Sure, they traded Andrea Bargnani to the New York Knicks for Steve Novak, Marcus Camby, Quentin Richardson and a first-round draft pick. But everyone knew Bargnani was going to get shipped out sooner or later, and the haul the Raptors received for him is hardly the stuff dynasties are built on.
With that being said, the free-agency period is still young, and after the amount of surprises thus far, it wouldn’t be a shock to see the Raptors pull off another move or two.
Marcus Camby Wants a Buyout
According to Marc Berman of NYPost.com, Camby, who isn’t even officially a Raptor yet, has requested a buyout.
It doesn’t appear that it’ll get ugly, however.
“We have a great deal of respect for and faith in the new management of the Raptors, so something is likely to work out for all involved.’’
While this was partly due to his plethora of injuries, it’s also in large part due to his age (39 years old). Given that, he’s likely to want to join an immediate contender.
Which is too bad, because if nothing else, he could serve as a mentor for Raptors center Jonas Valanciunas.
Camby wouldn’t have to play much, unless the team was really in a pinch for his services. But he has always been a fantastic post-defender and shot-blocker, and his experience could only help the young Valanciunas.
While a buyout is a possibility, Raptors brass may opt to keep Camby in a mentorship role, while giving him a few minutes here and there.
It could be a very underrated addition for a Toronto team looking for big men.
Toronto Raptors sign Julyan Stone
Never heard of Julyan Stone?
You’re not alone.
While the Raptors are certainly lacking depth behind Lowry at the point guard spot, this move is likely for insurance in case (or rather, when) Lowry goes down with an injury.
General manager Masai Ujiri clearly is intrigued by Stone, and there’s definitely reasons to be: He’s a 6’6” point guard who can defend and rebound.
With that size and athleticism, Stone is worth a gamble—especially after the Raptors declined John Lucas III’s option for next season.
There’s no guarantee he works out, but depth is always a good thing to have, especially for a team looking towards the playoffs.
Trading Rudy Gay to the Detroit Pistons
Talk about a major reset.
If the Raptors were to accept this deal, they would essentially be giving up on Gay after just half of a season with him, as well as throwing in the towel for next season.
Fortunately, Stein also reported that the Raptors have offered “nothing but resistance” to the deal.
If the Raptors were to accept this proposal, it would allow them to take back two expiring contracts while clearing Gay’s massive deal, thus clearing cap space for 2014.
If this were to happen, the Raptors would have a lot of money to throw around at potential free agents come next summer.
While this deal has its merits, ultimately it would be a poor choice.
Not only would it ensure Raptors fans have to endure another losing season, it would also mean they will never get to see how good a Lowry-Gay-DeMar DeRozan trio could be together.
If Ujiri truly believes the Raptors are not able to contend for a playoff berth as they are currently constructed, he may in fact make this move.
However, what he needs to practice now is patience; keep the core together into next season and see how it unfolds.
If the Raptors experience a breakout year, perfect.
If they stumble out of the gates and Gay continues to struggle alongside DeRozan and Lowry, surely Ujiri can find a better deal than what the Pistons are offering.
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