07-08-2009, 05:08 PM
Captain of the Jamario Moon fan club.
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Electric Avenue
RealGM: Locking Up Bargnani And Turkoglu Creates Win-Win Situation
What a difference a year makes, after a summer when many fans and most media wanted former 1st overall pick Andrea Bargnani traded, he will now sign a lucrative five-year extension worth approximately $50 million.
For those that believed in him from the start, kudos to you and you’re all invited to my house in wake of this great news.
For those who doubted his skill and his passion, well I’m not going to say “I told you so,” but ...let’s just leave it at that shall we?
This is a contract he clearly deserves after a nice bounce back season and one that will take him into the prime of his career.
For Raptors fans it’s been a great week after it started somewhat sour.
After losing out on free agents Charlie Villanueva and Trevor Ariza, among others, many thought the result would be the same with Hedo Turkoglu. But, a late change of mind by Mrs. Turkoglu regarding Toronto’s multicultural community was enough for Hedo to say “I do” to the Raptors.
His signing has been perceived as somewhat of an overpayment by many, but it’s something I don’t really understand.
As Raptors fans you’ve wanted a marquee player to arrive in Toronto via free agency for years and he may be the best free agent to ever sign with Toronto. But, it costs too much you say, it kills our depth you say.
I find both those statements quite interesting because if you’re not willing to dish out the coin rarely will a free agent of Turkoglu’s stature to sign with your team and are you talking about the same depth that got this team into the playoffs last season?
Oh, right. It didn’t happen.
Sure, he’s not a young guy but you can’t deny the fact that the Raptors now have one of the best starting five in the Eastern Conference and a SF whose talent level is the best the Raptors have had since a certain North Carolina graduate wore Raptors threads.
As to that question of where’s the depth? There’s no question it’s not there, no one can argue that.
At least Bryan Colangelo realized the starting unit needed help. It would’ve been woeful if the Raptors came back with virtually the same line-up that won them 33 games except with a couple rotation additions, most likely bumping up their win total by two to four games at most.
Finding players to fill out the rotation is where Colangelo is going to earn his salary. He needs to find that gem that sneaks through the cracks of free agency. Be it Matt Barnes, Gerald Green or even former Raptor Jamario Moon (as reported by Toronto Star’s Doug Smith). That’s just a few names out there that could potentially be had for bargain basement prices in the coming weeks.
Turkoglu also brings instant recognition around the league. Sure, the Raptors offer was roughly $3 million better over the length of the contract than that of Portland’s, but make no mistake him and his wife chose Toronto the city over Portland the city.
I haven’t even mentioned the fact that Chris Bosh is a free agent in the summer of 2010. With Bargnani and Turkoglu locked up to long-term five-year deals, as a Raptors fan you should feel more comfortable about next summer now more than ever. Because either way it’s a win, win:
1. It shows Bosh that you’re serious about building a contender and are going to support him with some of the best talent available.
2. If Bosh leaves, you still have two big guys you can rely on and plus now have Bosh’s cap space to sign other talent.
It’s been a whirlwind week for fans of the Toronto teams who reside at the Air Canada Centre.
On one side, you have Toronto Maple Leafs General Manager Brian Burke doing everything he can, not to mention saying everything he can, to make his team better. On the other side you have Bryan Colangelo doing everything as well, albeit more quietly, pulling out all the stops in trying to re-tool his team into a bona fide playoff squad.
For the first time in years, fans of both teams are smiling over what their teams have accomplished after a week of free agency.
For one week at least, the ‘Big Smoke’ has been the destination of choice among some of the elite in the NBA and NHL.
For one week at least, fans of both teams should be happy that Toronto is once again attractive.
It’s been a sight not seen nearly enough for these eyes.
Last edited by Dark Knight; 07-08-2009 at 05:14 PM.