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MikeToronto 07-28-2008 05:35 PM

Roster and outlook
 
Gentlemen, I give you your 2008-09 Toronto Raptors:

PG - Calderon (Ukic, Solomon)
SG - Parker (Adams, Ukic, Solomon)
SF - Moon (Kapono, Graham)
PF - Bosh (Bargnani, Humphries)
C - O'Neal (Bargnani, Jawai)

The wings are suspect, the bigs are injury-prone, so if worst comes to worst, this team could easily miss the playoffs. On the other hand, if both Bosh and O'Neal play at least 70 games each, Calderon stays healthy, Bargnani shows improvement and at least 2 of Ukic/Jawai/Adams/Solomon work out to the extent Moon did last year, this could be 3rd-4th seed in the East.

Oh, yeah, I almost forgot - we'd also need tighter rotation and overall better coaching.

Speak out.

'trane 07-28-2008 05:43 PM

:dance:

or

:confused:

or

:willy_nilly:

????????????

i just don't know what to think. this could be a very thin lineup or it could be very skilled with several stars. too much is unproven.

is it october yet?

Dr. J. Naismith 07-28-2008 06:36 PM

I'm hoping and praying that we remain healthy, because like you alluded to Mike we're in deep doo-doo if we struggle with injuries again. If both O'Neal and Bosh go down with injuries and miss a substantial amount of time like they both have in recent seasons, we very much can find ourselves back in the lottery again. :(

bartron_44 07-28-2008 07:03 PM

My god, I love comments like that one doc. I think most teams are in pretty deep "doo-doo" if they lose their best 2 players for any amount of time. Granted we have a higher chance then some teams based on our players histories, but I don't think there are many teams that can widthstand the loss of both their top players. even if Boston with its big 3 lost 2 of their stars, they would still be in trouble IMO. There are only 2 real question marks for me:

1: Can Roko play well enough to be the backup PG right away.
2: Can Bargnani find a way to contribute consistently, and not just jack 3's all day long.

Injuries are a game of chance for any team in sports, but these 2 guys need to stup up for us to be an upper tier team in the East this year. But if we can make it into the playoffs with our starters all healthy....LOOK OUT, as we will ride our stars as far as they can take us. boston showed last year the rotation doesn't have to be that deep in order to win.

Joshz 07-28-2008 07:06 PM

The line-up is an improvement, more so than i expected this off season, injuries are a worry but at almost every position (the 2 is questionable) we've got some really nice matchups...i'm exited to see O'Neil Solomon and Ukic play, im exited to see if Bargs game will improve...i can't complain with anything really, im just exited to watch this team, cause at the very least there interesting

LX 07-28-2008 07:18 PM

This team should not be as bothered by injuries as last season's team, aside from having fewer guys to sit in suits to start with. If injuries do occur then there will be some more expectations from Bargnani again, but still not to the extent as they did to start last year.

And Bosh and O'Neal should be able to share enough of a load to keep themselves from overstretching the limits of their bodies - the kind of thing neither has really had the luxury of and which made them injury-prone to begin with.

ClingRap 07-28-2008 07:32 PM

I think we're prime to win 50 this year. Outside of injuries, I think the real issue with the success of the squad is if mitchell can get creative on the offensive side of things to play to O'Neal's, Bosh's, and Calderon's strengths.
I think Bargnani will benefit from not having play calls and getting his from playing off of the other guys.

jeffb 07-28-2008 10:01 PM

One question. Who starts, Kapono or Moon? My vote would be Kapono.

Apollo 07-28-2008 10:15 PM

I'm thinking Solomon made the team due to a strong push be Parker. They're former teammates at Macabi. Anyway, talk about a guy totally off the radar...By the way, all reports indicate that Ukic will be the second string PG.

Quote:

Originally Posted by 'trane (Post 46598)
:dance:

or

:confused:

or

:willy_nilly:

????????????

i just don't know what to think. this could be a very thin lineup or it could be very skilled with several stars. too much is unproven.

is it october yet?

The bench reminds me of two years ago. There were a whole bunch of players who no one knew what would become of. The funny thing with that was that the guy who people expected to bust out, Fred Jones, stunk big time and the guy that most media didn't give a chance, Jorge Garbojosa, was a key player on a division championship team. I think Adams is going to be the surprise guy this season.

Snooch 07-29-2008 07:26 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by jeffb (Post 46619)
One question. Who starts, Kapono or Moon? My vote would be Kapono.

Moon will start for the first 6 min to help the team establish itself defensively, and on offense everthing at the start of the game is going through Bosh and JO

MikeToronto 07-29-2008 09:52 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by jeffb (Post 46619)
One question. Who starts, Kapono or Moon? My vote would be Kapono.

I am torn there as well. If we had a coach who knew how to establish TEAM defence (read, teach players how to help instead of preaching "personal responsibility" :yawn:), I'd advocate Kapono as him, Parker and Calderon would stretch defences as far as possible away from the big guns down low.

Dr. J. Naismith 07-29-2008 09:55 AM

I expect there to be some flip-flopping at SF to start the season to see who fits which unit the best. I think Moon will start the season at SF, but at the same time Kapono will get an opportunity to start as well. It'll certainly be interesting. :)

King Shake 07-29-2008 10:02 AM

I want Moon to start, but Kapono will start. SMitch will think of it like this: "Ball will always go to Bosh or O'Neal. Than, Parker or Kapono. Calderon is the last option." I think though, Moon off the bench isn't a bad thing at all. He played well off the bench last year and I think he would work nicely with Ukic or Solomon.

