April 4th, 2013 at 3:13 PM
By Stef Anderson
In light of Toronto’s recent mathematical elimination from the postseason, it’s time to start thinking ahead. The Raptors unfortunately cannot improve via the 2013 draft and have limited financial flexibility going forward ($73, 001, 258 team total for next year), so signing a big fish like a Dwight Howard, Josh Smith, David West or Chris Paul is an unlikely possibility. That being said, there are still quality role and bench players available in the 2013 free agent class that could strengthen the Raptors for the right price.
Here a few of them.
Kyle Korver (SG, Atlanta Hawks)
Toronto’s glaring weakness is shooting the long ball. The Raptors rank 25th in 3-point field goal percentage (.341) and 10th overall in 3-point field goals attempted per game (20.9) – meaning they are highly inefficient from downtown. While Korver is weak defensively and athletically, he is a deadly shooter that can space the floor. The former Creighton Bluejay has been a top 10 leader in 3-point field goal percentage for consecutive years and would be an ideal offensive spark off the bench.
Tony Allen (SG, Memphis Grizzlies)Read more... Join the Conversation...
April 2nd, 2013 at 4:22 PM
By Sports Media 101
In the midst of another disappointing season, Stefan Anderson brings us up to date on which Raptors need to be given the pink slip.
John Lucas III
I was a bit excited when the Raptors closed in on a multi-year deal for the former Chicago Bull last summer. He was coming off an impressive season with averages of 7.5 points and 2.2 assists and proved to be a serviceable backup point guard for the injury prone Derrick Rose. He made big shots when he needed to and had an aura of confidence that the Raptors desperately needed.
But this year he’s been a different story. Lucas takes way too many shots, rarely passes the ball and has dipped in almost every offensive statistical category.
2011/12: PTS (7.5), AST (2.2), FT % (.875), 3P % (.393), FG % (.399)
2012/13: PTS (5.3), AST (1.6), FT % (.696), 3P % (.382), FG % (.390)
Love his story – a journeyman originally drafted by Charlotte in 2005 who had stints in Croatia, Spain, Russia, China and the NBA D-League before finally finding a home with Toronto.Read more... Join the Conversation...
March 28th, 2013 at 1:24 PM
By Stef Anderson
Al Horford had a massive 26 point, 12 rebound double-double, while Jeff Teague added one of his own with 24 points and 13 assists, as the Atlanta Hawks bounced the Toronto Raptors 107-88 Wednesday night at the Air Canada Centre.
Jonas Valanciunas scored 19, Rudy Gay had 15 and DeMar DeRozan chipped in 14 for Toronto (26-45) who have now lost four straight and 11 of 14.
With the victory, Atlanta clinched (40-32) a sixth consecutive playoff berth and only trail the fourth place Brooklyn Nets by 2.5 games.
Expectations were low for the Hawks when the franchise parted ways with swingman Joe Johnson and Marvin Williams last summer.
Leading scorer Johnson was traded to the Brooklyn Nets for a couple plug-ins (no offense Anthony Morrow, DeShawn Stevenson, Jordan Farmar, Jordan Williams and Johan Petro) and a 2013 first round draft pick.
Williams, considered to be a “bust” in most NBA circles, was traded to the Utah Jazz for point guard Devin Harris.
But the Hawks are again a perennial 4-6 Eastern Conference seed thanks to a selfless offense (2nd in assists per game with 24.6) and a tenacious defense (97.1) that forces turnovers.Read more... Join the Conversation...
March 26th, 2013 at 6:00 PM
By Mike Markovski
The Toronto Raptors (26-44) recalled 22 year-old rookie forward Quincy Acy from their D-League affiliate, the Bakersifeld Jam on Tuesday (March 26). He averaged 2.8 points and 1.8 rebounds in 7.8 minutes while he was with the Raptors. It'll be nice to see his Reggie-like beard on the bench, and hopefully Dwane Casey gives him some extended time in at least a couple games, considering the season is lost and a few monster jams never hurt anybody. He's nothing special, but he does bring energy and can grab rebounds, as well as finish near the rim. He's undersized for the 4 in the NBA, but his ball handling skills make it impossible for him to play on the wing, so it's tough to see him at the small forward position. In other news, Rudy Gay practiced hard on Tuesday, and it's not looking likely that the Raptors will shut him down as previously discussed. Hopefully he can miraculously improve his shooting efficiency to close out the season, so Raptors fans can feel better about his albatross of a contract.Read more... Join the Conversation...
March 24th, 2013 at 1:46 PM
By Stef Anderson
Carmelo Anthony scored 28 points and J.R. Smith added 25 as the New York Knicks cruised to a 110-84 victory over the Toronto Raptors on Saturday night.
Kenyon Martin had another dominant performance against Toronto (26-44), as he finished with 18 points to help New York (42-26) grab their fourth consecutive win.
Fellow rookies Jonas Valanciunas and Terrence Ross were the lone bright spots for the struggling Raptors, who now sit in 10th place in the Eastern Conference.
Valanciunas had a great all around game and recorded a near double-double, scoring 11 points on 4 for 4 shooting while grabbing eight rebounds. Terrence Ross finished with 13 points while draining 3 of 5 three point attempts, and was the only efficient long range shooter for the Raptors.
It was surprising that the Lithuanian received so few touches, given that you know…New York had no front court. The Knicks were still without Tyson Chandler (Bulging Disc), Amare Stoudemire (Knee) and Kurt Thomas (Foot fracture).Read more... Join the Conversation...