Wednesday, July 22, 2009

...Now what?

As I wrote yesterday, Jarrett Jack is officially a Toronto Raptor--but now what? The Raptors have approximately $5-7M left to spend on free agents. A back-up big man and some extra wings are still key issues for the Raptors. Who can we bring in to fix these needs?

Bryan Colangelo has hinted that Carlos Delfino will be a Raptor next year. Delfino would be excellent to have back, considering how well he played for the team in the 2007-2008 season. However, according to sources, Delfino is seeking $5M a year--is he really worth THAT much? And hasn't Colangelo somewhat addressed that issue? Currently, the Raptors wingmen are DeMar DeRozan, Antoine Wright, Devean George, and Jarrett Jack. I'd love Delfino back in a Raptors uniform, but just because we have his Bird Rights, doesn't mean we need to overspend on him. He's not worth too much money if we have others to fill his void.

Another issue for the Raptors is backups at the big man positions. As of right now, the Raptors have Bargnani and Bosh starting, with Reggie Evans, Jake Voskuhl, and Patrick O'Bryant backing them up (assuming Pops doesn't return, which I don't think he will). That is not going to get it done on a nightly basis. Bryan Colangelo needs to bring in a proven, reliable backup to add more depth to the bench. Solid free agents are still available, for example Rasho Nesterovic and Drew Gooden. Should the Raps pursue one of them? According to Toronto Star's Doug Smith, the Raptors may pursue Nuggets' Johan Petro if the deal for Rasho doesn't work. With that information, I assume Rasho is the front runner. In his last contract, Nesterovic made $8M per season. Considering he's now 33, Rasho will have to take a significant paycut.

I would love Rasho Nesterovic back in Toronto. I think he'd give the Raptors much needed help, and add more talent to an increasingly better bench. Considering the Raptors have so much extra money, it's hard to pinpoint which direction the team will take.

Hopefully, Colangelo will make the necessary moves to make the Raptors stronger contenders in the East.

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