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Old 02-22-2011, 08:16 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Join Date: Dec 2007
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Arrow Chisholm: Nothing seems to happen at the right time for Raps

Why does it seem like in the Bryan Colangelo era, the Toronto Raptors are forced to make big, franchise-altering decisions at the worst possible times? To whit:

June 28, 2006 - Armed with their first number-one overall pick in team history, Raptors face one of the weakest draft classes in six years. They ultimately select Andrea Bargnani, who has proven to be one of the stronger selections from that class, but he is not the franchise-altering talent that teams like Orlando, Chicago and the Clippers got with their first-overall selections.

June 30, 2006 - Feeling they needed a starting-caliber point guard, the Raptors trade their biggest trade asset, Charlie Villanueva, to Milwaukee for T.J. Ford, only to discover early in the 2006-07 season that Jose Calderon would emerge as a legit point guard in his second year, negating somewhat the need for Ford.

April 24, 2007 - Sam Mitchell wins Coach of the Year, ostensibly forcing the team to re-sign him as head coach despite the team's need for an upgrade at the position. His contract expired at the perfect time for the team to go out and hire a more experienced replacement to take the team to the next level, but Mitchell's COY award made losing him look like a worse PR gaffe than signing him back. He was fired eighteen months later.

July 9, 2009 - Armed with a truckload of cap space to use in one last attempt to field a competitive supporting cast for free-agent-to-be Chris Bosh, Toronto signs the best free agent on the market, Hedo Turkoglu, despite his age and questionable fit with the team. Despite the previous year offering guys like Josh Smith and Monta Ellis and the subsequent year offering the bounty of the FA class of 2010, 2009 was a weak year and the Raps were forced to buy in a seller's market in an attempt to retain their star. Hedo was traded away a year later.

Spring 2011 - Bryan Colangelo is up for a contract extension, but no one yet knows how well equipped he is to lead the Raptors through their current rebuilding process. That is the subject now up for further investigation.

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