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Old 01-26-2011, 06:54 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Chisholm: Rebuilding the Raptors isn't pretty

The Raptors are jettisoning veteran players like Jarrett Jack and Peja Stojakovic, taking flyers on young, cheap prospects like Jerryd Bayless, Joey Dorsey, Julian Wright and Alexis Ajinca. They are forcing young prospects like Andrea Bargnani, DeMar DeRozan, Ed Davis and Amir Johnson to play through their mistakes, hoping that it will accelerate their development. They are shedding salary owed to players like Turkoglu and Jack in an attempt to clear their major cap obligations over the next year or two. They are attempting to turn their assets and bargaining chips into draft picks, while also hoping that their own first-round pick this year reaches maximum value. When you do all of these things, though, how the Raptors have been playing is what results, and you can expect more of the same until at least April.

The club has been savvy about grabbing young guys like Bayless, Wright and Dorsey, each of whom have shown flashes and have given the team some options going forward. Outside of the roster, the team could wind up shedding as much as $30-million off of their cap at the end of the season, and while no one knows how the new CBA will affect how much of that will be spendable, the team is in a much better place than most to maneuver any upcoming changes. Currently the Raptors do not employ a single player that makes eight-figures this year or next year, and only Andrea Bargnani represents a contract that is worth more than $30-million guaranteed over its lifetime. Plus, young staples like DeRozan and Davis are still years away from having a potentially lucrative extension bargained for and kick-in, so the Raptors have some time to spend their money wisely.
Chisholm: Rebuilding the Raptors isn't pretty, but necessary
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