Can Raps GM avoid extinction?
Our experts reflect on how Bryan Colangelo can rebound
After last season’s slump, his handling of the Chris Bosh ordeal and a failure to sign new stars this summer, what does Raptors GM Bryan Colangelo need to do to keep his job and restore the public’s trust?
MEDIOCRE NOW, MORE NEXT YEAR
If Toronto’s sports history has taught us anything, it’s this: Maybe the worst thing the Raptors can do right now is get too mediocre too fast. Dismal seasons, like the one the Raptors are likely headed for, beget talented draft picks. And this team, as much as it’s stocked with some talented twentysomethings in Andrea Bargnani, Amir Johnson and Sonny Weems, can’t have too many of those.
The challenge for Colangelo is fielding a team that competes hard enough to satisfy a still-rabid fan base — and to secure the GM a new contract — but not well enough to compromise Toronto’s odds for a top pick in the next couple of draft lotteries. No easy feat, but that’s why they pay the guy about $4,000,000 a year.
Dave Feschuk, sports columnist, Toronto Star
USE TALENT FOR FUTURE PICKS
Raptors fans need to accept that this season will be challenging, and GM Bryan Colangelo needs to leverage players — Jose Calderon — for future draft picks. Since the urgency to win a championship isn’t bursting like it is in Miami or Los Angeles, in a way, Bryan Colangelo has time to evaluate the landscape to make the proper decision. Championships weren’t built in a day. There’s no instant gratification on the horizon for Toronto. Keep the money in the bank. Last thing the Raptors need is another deal like the maligned Yogi Stewart transaction.
Cabral “Cabbie” Richards, sports personality, The Score
LAND PLAYER WITH BOSH CASH
Bryan needs to sell hope. He must make sure his coach develops players like DeMar DeRozan, Andrea Bargnani and Ed Davis to the point where they show enough flashes that it makes up for the many games they will lose this season. Eventually he has to get a quality player with the $14.5 million trade exception he received in the Bosh deal.
Ryan Wolstat, sports columnist, Toronto Sun
WORK-IN-PROGRESS NEEDS PATIENCE
I’m quite confident Bryan Colangelo understands that the 2010-11 Raptors are a work-in-progress. This team isn’t winning the 2011 NBA Championships, so put the pieces together that will help you beyond. It will be crucial in year number 16 of the organization to develop the young players within the organization as well as utilizing the salary cap/trade exception flexibility that exists to set the table for sustained growth in the years that follow.
Jack Armstrong, Raptors sportscaster, TSN