Raptors Blowed Up Real Good

With Bosh walking, Bryan Colangelo waited exactly one nanosecond before stripping the roster down for parts and starting to rebuild.

Here's the current state of the roster, assuming the deals happen as rumored:

PG: Jarret Jack
SG: DeMar DeRozan
SF: Boris Diaw
PF: Amir Johnson
C: Andrea Bargnani

G: Leandro Barbosa, Marco Belinelli, Marcus Banks
F: Tyson Chandler, Sonny Weems, Linas Kleiza, Ed Davis, Joey Dorsey, Solomon Alabi

Weems could start over Diaw at small forward, depending on Diaw's mood and whether he's in the dog house that day or not, but I think a team starting Bargnani at center is going to want all the extra rebounding it can get.

That's not a roster that's going to make any noise in the playoffs, but it does have some advantages over the way it looked yesterday:

1) A lot more cap flexibility. The Raptors get out from under Turkoglu and Calderon's longer-term deals and get back Chandler (whose contract is up after this season) plus Diaw and Barbosa (whose contracts expire after next season), without losing anything in the way of on-court performance. In the event they are able to find another franchise player to build around, this will give them the ability to do so.

2) The additions of Chandler and Diaw give Ed Davis and Solomon Alabi time to develop, rather than having them pushed into key roles in the front court rotation right away. If DeRozan turns out to still need some work, Barbosa serves the same purpose in the back court.

3) It forces Bargnani to be The Man on offense. He's never going to turn into Disco Dirk 2.0 -- the will to fight for rebounds just isn't there -- but nobody else on that roster is capable of scoring in bunches beyond the odd times Diaw is motivated, and possibly DeRozan if he takes a big leap forward. Bargnani will get all the touches he wants, and there'll simply be no excuse for him not to hit for 20+ a game.

4) It gives Colangelo trade chips (Chandler's expiring contract, and what will be left of the Miami trade exception) to play with this year in the event something falls in his lap.

I also wouldn't rule out the Raptors squeaking into the playoffs next year (which would be bad news for the team long-term, as it would keep them out of the lottery, but that's neither her nor there.) Miami, Boston, Orlando, plus maybe Chicago and Atlanta, are the cream of the Eastern Conference crop, but beyond that the last three spots are wide open, as none of the also-rans did much to improve beyond Washington drafting Wall and Philly drafting Turner.

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