This year Hump has to be huge for us. Him and Jawai are the only 2 bigs off the bench and are expected to bring a good defensive presence when they are on the floor. I think we'll be surprised by how much Hump and Jawai score. Both guys have nice touch and Jawai can command his space down low.

Dr. J. Naismith 07-29-2008 10:05 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by King Shake (Post 46691)
This year Hump has to be huge for us. Him and Jawai are the only 2 bigs off the bench and are expected to bring a good defensive presence when they are on the floor. I think we'll be surprised by how much Hump and Jawai score. Both guys have nice touch and Jawai can command his space down low.

I'm thinking the priority coming off the bench to relieve either Bosh or JO would be Bargnani before it would be Humps or Jawai. There's still no way Andrea plays SF this season and considering the work he's been doing with Jermaine and company in Vegas this summer, I expect bigger and better things from Andrea next season.

Superjudge 07-29-2008 10:09 AM

Have you knuckle heads ever watche dthe Raps practice or listened to Mitchell speak?

Toronto is far from the bottom in defense league wide.

They got burned in a few places, both have been sufficiently addressed.

You blame the coach like you kow how to coach. It's kinda funny.

As for the Kapono/Moon thing. Whatever, why be torn, they will work that out in pracice andin games, the guy that wants it will have it. Period. It is no different than you HS basketball team man, you still gotta show and earn it on Mitchells team.

King Shake 07-29-2008 10:10 AM

Oh man, I forget completely about Andrea, my bad lol. Yea, Andrea will be huge or he will have to be PF I believe. Jawai and Hump will be fighting for the center roll. I actually have very little faith in Andrea and I didn't like that we picked him at all, but my logic helps me understand that he's 20, a bit raw and playing with a coach who has no creativity on the offensive side. Mitchell is all pick and roll and feed it to Bosh or O'Neal and teams catch on to that. I hope he has some tricks or something to not make us so predictable.

Quote:

Have you knuckle heads ever watche dthe Raps practice or listened to Mitchell speak?

Toronto is far from the bottom in defense league wide.

They got burned in a few places, both have been sufficiently addressed.

You blame the coach like you kow how to coach. It's kinda funny.

As for the Kapono/Moon thing. Whatever, why be torn, they will work that out in pracice andin games, the guy that wants it will have it. Period. It is no different than you HS basketball team man, you still gotta show and earn it on Mitchells team.
Dude, Mitchell runs the game plan. The guy calls the shots. He sets up our offensive and defensive plays. He has no creativity what-so-ever and I think that hurts Bosh and Bargnani a lot.

Defensively, no one say we are horrible, just that we have weak spots. Calderon, Andrea, Adams, Kapono and Solomon (Who I've read is very erratic and takes to many chances on defense). Mitchell runs the type of defense he knows how to run. He tries to focus on team defense because he knows he has some weak defenders.

You know why everyone says the Spurs are such a great defensive team....Pop. Gregg Pop. is probably the most systematic coach in the NBA right now. The guy has a system in place that can make every player look like he deserves 7 million a year by the way it uses their best ability. Tony Parker is a weak defender, but on the Spurs he looks like defensive player of the year. So, the coach has a lot to do with it.

Dr. J. Naismith 07-29-2008 10:15 AM

Quite frankly I'm not expecting much from Jawai unless he improves his conditioning before the start of next season. Eric Smith was saying that Nathan was struggling with a groin injury during the Vegas Summer League, but at the same time mentioned that he was terrible shape coming into the week event. That kind of concerns me. :(

King Shake 07-29-2008 10:17 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dr. J. Naismith (Post 46703)
Quite frankly I'm not expecting much from Jawai unless he improves his conditioning before the start of next season. Eric Smith was saying that Nathan was struggling with a groin injury during the Vegas Summer League, but at the same time mentioned that he was terrible shape coming into the week event. That kind of concerns me. :(

Yea, I read that too. He just came off injury and everyone has a day when they get tired fast. I know he's working hard and he'll be a huge surprise. You can book that.

Snooch 07-29-2008 10:26 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Superjudge (Post 46698)

As for the Kapono/Moon thing. Whatever, why be torn, they will work that out in pracice andin games, the guy that wants it will have it. Period. It is no different than you HS basketball team man, you still gotta show and earn it on Mitchells team.


Kind of disagree here, Moon and Kapono have skill sets that are at the opposite spectrum of each other. Pairing Moon at the start of the game with AP and Jose means that (1) he is surrounded by shooters and smarter players and (2) he can really be free to use his abilityies on the defensive end to set a good tone(having both Bosh and JO behind him)

Having Kaps off the Bench insures a good scoring punch and once interior presence is established on the offensive end with Bosh and JO Kaps will receive many more open looks.

So I beleive that for these reasons the first 6 or 7 mins of the game/quarter will be Moon, but Kaps will close out all the quarters

Claudius 07-29-2008 10:26 AM

The bigs to me aren't the biggest questino mark. For me it's the PG position. We all know what Jose can do, however, he never has had that full time gig all to himself. Even when TJ was down, it was only for a stretch of games (albeit a significant one). We all know Jose plays with energy, but can he hold this up for 82 games + anything in the playoffs? Does he slow down like he did at the end of last season? I understand alot of that points back to the importance Ukic will have on this team next season, but if our number one guy plays to mediocrity and Ukic plays as a rookie (apprehensive, learning the game etc) then we'll be in more trouble than any of us think.

Jose's in a new role and as great as he was as a back up, starting full time playing 35+ min./night will take a toll on his body. How much, well, we'll see.


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