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Old 10-20-2019, 09:45 AM   #1
Senator Clay Davis
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Default 2019-20 Raptors and General NBA Thread

Well here we are, a world in which the Raptors are the defending NBA Champions. Obviously it's gonna be tough to repeat after losing Kawhi, but this is still a very good team and if guys like Anunoby and Boucher can add something to the roster this can still be one of the top 3 teams in the East this year. Siakam needs to take another step forward for that, but given his development so far in his career that's not a huge ask at all. The Raps have become one of the very best organizations in the league at drafting and developing talent. Even without Kawhi I don't see a huge fall off, at least in the regular season

And with how many moveable contracts there are on this team, even if they do fall back to being maybe a fringe playoff team Masai will have the ability to accumulate assets for a quick rebuild. I would think after his masterstrokes last year he's earned the confidence to believe he will get things back to a championship level sooner than later. It sucks not having Kawhi back to take another run since the East is basically the same as last year, but obviously we'd all still do that trade again in 0.0001 seconds.

As for the league as a whole this is, I would hope, what the league office dreamed of having one day: A wide open league where 8-10 teams can win the title in a season, although the one thing that hasn't changed is the West is far more brutal to get through than the East. Should be a very fun season outside of watching guys like LeBron and Harden bow to totalitarianism in order to make even more money, as if they aren't rich enough.
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Old 10-20-2019, 11:57 AM   #2
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Just me but Siakim at $33m a year for 4y/25% of salary cap, at this point in the preseason, seems like a massive overpay for one decent regular season and better playoffs. I know he'd become a free agent next summer if thet didn't sign him in the next couple days, but it would be a restricted one and Raps could match any offer. Worth the risk to see how the player and the team, navigate this season.

I know money and salary structure in the NBA is wildly out of control, but I just don't see enough to say that this guy is to be a pillar/leader of the Raptors or any other NBA franchise just yet. Seems like a reach, and simply spending because they have the money to spend and hope that spending it keeps the good vibes of last year rolling by locking up one of the surprise players and hoping they he plays his way up into the value of the deal.
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Old 10-20-2019, 03:32 PM   #3
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I am not an NBA cap guru but from what I understand the Raptors will have a fair bit of cap space after this season with Gasol and Ibaka's contracts expiring. They will have to re-sign FVV who should be getting a nice raise. The 2020 free agent class from what I understand isn't incredible, but the 2021 free agent class is supposed to be similar to this previous offseason's, and the Raptors are set up very nicely to land some significant pieces with very little on the books.

Basically what I am saying is that I don't think Siakam's contract will be much of an obstacle for the Raptors in the near future; plus they have a really really good player, who only seems to be improving, locked down for the next five NBA seasons.

I will add it's very exciting times in the NBA. So much player movement in the offseason, the lack of a true super-team, so many incredible players; the NBA is the best professional sports league in NA at the moment in my opinion.

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Old 10-20-2019, 09:31 PM   #4
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I am not an NBA cap guru but from what I understand the Raptors will have a fair bit of cap space after this season with Gasol and Ibaka's contracts expiring. They will have to re-sign FVV who should be getting a nice raise. The 2020 free agent class from what I understand isn't incredible, but the 2021 free agent class is supposed to be similar to this previous offseason's, and the Raptors are set up very nicely to land some significant pieces with very little on the books.
Yeah, you're right, the Lowry extension signals that they're definitely eyeing that offseason, and of course Raptors' rumoured interest in Giannis would make a lot of sense. They could have Siakam, Anunoby and FVV under contract with about 55 million to spend. Realistically, they probably try to keep/develop some young guys, so maybe another $10 million on rotational depth, which this team seems to be great at finding/developing. That leaves maybe a $12,000,000 contract for Kyle if there's mutual interest there, and still enough for a max free agent like Giannis. They need a couple other young guys to succeed, but fortunately they own all their future first-rounders going forward, which is kinda rare for a team that just went all-in on a championship.
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Old 10-21-2019, 10:10 AM   #5
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I have less interest in this season compared to last for obvious reasons. Though in this case what I'm hoping happens is guys develop and play hard as a team. Basketball tends to be about the superstar, and while they don't have it this year it's such an important year going forward to find out who you keep and who gets dealt for the future. So in that way I hope a guy like Powell rebounds to what his potential once was. So from a hope perspective, I don't have much that they can win the championship, but I would like to see them go to the third round with this team. That would be an accomplishment.


