Does Bill Simmons’ Trade Idea of Rudy Gay to the Milwaukee Bucks Make Sense? BY ANDY BAILEY (FEATURED COLUMNIST) ON OCTOBER 18, 2013 7,139 reads 15 SHARE TWEET Use your ← → (arrow) keys to browse more storiesNext Ron Turenne/Getty Images Bill Simmons gave us a two-for-one on trade ideas during the latest episode of he and Jalen Rose’s 2013 NBA Preview. While discussing the Bucks, Simmons threw out the possibility of swapping the expiring contracts of Milwaukee’s Caron Butler and Ekpe Udoh for Rudy Gay of the Toronto Raptors. Here’s the proposal from Simmons: As you saw, he threw out the possibility of working basically the same deal with Chicago’s Luol Deng instead of Gay. I’ve already explained why I think that one’s no good. For the purposes of this discussion, let’s focus on the potential swap with the Raptors. The deal as constructed by Simmons works in ESPN’s NBA Trade Machine, and makes sense to me for a couple reasons—but only if the Raptors are out of the hunt and looking to tank by the time the trade deadline rolls around. If that’s the case, new general manager Masai Ujiri may want to unload the team’s most burdensome contract and start looking toward the future. Why it Works for Toronto Chris Humphreys-USA TODAY Sports Toronto pulling the trigger on this would essentially be about finances, and little else. Butler and Udoh will make $12.5 million this year and be free agents this summer. Gay is set to make $37.2 million over the next two seasons if he exercises the player option on the second year of the deal.
Then, more or less, he screeched. Three times. Officially, he was saying “Woooo,” but it came out distinctly high-pitched, all three times. It prefaced a 25-minute span during which Ujiri was no longer president and general manager of the Raptors. Instead, he was a motivational speaker.
“We’ve made it clear to all of our players, we’re going to win championships here,” Leiweke said to the season ticket holders on hand for an ACC schmooze-fest Friday. “I believe in Masai. My trust, my faith is in this man. He’s going to lead us to the next level, and he will lead us to a championship here in Toronto.” Just not overnight.
"This crowd, everybody talks about it around the league," Ujiri told TSN.ca following the event. "How do we get their support even more? That’s what we’re trying to encourage." "When there are hard times I’m going to interact with them, when there are good times I’m going to interact with them. For me that’s the nature of the business and there are going to be hard times, we have to be patient here but we have to be spirited, I think, as an organization."
I’m going to take the road that the Raptors find a way to turn him into value in the form of young players and draft picks. If they do get rid of him, they’ll find any wins hard to come by down the stretch. All in all, I see them with a final record of 28-54.
The Toronto Raptors held an exclusive town-hall type event for season ticket holders. Notable players and executives were in attendance to answer choice questions from fans, and to give a miniature state-of-the-union regarding the goals and direction of the franchise. Today’s post will cover the highlights, including a riled-up Masai Ujiri, the direction of the franchise, and Jonas Valanciunas’ Halloween costume.
Offseason acquisitions Tyler Hanbrough and Steve Novak will join forces with Landry Fields and Terrence Ross to become the core of the second string for the Raptors. Apart from that, however, there really isn’t a whole lot more coming off the bench. Ross proved last year that he is a streaky scorer at best, while Fields demonstrated he can be a lock down defender on the big occasion (Carmelo Anthony twice). Hansbrough can be effective when he is not drawing technical fouls and annoying referees, and we all know how clutch Novak can be from behind the arc, but he will require the distribution.
“[Playing in Europe] had always been something that was talked about,” Buycks said Tuesday.
As for Raptors fans clamouring for the tank to roll through Toronto: forget it. It may be the consolation prize in February if the team is doing poorly. But Raptors general manager Masai Ujiri is on the record saying, “we’re not going to give players away and I’m not sure how you teach winning by losing.” The Raptors will play to win. And why not? Toronto is eyeing its longest playoff drought—at five seasons and counting. Playing for ping pong balls means a sixth-straight campaign without the post-season, and then you’re likely looking at another couple of seasons before the next chance at the playoffs. This isn’t Boston or Philadelphia, both of the Celtics and Sixers have played on Mother’s Day in recent seasons.
Along with arguing with the officials, there were times Lowry could be seen pouting on the bench after losing playing time to Jose Calderon. When Lowry was forced to miss time due to injury, Calderon was inserted into the starting line-up and thrived in the role. The Spanish guard put up career numbers and the team was winning games, but when Lowry was healthy again and was told he’d be coming off the bench, he didn’t appreciate the loss of playing time despite the team’s success. Suddenly, the attitude issues fans in Toronto had heard about from Lowry’s time with the Memphis Grizzlies and Houston Rockets were becoming visible, and many began to wonder if he was a selfish player.