OT: Who Remembers the Pre-Championship Raptors?

Discussion in 'Toronto Maple Leafs' started by The Podium, Aug 10, 2020.

  1. KapG Registered User

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    MJ is retired...has been for many, many years.
     
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  2. Plat87 Registered User

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    Oh what could've been.
     
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  3. sparxx87 Don Quixote

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    Those people are idiots.

    Raptors never lacked heart at all. They lacked an answer for LeBron James. Nobody in the East could stop him and that’s why he went to the finals 8 straight years. It took one of the greatest teams in NBA history to beat him. And he beat the 73-9 Warriors that had the greatest regular season in NBA history.

    Losing to an all time great on an all time run isn’t the same as continuously stumbling on your own mediocrity.
     
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  4. djdev Registered User

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    just like to point out, the raptors are in a class of their own in regards to scouting and development. no team in the history of the NBA has won a chip with 0 lottery picks until we did it. if the leafs could find the level of talent the raps have very late in the draft and even undrafted players, we would be in a much better position lol. i mean the raptors practically changed the usage of the whole g league with how we developed coaches and young players there.
     
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  5. 93LEAFS Registered User

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    I don't think anyone ever questioned Kyle's desire to win. Issues were DeRozan was too ISO dependent, and we didn't have a great 3rd guy until the emergence of Siakam. Plus, Danny Green and Marc Gasol gave us two strong defensive players plus one who is a good spacer and another who is a great low-post passer to help ball movement.
     
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  6. 93LEAFS Registered User

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    Not knocking our scouting and development, but I wouldn't go that far. We acquired a lot of overachievers through trade, in two cases cases using former lottery picks to get them (Derozan, Poetl and Valanciunas) plus a lottery pick was traded to get Kyle. The only key guy in our starting line-up last year was Siakam who was home-grown. Lowry, Leonard, Green, and Valanciunas were all acquired by trading lottery picks. I will say, key depth from guys like FVV and OG (although out most of the playoffs) were great value. We are also seeing strong emergence of other this year like Boucher.
     
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  7. theaub 34-38-61-10-13-15

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    Using the wrong Toronto team as the narrative here IMO. Especially with the Kawhi factor.

    Late 80's/early 90's Blue Jays are a better example. A game away from World Series in '85 with a good young homegrown core, then proceeded to be seen as perennial chokers (blew a final week divisional lead in '87, got dominated by the A's in '89 and blew another final week divisional lead in '90).

    Similar to the Raptors, they made a dramatic shakeup to the core after that '90 season in both the McGriff/Fernandez for Carter/Alomar trade and letting George Bell leave, and also had most of that 'earlier' core gone by that point (Moseby, Barfield, Whitt, Clancy etc).

    The thing with the Jays is, even with that shakeup they then had another disastrous playoff appearance against Minnesota in '91, and it took aggressive FA signings of Morris/Winfield to push them over the top. Here's a very fun article about a team that would proceed to win the next two World Series. Some of the verbiage is very similar to what's being said about the Leafs now.

    BASEBALL; Blue Jays Replay Canadian Sunset

    But even in this case, significant changes to the original group of players did occur. Think it has to happen with the Leafs as well.
     
  8. Plat87 Registered User

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    FVV was a key cog in last years championship, he made some HUUGE shots especially against the Bucks and in the Finals, he was undrafted and he's only getting better (11 ppg to 18 ppg). Norm Powell who is also a MIP candidate this year was drafted in the second round has made a huge jump this year (8.6 ppg to 16 ppg). OG a late round pick was a steal and already elite defensively, if he can improve his offensive game then watch out, Terence Davis has shown some flashes and might make an all rookie team and he was undrafted. The Raptors have absolutely one of the best, if not THE best scouting and developmental teams in the NBA.
     
    Last edited: Aug 11, 2020
  9. leafs2727 Registered User

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    FVV was awful in the playoffs until game 4 against the Bucks. Raptors fans were questioning whether he should’ve seen the court at all during that time.

    To your point, yes he was a key player against the GSW and has played well this season.
     
  10. Plat87 Registered User

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    Yes Orlando and Phillys length really bothered him but he eventually showed up, the Raptors don't win game 5 in Milwaukee if Fred doesn't hit 7 threes.
     
  11. 93LEAFS Registered User

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    I agree. But, I think its misleading to point directly to the lack of lottery picks on the team. Given how 4/5ths of the starting line-up was acquired by trading lottery picks.
     
  12. djdev Registered User

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    FVV undrafted and developed by raps 905
    siakam late 1st developed by raps 905
    OG late 1st
    powell 2nd round and developed by raps 905
    terence davis undrafted
    lowry was a for a protected 1st, which in the nba isnt worth all that much lol
    boucher undrafted developed by raps 905
    matt thomas undrafted picked from europe
    nick nurse d league pickup

    the only current starters we paid alot for would be ibaka and gasol, ibaka i never really liked the trade, and gasol was the final touch on a team which was believed could go very deep..which it obviously did lol

    not bad for an nba team which has 15 roster spots.

    most of the nba has changed the way they use the d league, using the raps model of recent years to develop late picks and undrafted players.

    edit: terence davis is a top 10 rookie in a redraft of last year
     
    Last edited: Aug 11, 2020
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  13. 93LEAFS Registered User

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    You are misremembering the Lowry trade, it was traded with unique protections so it couldn't be too low. It had to be top 14 but we kept it if top 3. Pick ended up being Steven Adams.