As for aiming for the FA class next year, I don't think most teams plan for that. There are too many risks in banking on your strategy for any given player wanting to go to your team. The odds tend to be severely stacked against you unless you're in a traditionally large market. So I don't think Masai is banking on that route, though Giannis and Siakam would be very cool to have as your front court.
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Old 10-21-2019, 04:57 PM   #6
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It didn't take long for Siakam's contract to be a bargain. This is truly abysmal for the Celtics (and thus awesome for the rest of the division).

https://twitter.com/user/status/1186368729061441536
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Old 10-21-2019, 06:53 PM   #7
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What is Boston thinking?
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Old 10-22-2019, 09:18 PM   #8
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The refs are jobbing the Raptors bad tonight. Like really bad.
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Old 10-22-2019, 09:44 PM   #9
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What was Powell thinking there? Maybe I’m reading too much into the fist bump snub last year but the guy just cannot think or concentrate. He’s not the player to be taking that shot. TNT feed certainly pointed that bonehead shot out.
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Old 10-22-2019, 10:12 PM   #10
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Siakam looking every bit the part tonight.

FVV with another great performance.
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Old 10-22-2019, 10:49 PM   #11
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Entertaining game, was very impressed with Anunoby’s D, and my goodness is Van Vleet a clutch player.
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Old 10-22-2019, 11:33 PM   #12
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Watching Lakers/Clippers, Denny Green 6/6 from 3 after 3Q, including a clutch buzzer beater. Where the heck was that last spring?? Man he annoys me haha
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Old 10-22-2019, 11:56 PM   #13
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Watching Lakers/Clippers, Denny Green 6/6 from 3 after 3Q, including a clutch buzzer beater. Where the heck was that last spring?? Man he annoys me haha
He was awesome for the Raps during the regular season last year too. Won them a ton of games. He just went on a cold streak in the playoffs but he still hit big shots for the Raps.

I love the heart of this team. I never thought I'd say a basketball team had more heart than a hockey team. But with guys like FVV, Lowry, Siakam, Serge, and Gasol this team just has that feel. Excited to watch them this season.
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Old 10-23-2019, 03:22 AM   #14
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Also watching Silver give his talk...dude is a strigoli.
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Old 10-23-2019, 07:19 AM   #15
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Am I the only one who doesn’t know what a strigoli is? ��
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Old 10-23-2019, 12:21 PM   #16
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Fair enough about Green. I identify with the Raps but outside of the occasional reg season game I pretty much just watched the playoffs so that's all I really saw of him in his Raptors tenure on a regular basis, and I pretty much hated his guts ha-ha. He's basically James Neal to me now that he's scoring again. Good defensive player in the playoffs though.
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Old 10-23-2019, 02:55 PM   #17
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The other finals team in Golden State will be interesting to watch this year with no Klay, KD, or Iguodala.

Part of me hopes Curry just goes full Kobe and attempts like 25 shots a game.

Has to be the most single season turnover on the two finals teams in NBA history.
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Old 10-23-2019, 02:55 PM   #18
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Also a top up but I’m really intrigued to see what FVV can do this year.

He really became a different player in the finals and started to believe in himself in a way he likely never did before.

Confidence can be a funny thing, so will be neat to see if he takes that step this year.

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Old 10-23-2019, 03:20 PM   #19
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Having his kid really turned it all around for Van Vleet. Prior to that he was bordering on unplayable because he was such a black hole offensively in the Philly series and the start of the Milwaukee series. Since then he's looked like a borderline superstar. If nothing else he's highly motivated with a max contract out there for him to get.

Also, obviously, but yeah miss Kawhi already. Watching him do his thing last night was bittersweet. Far, far less bitter though that he's doing it for the Clippers and not the Lakers. It is one game but the Clippers depth and options for matchups are just ridiculous.
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Old 10-23-2019, 08:07 PM   #20
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My favorite thing in the league not related to the Raptors this year is the absolutely bonkers guard situation in the west. These are the pairings (with my approximate ranking):

Westbrook and Harden
Lillard and McCollum
Curry and Russell
Conley and Mitchell
Paul and Gilgeous-Alexander
J. Murray and Harris
Hield and Fox
D. Murray and DeRozan
Beverley and Shamet
Doncic and Wright
Ball and Holiday
Bradley and Green
Rubio and Booker
Teague and Okogie
Morant and Brooks

That's just an absurd wealth of guard talent. The top 4 all have 2 all-star calibre guards (except McCollum). The next 4 all have at least 1 all-star calibre guard and one really solid piece. The next 4 are sub all-star, but still really solid.
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