It appears as if the poster has subconsciously wooed us into his personal BP cloud drive. This is genius.
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HAHA it seems that this hread has slowly become more of a flashdrive! oh goodness
Raptors Free Agency
The Raptors have a history of acquiring exciting athletes, and the trend continued when they acquired 6’8 SF Rudy Gay from the Grizzlies. Like those before him, he is thought to be the franchise savior and bring serious basketball hopes to fans up north. When I first heard the move I was a little surprised because I thought they were in more of a rebuilding mode and were continuing their youth movement. Gay certainly isn’t old but the 26 year old swingman is more of a veteran. This, along with the fact they traded their draft pick to the Thunder this year leads me to believe that the time is NOW beyond the border.
With the loss of their draft selection, the Raptors may have to make some serious acquisitions if they plan on entering the eastern conference playoff race. Their starting line-up looks solid and consists of the following:
PG- Kyle Lowry
SG- Demar Derozan
SF- Rudy Gay
PF- Amir Johnson
C- Jonas Valanciunas
This starting line-up is certainly a start for the team but I feel that an impact player to bang around the rim could really help the organization in their pursuit of the playoffs. Power forward Amir Johnson is a nice big man to have on your roster….if he is coming off the bench. Amir had a pretty good season last year but isn’t a player that is going to take you to the next level. I think the Raptors should keep him to help back up stud 22 year old Jonas Valanciunas and DWIGHT HOWARD. Just kidding.
With their young dynamic backcourt, the Raptors are going to need a player who 1. Rebounds and 2. Can score with a ball dominant player such as Rudy Gay. A player who needs the ball in his hands and has the offense run through him, will not succeed with this team. As for studs who are currently on the roster such as, Aaron Gray, Linas Kleiza, and Andrea Bargnani, the future is bleak in terms of rotational big men. That’s why I see them pursuing some of the top 2013 FA’s.
Paul Millsap- This Utah Jazz PF is on his way out of Salt Lake City to make way for Derrick Favors and Enes Kanter. He has been a very consistent scorer and rebounder but has been overlooked because he plays in a small market. Battling in the extremely tough western conference he has held his own with averages of 16.1 PPG and 7.9 RPG over the last three years. He gets the majority of his points by battling on the boards and hitting mid-range jumpers. This will make it easier for Kyle Lowry to get assists and Rudy Gay to get to the basket by spacing the court.
J.J Hickson- Another player who quietly puts up very productive stats, the Portland PF will be looking for a big pay day this offseason. In an expanded role the 24 year old stated all 80 games he played for the Blazers and was one of the only players to have a season average of a double-double (12.7 PPG and 10.4 RPG.) he would provide a good source of scoring and rebounding, but wouldn’t be forced to shoulder the load offensively or defensively. He has played form a number of teams in his short career and would adjust well to the pace and style of the Raptors offense. In my opinion Hickson is the perfect FA for this team and is the best overall fit.
Cheaper, Rotational big men-
Byron Mullens- In some capacity brings similar things that Bargnani brings to the table. Can be excessive with the poor shot selection, but with proper coaching and him understanding his role, could be a decent long ball threat off the bench.
Jason Maxiell- Somewhat of a poor man’s Hickson, Maxiell is another player who will battle on the glass with his limited minutes off the bench. He can also be a productive low-post scorer if used correctly.
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