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The_Snowbear

THE NORTH HAS SPOKEN

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Toronto was planning a Leafs cup parade a few months ago.

 

And now they get a different championship parade.  Congrats to the Raptors.  They got lucky with KD being out for basically the whole series and Thompson's injury in Game 6.  In game 6, some big shots made by VanVleet and Lowry.  And a legendary playoff performance by Leonard.

 

What a gutsy trade to get Leonard in the first place.  I wonder if there's a trade like that out there for the Flames to make.  Somehow, we move a Gaudreau or Giordano but get back a guy who is the Centerpiece of a Cup win.

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4 hours ago, The_People1 said:

 

What a gutsy trade to get Leonard in the first place.  I wonder if there's a trade like that out there for the Flames to make.  Somehow, we move a Gaudreau or Giordano but get back a guy who is the Centerpiece of a Cup win.

There could be, but its a little hard to say right now but also a difference in the 2 leagues.  NHL this year had all four division winners bounced in the first round which isn't common but there is usually at least one each year.  NBA basically had the top 4 in each conference advance to round 2 and the lowest seed in the conference finals was a 3 seed, and that isn't uncommon for that league.  Comparison could be ROR, but the comparisons last summer were a former finals MVP (won that by shutting down Lebron) from a winning culture vs. a guy who had been on teams picking top 5 for most of his career who hadn't won a playoff round before.  In hockey most SC winners you can usually make a case for 3 or 4 guys to win Conne Smythe, the Raptors/Warriors series there was no-one else that you could, they got great contributions from others as every game somebody else stepped up.  This was just the gamble in sports that played out perfectly, the depth of the team and emergence of Siakam allowed them to give Leonard 22 games off during the regular season, Lebron left the conference and come playoff time Leonard was relatively healthy and was able to deliver the clutch performances that Derozan and Lowry failed to do in the past, add in the job Nick Nurse did it was an exciting ride and will be interesting to see what comes up this summer.  

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In basketball I feel like team game goes as far as 8 guys, then the next one or two kind of buy time for someone. Hockey needs 9+ Forwards and at least 4 D going all at once, and probably five to win a round or two. Really from what I saw Is it takes a total team effort to win the cup. All cylinders. 

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On 6/14/2019 at 11:07 PM, robrob74 said:

In basketball I feel like team game goes as far as 8 guys, then the next one or two kind of buy time for someone. 

 

Honestly, more like 3 guys usually. The Raptors were lucky to win it with just 2, Leonard and Lowry.  That second tier of Gasol, Siakim, Vanvleet, Green, and Ibaka played above expectations and got the job done. The rest, ya, just bench warmers and go buy time for the starting group to get rest.  Some of these great teams that won it in past years had a big 3 and then a bunch of second tier guys that extended the roster to 8, or 9 deep.  

 

But basketball is a game of superstars at the end of the day.  Seems even if Kawhi Leonard stays in Toronto, the Raptors need to add one more star player to have a chance to repeat.  If the Warriors blow it up and rebuild, then that's the end of one super team.  Their talent spreads around the rest of the league.  You've got a wide open race that hasn't happened in the NBA in a very long time.  The league doesn't have a Lebron James in his prime that is guaranteed to make the Finals every year.  Lebron is getting old.  There isn't a "next one" yet.  

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so with Kawhi leaving the Raptors, i feel like i just started getting into basketball and now basketball is over.  No need to follow it anymore.

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3 hours ago, The_People1 said:

so with Kawhi leaving the Raptors, i feel like i just started getting into basketball and now basketball is over.  No need to follow it anymore.

Yeah I hear that, I've always been a general sports follower, but the fact this century had basically gone from one powerhouse to another makes the sport less interesting than others and I've definitely turned away from watching it until this year.  That said certain teams like the Spurs and Warriors you can respect for how they built their dynasties mainly from their own drafting and great coaching, which the coaching part could help the Raptors get back sooner than later.  

 

This year I kinda jumped on the Raptors wagon from the moment the trade was made, just completely gutsy trading a guy who had been a loyal to a team that had lacked loyal stars for a guy with one year left coming off a major injury that wanted to go home.  Everything just worked out perfectly given how the rest unfolded, just imagine he misses that shot against Philly and they lose in OT.  Ujiri would likely be gone, Kawhi would've given no thought of even returning.  I still believe the team won't fall off a cliff, they went 17-5 without Leonard in the regular season and still have a solid team with Siakam, Lowry, Ibaka, Gasol and FVV that should still keep em in the top 4 or 5 in the weak east, but could be tough getting back until they land another star or 2.

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There were times you would get excited and convince yourself otherwise, but the truth was Kawhi was always going to be one and done. He told the Spurs to trade him to LA when he first demanded a trade and only got to the Raps because they were willing to give up more and he had no say. They got what they needed out of the trade for sure and while it sucks, was always the most likely ending. 

 

to each their own, and I've been a Raptor fan since basically day 1 so i'm bias but I still thikn this team is going to be fun to watch and worth following. Lowry is one of the best point guards in the league, Siakam is a rising star who i think is going to be an All-Star either this year or next. Leonard leaving is going to open up the floor for them to get Siakam the ball more. Freddie probably gets more minutes and Ibaka/Gasol are solid up front. The biggest wildcard is OG Anunoby. He has had some injury problems so far in his young career, but this was a guy who looked liked another potential star in his rookie season and one who has drawn Kawhi comparisons in both College and the pros for his ability at both ends of the court. 

