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    Raptors Republic Starter theycallmeZZ's Avatar
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    Mar 2012
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    Default Toronto Raptors season preview -

    Since you guys seem to take caution on what Brotherston says, I'm gonna quote everything NOT said by him.

    Every time the Toronto Raptors have spent four seasons in the lottery, they have returned to the post season and it looks like it could happen again. While Raptors president and general manager Bryan Colangelo’s last four lottery draft picks have generated a fair amount of buzz and controversy, it’s the acquisition of two starters from teams that finished ahead of them over the past couple of years that give them hope for next season.

    HOOPSWORLD takes a look at the 2012-2013 Toronto Raptors:

    Five Guys Think…
    There’s a lot of hope and optimism surrounding the Toronto Raptors right now. It’s not baseless as they’ve had a productive offseason. They didn’t lose much. What they did lose, they made upgrades in their place with Jonas Valanciunas, Kyle Lowry, Landry Fields, John Lucas, Terrence Ross, and Quincy Acy coming aboard. With them the team is much better assembled to play head coach Dwane Casey’s style of basketball. Although their 23-43 record last year didn’t show it, they made some key improvements under Casey’s guidance. If they can build on those while the new players get quickly acclimated, a run at a lower seed in the playoffs is quite possible. However, they play in the deepest division in basketball. Every team in it is better than they are, but that doesn’t mean they still can’t be in the top eight in the East.

    5th Place – Atlantic Division

    – Yannis Koutroupis

    This is the season Toronto Raptors fans have been waiting for since 2007-08, the last time the team made the playoffs. Actually, this might be the year Raptors fans have been waiting for since their founding in 1995, as this year’s team could be the best ever assembled. This year Dwane Casey will have a full training camp, and in that camp he will have a full complement of healthy players, including the highly-anticipated Jonas Valanciunas, incoming point guard Kyle Lowry, and freshman swingman Terrence Ross. Competition for minutes will be fierce, and once this team takes the court they will be even fiercer. They play in the toughest division in the NBA, but if all goes well the Raptors will make their triumphant return to postseason play, regardless.

    5th Place – Atlantic Division

    – Bill Ingram

    The Toronto Raptors had a very busy offseason. After winning just 23 games last season, the Raptors added a number of key contributors such as Kyle Lowry, Jonas Valanciunas, Terrence Ross, Landry Fields and John Lucas III in an effort to make a playoff push. Toronto has the talent to compete for one of the final playoff spots in the Eastern Conference, but their success will depend on whether they can develop chemistry and get through the transition period that comes with adding so many significant pieces. The Raptors play in the arguably the toughest division in the league, but they’ll likely be in the playoff hunt for much of the season. The Raptors are very optimistic heading into this season and they’ve made it very clear that they want to be a playoff team. It’s possible and the team is certainly heading in the right direction.

    5th Place – Atlantic Division

    – Alex Kennedy

    The Atlantic Division looks like the toughest division in basketball next season, with five teams that have a legitimate shot at making the postseason. Toronto might be the least likely in the eyes of some, but I’m of the belief that Kyle Lowry will make a huge difference in that starting lineup, and the addition of Rookie of the Year candidate Jonas Valanciunas will also mark a turning point for this organization. Dwayne Casey is a really good coach, and unlike last year, he could actually have the players he needs to make a serious run at the postseason.

    4th Place – Atlantic Division

    – Joel Brigham

    There is a genuine reason for Raptors fans to be optimistic heading into the 2013 season. The team has stockpiled a plethora of young capable talent on its roster and as a result the team’s chemistry amongst its core can rival most teams in the league. The arrival of talented point guard Kyle Lowry and rookie big man Jonas Valanciunas gives the team even more talent on the depth chart at head coach Dwane Casey’s disposal. The team should remain relevant in the playoff mix for much of the season before falling just short, which should make anticipation for the 2014 campaign worth the wait for Raptors fans.

    4th Place – Atlantic Division

    – Lang Greene
    What Needs To Be Said On Opening Day….
    For too long, this franchise has been associated with uncommitted defensive play. Last season we made major strides in this area. I am counting some of our longer tenured guys, Andrea and Jose, to continue to set the tone for a commitment to defense in Toronto. Our returning players, along with Kyle and Landry, give us new pieces to continue our improvement. We don’t have three superstars to carry our offense, so we need to bring a blue collar attitude on the defensive end in order to see playoff basketball. This past season, we finished 12th defense. This year, our goal is the top eight. Let’s take the next step and bring playoff basketball back to Toronto.

    – Anthony Macri and Brett Koremenos
    Last edited by theycallmeZZ; Thu Sep 13th, 2012 at 02:39 PM.

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