COMMENTARY | Fans of the Toronto Raptors' were excited to see Andrea Bargnani dealt to the New York Knicks this week for a couple of cheap contracts and three draft picks. But, with the team still in salary cap purgatory, look for the Raptors to make a lot of moves this summer.
First off is deciding if the team will buy out Marcus Camby and Quentin Richardson. Both are veterans that won't want to be part of a rebuilding movement in Toronto and would like to latch on with a team contending for a championship next season.
"I have nothing but positive things to say about the city of Toronto and its great fans, having been drafted by the Raptors 17 years ago," Camby said in a statement to the media. "Given that my goal at this point in my career is to have a shot at a championship, however, I'll have to evaluate my options going forward. I've enjoyed a great career, and under the right circumstances I hope to continue making an impact in the league."
Camby is only owed $1 million for the 2014-15 season and a shade under $4 million for the upcoming season so the chances of Toronto buying him out for this season is high if he doesn't want to play here. It's just a shame Camby couldn't have kept his desires to himself because it hinders what Ujiri could have gotten via a trade. Regardless, buying him out will serve to lower his cap hit and will still help Toronto out.
Richardson and Camby aren't the only players who could see themselves playing elsewhere next season. Toronto still holds their amnesty provision and Amir Johnson and Linas Kleiza both qualify as potential candidates. Johnson is a lock to stick around because of his value to the team while Kleiza is a lock to be a victim of the amnesty provision.
Even with Richardson and Kleiza out of town, Toronto will still have a glut of small forwards in Rudy Gay, DeMar DeRozan, Terrence Ross and Landry Fields. Ross is a young player that should see minutes next season while DeRozan and Gay proved last season they struggle to have strong games together. Fields is pretty close to untouchable due to the balloon payment he will get in the 2014-15 season.
Cue the recent trade rumors involving DeRozan being shipped to the Los Angeles Clippers for Eric Bledsoe. Bledsoe is a popular target with Chris Paul re-signing with the Clippers, as Detroit, Dallas and Toronto are all in the mix for the young point guard. Even if Toronto doesn't win the Bledsoe sweepstakes, it's become clear the Ujiri doesn't have the same loyalty or ties to DeRozan that Bryan Colangelo had. With that thinking in mind it's possible that DeRozan could find himself traded if the right offer come along.
It has to be encouraging to Raptor fans that Ujiri will be aggressive in unloading some of the contracts that won't help Toronto moving forward.
- Sports & Recreation
- Toronto Raptors
- Marcus Camby
- Quentin Richardson
- Andrea Bargnani