 

So they have young talent, a terrific executive in Ujiri, and their cap situation is in great shape following the season. Plus they have the option of moving guys like Ibaka/Gasol/Lowry for picks/futures at the deadline. They'll be able to be players in both FA and the trade market because of the assets they've been able to stock. it's no Kawhi but future is still looking good IMO especially in a fairly wide open East. 

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15 hours ago, sak22 said:

Yeah I hear that, I've always been a general sports follower, but the fact this century had basically gone from one powerhouse to another makes the sport less interesting than others and I've definitely turned away from watching it until this year.  That said certain teams like the Spurs and Warriors you can respect for how they built their dynasties mainly from their own drafting and great coaching, which the coaching part could help the Raptors get back sooner than later.  

 

This year I kinda jumped on the Raptors wagon from the moment the trade was made, just completely gutsy trading a guy who had been a loyal to a team that had lacked loyal stars for a guy with one year left coming off a major injury that wanted to go home.  Everything just worked out perfectly given how the rest unfolded, just imagine he misses that shot against Philly and they lose in OT.  Ujiri would likely be gone, Kawhi would've given no thought of even returning.  I still believe the team won't fall off a cliff, they went 17-5 without Leonard in the regular season and still have a solid team with Siakam, Lowry, Ibaka, Gasol and FVV that should still keep em in the top 4 or 5 in the weak east, but could be tough getting back until they land another star or 2.

 

I watched "some" NBA during the Jordan years and followed it somewhat during the Shaq/Kobe days.  I followed the Raptors a bit during the Carter/McGrady days but since then, not really.  I pretty much didn't watch any of Lebron in his prime and didn't really care for the NBA the last 10 years.  Back then, i didn't really cheer for any specific team but was just a fan of Jordan and then a fan of Shaq. 

 

From the standpoint of a casual fan though, i do think dynasties and power houses make it easier to follow the league.  If there's too much parity and too much player movement every off-season, then it takes a more dedicated fan to follow all the transactions and stay up to date on which teams are in contention.

 

Anyways, the Kawhi trade made NBA exciting again because it made the Raptors a legit contender.  At the end of the day, the NBA is still a star driven league and if your team doesn't have a top 5 player in the league, then you have no chance.  As casual fan of the Raptors, I just cannot get too invested in the league if the team you cheer for has no chance to win because they don't have a top 5 superstar, which is where the Raptors find themselves again.

 

50 minutes ago, cross16 said:

There were times you would get excited and convince yourself otherwise, but the truth was Kawhi was always going to be one and done. He told the Spurs to trade him to LA when he first demanded a trade and only got to the Raps because they were willing to give up more and he had no say. They got what they needed out of the trade for sure and while it sucks, was always the most likely ending. 

 

to each their own, and I've been a Raptor fan since basically day 1 so i'm bias but I still thikn this team is going to be fun to watch and worth following. Lowry is one of the best point guards in the league, Siakam is a rising star who i think is going to be an All-Star either this year or next. Leonard leaving is going to open up the floor for them to get Siakam the ball more. Freddie probably gets more minutes and Ibaka/Gasol are solid up front. The biggest wildcard is OG Anunoby. He has had some injury problems so far in his young career, but this was a guy who looked liked another potential star in his rookie season and one who has drawn Kawhi comparisons in both College and the pros for his ability at both ends of the court. 

 

So they have young talent, a terrific executive in Ujiri, and their cap situation is in great shape following the season. Plus they have the option of moving guys like Ibaka/Gasol/Lowry for picks/futures at the deadline. They'll be able to be players in both FA and the trade market because of the assets they've been able to stock. it's no Kawhi but future is still looking good IMO especially in a fairly wide open East. 

 

I think a lot of bandwagoners such as myself will watch the start of next season but if the Raptors look average coming out of the gate, then they will jump off and lose interest.  That's also a very likely scenario.  The Raptors' Centers are old and need load management.  I'm guessing that's where they will struggle the most.  It's hard to see them have a legit shot at repeating, i mean, that was even if Kawhi returned.  But now, they have even less of a chance to repeat.

 

Rebuilds are actually pretty exciting for the hardcore fan no different than when the Flames went into a rebuild 5 years ago.  The casual fan just can't be too excited though.

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2 minutes ago, The_People1 said:

I think a lot of bandwagoners such as myself will watch the start of next season but if the Raptors look average coming out of the gate, then they will jump off and lose interest.  That's also a very likely scenario.  The Raptors' Centers are old and need load management.  I'm guessing that's where they will struggle the most.  It's hard to see them have a legit shot at repeating, i mean, that was even if Kawhi returned.  But now, they have even less of a chance to repeat.

 

Rebuilds are actually pretty exciting for the hardcore fan no different than when the Flames went into a rebuild 5 years ago.  The casual fan just can't be too excited though.

 

I don't disagree with much of this but will add that I think people forget the Raps had a pretty large following before the trade and run too. Sure it grew substantially due to Kawhi and the run but they've been drawing very well as a club for the last 5-6 years too so I don't think the bottom is suddenly going to fall out on that. But your right, their chances at a championship are super slim. I still think they make the playoffs in the east though as I don't see how they are not one of the best 8 teams even without Kawhi, but I can't see them getting past the Sixers or Bucks in a series, let alone trying to have to beat whoever makes it out of the west. 

 

i think it's more of a retool than a rebuild but that's splitting hairs. You are not wrong though there is no superstar here and as much as I like Siakam/OG it's a ways to go to put them in the category you need to be in to have a true contender. Best bet at that is the free agent class in 2 seasons. 

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