The Toronto Raptors have been the bottom-feeders of the NBA for the majority of their 15—year existence. A large part of this issue can be attributed to the franchise's frequent loss of All-Star or superstar-caliber players.
Damon Stoudamire, the 1995-1996 NBA Rookie of the Year, was dealt to the Portland Trail Blazers. Marcus Camby, the second overall pick in the 1996 NBA Draft, was traded to the New York Knicks and proceeded to become one of the best shot-blockers in the NBA.
Of course, the Raptors unwillingness to match Orlando's offer to Tracy McGrady is still fresh in our minds, as well as Vince Carter's departure to the New Jersey Nets. And of course, most recently, Chris Bosh went the way of LeBron James and "took his talents to South Beach."
The underlying issue for the Raptors organization clearly is not an inability to acquire star talent, rather it is a failure to either: Surround that their stars with a supporting cast capable of challenging for the NBA championship OR keep those stars for long enough for them to actually become superstars (see Tracy McGrady).
This article is going to cover how the franchise can relinquish the stigma which has followed it for nearly its entire history. Toronto does have a solid group of players in place right now, and with the right moves over the next few years; could build a team capable of contending for and possibly winning the NBA Championship.