Monday, October 26, 2009

Top 5 Things To Watch For In 2009-2010: #2

#2: The Bench

The 6th man. The under-appreciated guys. The guys who may not be as good as the starters, but can still fill a roll nicely. The bench.

One of the big reasons why the Raptors underachieved in 2008-2009 was largely due to a thin bench. Jason Kapono and Joey Graham couldn't do it all.

Bryan Colangelo realized this; so what'd he do? He signed Jarrett Jack and Rasho Nesterovic, and traded for guys like Marco Belinelli, Antoine Wright and Amir Johnson. Talk about a revolution.

Although I'm happy with the new and improved bench, I have my doubts. It sounds like a ton of offense but not a lick of defense. Rasho, while he brings athleticism to the backup big man position, has a limited defensive game. It's overrated. Marco Belinelli didn't play much in Golden State, something that was thought to be a questionable decesion by head coach Don Nelson. Will Belinelli prove him wrong?

But at the end of the day, the bench will arguably shape the success of the Raptors this upcoming year. A solid starting rotation, coupled with a good bench, and the Raptors off-season moves could actually be a success.

Kudos, Bryan Colangelo.

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