-6 2-7 2-8 W 1
Washington 7 13 0.350 10.0 6-10 1-4 4-6 3-7 4-6 L 3
New York 8 15 0.348 10.5 4-10 2-2 4-8 4-7 5-5 W 4
Philadelphia 5 18 0.217 13.5 5-10 3-2 3-8 2-10 0-10 L 12
New Jersey 2 21 0.087 16.5 2-13 0-5 1-8 1-13 2-8 L 2

Prior to the 2009 NBA Draft, however, these were some of the players who were recommended in this space for the Toronto Raptors:

Terrence Williams [OG-SF, New Jersey, 1st Rd]
Earl Clark [SF-PF, Phoenix, 1st Rd]
Derrick Brown [SF-PF, Charlotte, 2nd Rd]
Taj Gibson [PF, Chicago, 1st Rd]
Dante Cunningham [PF, Portland, 2nd Rd]
Marcus Thornton [OG, New Orleans, via Miami, 2nd Rd]
Nando De Colo [OG-SF, San Antonio, 2nd Rd]

Prior to the 4-team trade that involved the Raptors, Magic, Mavericks and Grizzlies, it was also suggested here that Toronto should:

1. Trade Jason Kapono.

2. Either: A. Re-sign Shawn Marion; or, B. Let him walk away, as an UFA.
3. Retain the services of their own Free Agents.
4. Retain the services of useful still-young players like Kris Humphries and Roko Ukic.
5. Retain the services of an experienced, NBA proven and successful head coach who prioritizes Team Defense and Rebounding.

6. Obtain the services of a cost-effective veteran Back-up Point Guard, Combination Off Guard/Small Forward, and Center.

If the Raptors would have followed those recommendations, instead of:

1. Drafting DeMar DeRozan [No. 9, overall]; and,
2. Acquiring the services of Hedo Turkoglu, Jarrett Jack, Antoine Wright, Marco Belinelli, Amir Johnson and Sonny Weems; and,
3. Giving Jay Triano a contract extension.

culminating with a roster that looks like the middle column in the following chart:

TORONTO RAPTORS ROSTER

Role

End 2008-2009

Suggested 2009-2010

Current 2009-2010

STARTERS

1

Jose Calderon

Jose Calderon *

Jose Calderon *

2

Anthony Parker

Anthony Parker *

DeMar DeRozan

3

Shawn Marion

Jamario Moon **

Hedo Turkoglu

4

Chris Bosh

Shawn Marion *

Chris Bosh *

5

Andrea Bargnani

Chris Bosh *

Andrea Bargnani [CE] *

KEY SUBS

6

Roko Ukic

Earl Watson

Jarrett Jack

7

Jason Kapono

Marcus Thornton

Marco Belinelli

8

Joey Graham

Derrick Brown

Antoine Wright

9

Kris Humphries

Kris Humphries *

Reggie Evans

10

Jake Voskuhl

Andrea Bargnani *

Rasho Nesterovic **

RESERVES

11

Quincy Douby

Roko Ukic *

Sonny Weems

12

Pops Mensah-Bonsu

Reggie Evans

Amir Johnson

OTHERS

13

Marcus Banks

Marcus Banks *

Marcus Banks *

14

Nathan Jawai

Joey Graham *

Pops Mensah-Bonsu *

15

Patrick O’Bryant

Rasho Nesterovic **

Patrick O’Bryant *

HC

Jay Triano

Jeff Van Gundy or Avery Johnson

Jay Triano [CE] *

Legend: HC – Head Coach; * – Played with team previous season; ** – Played for Raptors before; UFA – Unrestricted Free Agent; RFA – Restricted Free Agent; Blue – UFA, retained; Purple – RFA, re-acquired; Green – UFA, acquired; Red – 2009 Draft Pick; Orange – Acquired via trade; Brown – RFA, acquired; Turquoise – Signed new head coach; CE – Contract Extension.

————————————————————
 

Would the Raptors have a .500+ W-L Record today, and an improved opportunity to re-sign Chris Bosh [UFA] this coming summer?

View Results

Loading ... Loading ...

————————————————————

Yours truly thinks they would.

It’s by developing and then implementing a sound Basketball Philosophy … which emphasizes the importance of [I] Team Defense, [II] Rebounding, and [III] Shared Team Offense, in this order … maintaining general roster stability, from one season to the next, while acquiring Quality Depth, and obtaining the services of an experienced and successful NBA head coach, that the Raptors would be able to fundamentally alter the direction of their franchise and construct the type of championship-calibre organization which UFA’s like Chris Bosh, Joe Johnson, Dwyane Wade, and LeBron James, etc., would willingly CHOOSE to play for, if they have their druthers, either, this coming off season or further down-the-road.

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

4 Responses to “Where would the Raptors be today, if …”

  1. Brain Colangelo Says:

    1. Marion turned us down.
    2. Jamario is best as an OG according to you.
    3. Moon and Parker both suck. Look at how they perform without Lebron on the floor. Terribly. Anything good that happens when they’re on the floor is only because Lebron is also there. I’d have been happy with Parker in a limited role as a resrerve and a mentor but his play has been awful and he’s not well suited to play the role you’ve set out for him, above.
    4. We’ll need to check in 2 years if your trade down idea would have worked. It would not have helped the 2009/10 Raptors.
    5. Bringing back Hump and Roko would have been fine and less costly than Jack. I like Amir better, though, and think the Amir trade was a good move. Hump replaces Evans, not Amir. That was a good move.
    6. Bosh’s decision would have been the same.
    7. I spoke to BC. He’ll step down if you agree to take the reigns.

  2. Dave Says:

    (1) Above .500 … a 45 win team that could easily be improved further

    (2) Marginal difference. Slight improvement but an insignificant difference.

    I think the Raptors would need to be up above 50+ wins to make a substantial difference to Bosh’s decision to stay or go.

  3. Dave Says:

    I think a lot of that improvement is down to Bargnani’s bench role …

    If you switch Bargnani out of the starting lineup in favour of Amir Johnson. Then have the changes with Jarrett Jack, Hedo Turkoglu and DeMar DeRozan. How does that team (Calderon + DD + Hedo + Amir + Bosh) compare to your suggested roster? I think those two teams would be fairly comparable to one another.

    Thus, the main difference isn’t the personnel changes but the role of Andrea Bargnani.

    The personnel changes were largely lateral moves.

  4. Scott G Says:

    Hmmm…. not a lot of outside shooting on that roster. But A LOT better in other areas. Definitely a better team than we have now, that’s for sure. But how much $ would it have taken to convince the Matrix to remain up north? Methinks more than it took to convince him to join the Mavs… maybe even as much as it took to re-up Bargs… oh the irony.

Leave a Reply