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Old 05-17-2012, 08:18 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Lamond Murray talks about the Raptors franchise

Hasan Alanam:*Your stay in Toronto didn’t go as well as people expected it to. Talk a little bit about your stay in Toronto.

Lamond Murray: For the first time in my career, whether its high school, college, or the NBA, I had a devastating foot injury when I first got here. I had to deal with the recovery from that injury, which was a ligament tear in my right foot, similar to tearing the ACL in your knee. Just that alone, recovering from that surgery for a whole year in my first season in Toronto derailed everything that I’ve worked hard for, all the momentum that I’ve built over the years. I wasn’t the same player when I came back from that injury and I already had 8-9 years in the league.

That had the most impact on my stay in Toronto, along with the coaching changes. We had three different coaches in the three years that I was in Toronto. You have a situation where I was battling back from injury and trying to find my place on the team that was constantly changing.

Hasan Alanam:*Have you been following the current Raptors squad?

Lamond Murray: Yeah, somewhat. I think what’s going in Toronto is, they are using a lot of the international guys from across the world because Toronto does have an international flavour in terms of the various communities. People in Toronto come from all different places, which is one thing I loved being in Toronto. You can have Little Italy on one side of town and Chinatown on the other side of town. It was a melting pot of all the different cultures. There were people from Jamaica and from all across the world in Toronto. The team is a microcosm of the city. They do a great job in their marketing campaigns, getting people to come out to the games.

In terms of players, they have a lot of young guys that are trying to find their way in the league. It is going to take a while for them to get a cohesive unit together and go out there and perform at a high level in order to get back into the playoffs.

Hasan Alanam:*Is there a stigma attached to Toronto amongst NBA players?

Lamond Murray: There used to be a stigma similar to what went on with the Clippers. If you are a veteran player and you get traded to Toronto, and you are on your last legs in the league, they basically sent you to Siberia to finish off your career. It used to be the same thing with the Clippers.

However I think things are changing, the game has evolved and people don’t look at the teams like that anymore. I think Toronto has done a great job of bringing the right people in the front office and got some stability going on there with the franchise. As long as they keep bringing in players to add to their core group of players, they will be able to compete.

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