After a busy offseason, Raptor Basketball is back at the Air Canada Centre tonight. With all the second-guessing and criticism following every personell decision this summer, it will be interesting to see how the team responds in 05/06. There is no question that veteran leadership is at a minimum this year, however, if the preseason is any indication, it looks like Rob Babcock made the right moves on draft day. First round selections, Charlie Villanueva and Joey Graham both came from winning collegiate programs in Connecticut and Oklahoma State, and their preseason composure has shown leadership beyond that of your average freshman.
Obviously the loss of forward Donyell Marshall to free-agency is bound to hurt, however it should give forward Eric Williams the playing time he needs to regain the form he had with New Jersey.
But arguably the biggest change this offseason was the departure of sourpuss Rafer Alston. The head of his class at the school of Vince Carter, Rafer continuously tormented his teammates and coaches, with countless acts of selfishness and sulking. Rafer was shipped to Yao Ming’s Houston Rockets in exchange for veteran swingman and former NBA champion Mike James.
All-in-all it should be an interesting season.
The Raptors will use tonight’s game to gear up for evil-doer Vince Carter‘s second return to the ACC this Friday night.
Oh.. and the Leafs are Terrible!