The Raptors have only been in existence for 10 years but in that time one has to look at this off-season as the single greatest any Raptor General Manager has ever been able to achieve.
What Bryan Colangelo has done, with a limited amount of options, has been nothing short of miraculous.
And the miracle is extensive:
- They got their guy in Jay Triano; a young and talented coach who has the players’ ears. Not to mention he also Canadian.
- He signed the assistant he wanted n Mark Ivaroni; A defensive specialist from the Phoenix Suns’ glory days.
- He turned a under producing pure shooter in Jason Kapono, into Reggie Evans, a tough as nails, lunch pail worker – something the team surely lacked in 2008.
- He got what some would call is the biggest steal in the draft in Demar DeRozen. Filling a much needed gap for athleticism.
- He signed Andrea Bargnani to a very modest 10 million a year.
- He signed Hedo Turkoglu arguably the biggest free agent on the market.
However, the signing of Turkoglu essentially put the team right at the cap with many holes to fill. Leaving the Raptors up a shallow creek and many critics to cry foul.
But not so fast.
Colangelo somehow convinced Orlando (and Memphis and Dallas) to complete a complicated sign and trade deal involving Shawn Marion and the Big Turk, and in doing so allowed the Raps to obtain both their MLE and LLE, essentially freeing up an additional 12 million dollars in cap space to sign whoever they want. On top of that, the team received Devon George and Antoine Wright in the transaction. two very serviceable players filling in the holes at the shooting guard and small forward position.
What that all mean? Essentially they traded Shawn Marion (and Nathan Jawai) for Hedo Turkoglu, Devon George, Antoine Wright. Jarrett Jack, and Rasho Nesterovich.
Toss in Carlos Delfino to sign with our Bird Rights and ladies and gentlemen we have one of the deepest teams in the league with a significantly talented starting five.
Hello Mr Colangelo. Thank you for coming to Toronto.
Where does that leave the Raptors moving forward? Well, if I were a guessing man, and I am, I wouldn’t be all that surprised to see Bryan Colangelo re-approach Chris Bosh with a contract extension this summer. Particularly if BC is able to wiggle Jarrett Jack away from the Pacers (Chris Bosh’s best friend in the league).
Given the economic climate and the league’s prediction that the cap will fall significantly in one years’ time, Chris Bosh will listen. He’d be foolish not to.
If Colaneglo is able to re-sign Chris Bosh you might as well award him Executive of the Year now, that and the keys to the city.
Catch that fish (all 6 foot 10 of it) and we can all sit back and relax. The Raptors would have a very solid core, locked in place for several years to come, surrounded by some very tradable assets.