Toronto Raptors: NBA Draft Team Needs

June 17th, 2008


2007-08 Record: 41-41; 2nd Atlantic

Draft Picks: 17

Key Free Agents

G Jose Calderon (restricted)

F Carlos Delfino (restricted)


How they got here and what they need

A year after winning their first-ever division title, the Raptors ran into the buzz saw better known as the "Big Three", with Boston snatching the title back to the tune of a 25-game margin. A first round exit at the hands of Orlando wasn't the best way to cap the season, but it is understandable given the serious injury suffered by point guard T.J. Ford coupled with Andrea Bargnani's sub-par second season. But they've got an All-Star in Chris Bosh, who stands to make more appearances in the annual exhibition as his career progresses.

But Bosh will need some help, as the Raptors had an extremely tough time dealing with Dwight Howard in the playoffs. As long as Calderon is back at the point, Ford could possibly be bait in trying to catch a small forward, but the need of utmost importance is someone who can defend and provide some needed toughness inside.

Who they take

I know most mock drafts have had this guy in the early twenties, but I think this would be a good fit for Stanford's Robin Lopez. Pairing him with Bosh would allow him time in further developing his offensive game, and he's already a solid defender and rebounder.

Draft History (since 2000)

2007: No Picks

2006: Andrea Bargnani (1), PJ Tucker (35)

2005: Charlie Villanueva (7), Joey Graham (16), Roko Ukic (41), Uros Slokar (58)

2004: Rafael Araujo (8), Albert Miralles (40)

2003: Chris Bosh (4)

2002: Kareem Rush (20)

2001: Michael Bradley (17)

2000: Morris Peterson (21), DeeAndre Hulett (46)