The Masai Ujiri era with the Toronto Raptors has been a success.
He’s been aggressive when needed and has made the moves to turn them into a perennial playoff team in the Eastern Conference.
That includes making tough decisions, such as moving fan-favorite DeMar DeRozan to land Kawhi Leonard on a one-year rental, but it paid off with an NBA championship.
Notably, the Raptors managed to stay competitive while also building for the future.
But they might not be good enough to compete as things stand right now, so maybe, they’d be better off turning their attention to the upcoming NBA Draft.
That’s why The Ringer’s Kevin O’Connor believes they should just blow it up, make some trades, and retool thinking of the future:
The Raptors are in Blow It Up territory
-13-17 record, losers of 5 straight
-The team looks broken
-No realistic path to contention
-Only 3.5 back from the bottom 4
-Veterans they could get a haul for
-Young talent to build with, making it more of a retool and not a long rebuild pic.twitter.com/QEmfLKHZjz
— Kevin O'Connor (@KevinOConnorNBA) December 19, 2022
Nonetheless, Raptors insider Eric Koreen doesn’t see that happening unless they find a trade suitor for Pascal Siakam as well:
“If they trade Pascal Siakam, they will be blowing it up. Anything shy of that falls shy of that definition, too,” Koreen wrote. “Trading Fred VanVleet, a first-time All-Star last year who is shooting poorly this season and will likely hit free agency at age 29 in the summer? Not blowing it up.”Trading O.G. Anunoby, a tremendous defensive player with solid utility as a tertiary scorer, to add some draft picks and/or increased depth? Not blowing it up.”
The Raptors sure have some promising pieces on their roster, led by reigning Rookie of the Year Scottie Barnes.
So, maybe taking a step back is just what they need to take a major leap forward.