ESPN's Expert Picks Re: Raptors
Old 10-21-2008, 03:12 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default ESPN's Expert Picks Re: Raptors

The general consensus with all of them seem to be that we'll finishing 3rd in the Atlantic and 6th overall in the Eastern Conference.

Here's what they all had to say:

Quote:
Originally Posted by ESPN.com
J.A. Adande ESPN.com

ATLANTIC: 3 | EAST: 6 At times, Chris Bosh did all the big-man chores on the U.S. Olympic team -- imagine how productive he'll be with Jermaine O'Neal around to help out in Toronto. But the thin backcourt will hurt them come playoff time.

Jon Barry ESPN.com

ATLANTIC: 2 | EAST: 5 Can Bosh and O'Neal coexist? Calderon now has the reins and is one of the more underrated point guards in the league. Kapono just doesn't get enough opportunities out there.

Chris Broussard ESPN Mag

ATLANTIC: 3 | EAST: 6 O'Neal doesn't need to be great to justify the trade, but if he is, there could be another East contender. If he's near pre-injury form, that's a legit Twin Towers (with Bosh). And only the foolish will give up on Bargnani this early.

Ric Bucher ESPN Mag

ATLANTIC: 2 | EAST: 3 Nothing invigorates a team quite like a risky blockbuster offseason deal. (See Celtics, 2007.) Not that Jermaine O'Neal is KG, but GM Bryan Colangelo has sent a message: We're going for it. I have to believe Chris Bosh and Jose Calderon heard him.

Chad Ford ESPN.com

ATLANTIC: 3 | EAST: 6 To me, the Raptors are the East's sleeper. Another All-Star year by Chris Bosh and another great season by Jose Calderon will be critical. If Jermaine O'Neal returns to anything near All-Star form, the Raptors will win often.

Jemele Hill ESPN.com

ATLANTIC: 3 | EAST: 7 If Jermaine O'Neal can stay healthy, Chris Bosh will have a superstar season. Jose Calderon entrenched at point makes a huge difference in floor chemistry. If they play defense consistently, they are talented enough to be a top four seed.

John Hollinger ESPN.com

ATLANTIC: 3 | EAST: 6 Jermaine O'Neal is a spent force offensively, but his defense will be huge for a team that has lacked backbone in the middle. Plus, he saves Chris Bosh some pounding. Alas, a lack of dynamic wings and shaky depth mean the Raps are one-and-done again.

Jalen Rose ESPN.com

ATLANTIC: 3 | EAST: 6 Jose Calderon takes care of the ball and plays well on both ends. Raps will shoot the 3 very well with Kapono, Parker and Bargnani. Bosh will be an All-NBA pick and Jermaine O'Neal is hungry to show he can still play at an All-Star level.

Chris Sheridan ESPN.com

ATLANTIC: 3 | EAST: 6 Will be interesting to see how Chris Bosh and Jermaine O'Neal co-exist on the low blocks, and we expect to see them struggle when Roko Ukic is running the show behind Jose Calderon. They could crack the top four if they are dominant at home.

Marc Stein ESPN.com

ATLANTIC: 3 | EAST: 6 In spite of J. O'Neal's injury history, pairing him with Bosh and making it clear that this is Calderon's team to run ... I'm sold on Toronto's new three-man core. But I wonder how much help they'll get.
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Old 10-21-2008, 03:18 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Jalen's comments are about as accurate and insightful as his defensive decisions.

And that aint all that good.

Still love the guy, but he can't STILL be jaded can he?
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Old 10-21-2008, 03:18 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Quote:
Chris Sheridan ESPN.com

ATLANTIC: 3 | EAST: 6 Will be interesting to see how Chris Bosh and Jermaine O'Neal co-exist on the low blocks, and we expect to see them struggle when Roko Ukic is running the show behind Jose Calderon. They could crack the top four if they are dominant at home.
I could go for that. It was their play at home in particular that I found lacking last season. If they can clean that up and find a true identity, then being fourth or fifth should work out ok as long as they are rolling by playoff time.
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Old 10-21-2008, 05:00 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I like Ric's the best out of all of them
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Old 10-21-2008, 05:04 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Superjudge View Post
Jalen's comments are about as accurate and insightful as his defensive decisions.

And that aint all that good.

Still love the guy, but he can't STILL be jaded can he?
I surprised he didnt make comment regarding Smitch...
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Old 10-21-2008, 05:15 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I would have to agree with the consensis:

Atlantic:

Boston
Philly
Toronto

East:

Boston
Orlando
Cleveland
Philly
Detroit
Toronto
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Old 10-21-2008, 06:01 PM   #7 (permalink)
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wow.

I watched Philly.

Brand isnt so great that he makes them so much better.

I think it's just standard practice that anytime Toronto is judged in these things, they don't get the benefit of the doubt with many people.

I mean every fucking review you see is still saying "if Oneal is healthy" and using tht as a measuring stick.

Jesus, turn on a television, read an interview, the guy dropped 20 and 11 the other night in under 30 mins.

I dont get it.
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Old 10-21-2008, 06:52 PM   #8 (permalink)
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I agree with the consensus, I think we're 6th best. I think the difference this year though is that the East took a big step forward and is closing in on the West, I think they'll be 6 teams with 48 wins or more this year, maybe 6 with 50+. On that note too I think the conference will be squished up like the West last year, I don't think anybody's going over 55.
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Old 10-21-2008, 07:06 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Orlando got no love... 4th on every list. The possibility of Howard actually developing some offensive moves is scary.
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Old 10-21-2008, 07:41 PM   #10 (permalink)
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im not even gonna bother reading that shit.
we're fucking better than philly!

i'm a fucking analyst too! ATLANTIC: 2 | EAST: 4
how's that?! jermaine and Bosh can co-exist and Calderon will fly through anyone at ease.
kapono and parker will kill anyone with their sexy smooth shots.
bargnani will improve enough to make a difference and so will fucking joey fucking graham.

there you go! i'm an analyst!!!! hear me roar!!!!!!!!!!
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Old 10-21-2008, 07:46 PM   #11 (permalink)
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I definitely don't agree with the consensus. Raptors have gained a lot of ground by adding JO and by developing Bargnani. I guess their SF is a bit of a question mark right now, but it's not like they don't have any talent: Kapono was great in the playoffs and Moon will most likely get into a groove afew games into the season. I don't believe that the Sixers are stronger than them, and I don't think they're going to be in the bottom half of the playoff-qualifying teams. I'm thinking 2/4
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