    Look, we obviously are a top development franchise. But, you look at the last great Spurs team, they drafted Ginobili, Green, Leonard and Parker outside the lottery. That accounted for most of their starting line-up. I just think its misleading (and thought it was misleading to really hammer home the non-Lottery picks aspect). We traded a ton of lottery picks to get the key players from Terrence Ross, Poetl, Derozan, the pick we traded to Houston, and Valanciunas. I mean, its a cool thing to tout, but isn't really much more than a surface level comment.
     
  14. djdev Registered User

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    im honestly just speaking of the current regime and how the player development and the draft has been the biggest reason for our success. we were much like the leafs under babcock and colangelo.
    who the raptors chose in the lottery before masai arrived to me is somewhat immaterial to me when speaking about this current team.

    the only lottery pick of his own that he traded was poetl. and what he got for some of the dudes that were here when he arrived was amazing. the grievis vasquez and bargnani trades are prob 2 of the greatest traded in franchise history.

    also, not that is really matters, but danny green was drafted by the cavs. but yes he became who he was with the spurs.
    but fair about lowry for sure. i mean he wasnt even a masai guy so im not sure whey i included him in my list lol
     
  15. 93LEAFS Registered User

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    Look, I hold Masai in very high-regard. He did the unthinkable here. It's just I mean, we traded a successful 8th overall pick in the league for a top 5 player in the league which is key. He supplied great depth. But, a lot of these "non-lotto" guy were very established NBAers by the time they arrived. Leonard a top 5 player in the league and former Finals MVP, Marc Gasol an All-NBA guy, Ibaka all-defensive team, etc.
     
  16. djdev Registered User

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    thats fair, maybe i put too much emphasis on the whole "no lottery picks" angle, when in reality it was a combination of drafting and developing, trades and philosophy. but i think we dont win last year if we dont have those homegrown late picks and undrafted players, and this year while it still has to play out we certainly havent taken any steps back without kawhi and green.
     
  17. KuleminFan41 Registered User

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    Literally no one. I get it, they won a championship but its not as if they didnt go through a lot of what the Leafs and many other teams go through before winning a championship
     
  18. sparxx87 Don Quixote

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    True.

    I guess my use of the lottery reference was more speaking to their ability to identify players that weren’t stars but could effectively fill a role within their team. You bring up a good point, though. The players weren’t lottery picks, but they were acquired for pieces that were.
     
  19. 93LEAFS Registered User

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    Yeah, the depth and hitting on those pushed us over the edge and gave us assets. It's a lot of acquiring known commodities for the final push. The three biggest factors I would say in winning last year that weren't present, were the upgrade from Derozan to Kawhi, Siakam breaking out, and Nurse ball-movement coaching (and general coaching). Siakam is clear example of finding a late talent and developing him. FVV and Norm also played important parts at time. This team will be interesting in the playoffs as it has more of those guys, and we lack Kawhi. Benches get reduced in the playoffs. We basically ran an 8 man rotation the whole playoffs, which isn't uncommon for top teams.
     
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  20. 93LEAFS Registered User

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    A lot of other teams also go through the same things and fail continually too.
     
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  21. thewave Fire Dubas

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    They played hard for years. They were like so many teams in the west who ran into the Blackhawks, sort of the St Louis Blues of the NBA is what the Raptors were. They got a missing piece in Kawhi and won it all. Now they are a good gritty team without Kawhi and probably won't repeat but could go deep.
     
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  22. fahad203 Registered User

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    Vince was the reason why we went even that far. Vince took it to the Phillies and Iverson who was just insane at the time

    Vince went to head to head with the best at the time. Just because went to his graduation means nothing. Regardless of that he performed exceptionally well.
     
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  23. cbbb25 Registered User

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    If anything the Raptors were more like the Washington Capitals. Very good to excellent regular season but just couldnt make big noise in the playoffs. Ive also seen a few people here for some reason discounting the 1st round series wins the Raptors did to make the comparison to the leafs easier I guess?

    If we really wanted to compare the Leafs-Raptors (pre championship) it would be the late 90s to 2004 Leafs. Good regular season team and consistently making the 2nd round with one ECF appearance.
     
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  24. Plat87 Registered User

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    Oh the true Raptor fans remember, it's the bandwagon jumping fairweather "fans" that dont.
     
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  25. Plat87 Registered User

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    I think the whole no lottery pick angle was to show that the team was filled with underrated and under hyped underdogs that played with a chip on their shoulders, which is perfect for the only non-American team in the NBA which always seems to get disrespected by the US media.
     

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