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Unread 08-04-2018, 10:13 AM
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Granite Armadillo Granite Armadillo is offline
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Default Toronto Raptors: The Canadian Invasion (1995 - Onward)

Background
Northern expansion. This was the idea when NBA Commissioner David Stern announced the formation of the Vancouver Grizzlies and Toronto Raptors in November 1993. The succeeding months were nothing short of a whirlwind, as ownership scrambled to develop a staff, pick a mascot, and develop the team’s colors and logos. In fact, it wasn’t until May 24, 1994 that Isiah Thomas—the legendary point guard from the Detroit Pistons who officially retired from the Association at the end of the 1994 season—was announced as the squad's first-ever general manager and a minority owner (9 percent) of the franchise. He only had a few weeks before the NBA Draft Lottery, the NBA Expansion Draft, and the NBA Rookie Draft itself, but Thomas was clear he had a vision for what he called "Canada's flagship basketball club."

This vision was plainly stated at Thomas's introductory press conference. Although he didn't have a coaching staff in place, Thomas was adamant that this Raptors squad was going to focus on solid defense and ball movement. Even if the team struggles early on, Thomas reasoned, he didn't want them to get embarrassed. Nobody in the press room kid themselves into thinking Toronto could build a contender in a few months. In fact, Thomas worked to lower expectations—there were going to be some leans years in order to build this club organically. The Raptors weren't going to compete in the Eastern Conference FInals with the 1994 NBA Champion Orlando Magic any time soon. Thomas wanted to do this right, he said, to transform Toronto into the most-respected franchise in the Association.

With only a few weeks before the NBA Draft, Thomas's attention was there. High-schooler Kevin Garnett, former Arizona point guard Damon Stoudamire, and the UNC tandem of Jerry Stackhouse and Rasheed Wallace were all prospects Thomas made clear were the focus of his attention. And, of course, there was the NBA Expansion Draft ahead soon; Toronto was already reviewing the back end of NBA benches to see who it would like to join its ranks.

The club had a long-term focus, one which fans knew would lead to some losing early on. But at that press conference, a sense of optimism led the day as Toronto reflected on what it meant to be a basketball city.

Author Notes
Welcome to the introduction of my Toronto Raptors FBPB diary. This is my third diary for this game, as previously did a Minnesota Timberwolves diary and a Charlotte Bobcats diary. As usual, I’d like to thank previous dynasty writers who have inspired the format of this diary: michgc’s “Sacramento Kings: One Goal” and trypio’s “Minnesota Timberwolves: Rewriting history.” If you have read these dynasty’s yet, do yourself a favor.

This dynasty takes the Toronto Raptors and starts from scratch. They have no roster and no coaching staff. We are “months” away from their inaugural season. In-game, I started in 1994 and simulated the first year: hence the reference to the 1994 NBA Champion Orlando Magic. I pace my posts considerably—one or two a week—to avoid burnout.

I hope you enjoy.
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Unread 08-04-2018, 10:14 AM
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Granite Armadillo Granite Armadillo is offline
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The Toronto Raptors...

Centers



Power Forwards



Small Forwards



Shooting Guards




Point Guards




Last edited by Granite Armadillo : 08-25-2018 at 08:10 PM.
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Unread 08-04-2018, 10:15 AM
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Granite Armadillo Granite Armadillo is offline
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[Save for Season Recap]
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Unread 08-04-2018, 06:19 PM
tg01 tg01 is offline
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If you go to the last post of your Minnesota Timberwolves diary then you will have a good idea of how excited I am to see you back! Add in the fact that I am a Raptors loving Canadian and I could not possibly be more excited about this! Hope you manage to get some longterm play for this.......and just as a reminder....Gary Payton was still pretty good at this time

PS: I hope this is not a question that will rub salt in old wounds...but just curious how the bar exams ended up going? All the best!
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Unread 08-04-2018, 09:14 PM
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Granite Armadillo Granite Armadillo is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tg01 View Post
If you go to the last post of your Minnesota Timberwolves diary then you will have a good idea of how excited I am to see you back! Add in the fact that I am a Raptors loving Canadian and I could not possibly be more excited about this! Hope you manage to get some longterm play for this.......and just as a reminder....Gary Payton was still pretty good at this time
Thanks for the enthusiasm! I thought about continuing where I left off, but I lost most of my screenshots. Now with school over and some time with my job under my belt, I am optimistic that I will have the time/attention to spend on this.

Quote:
PS: I hope this is not a question that will rub salt in old wounds...but just curious how the bar exams ended up going? All the best!
I did! I actually passed two bar exams: Iowa in July '17, and Illinois in February '18. It's been a crazy year.
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Unread 08-04-2018, 09:23 PM
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1995 NBA Draft Lottery

We go into the 1995 NBA Draft Lottery with the second best odds. While the prize of this draft class is Kevin Garnett, we are optimistic about Damon Stoudamire, Rasheed Wallace, or Jerry Stackhouse joining our squad. Although Michael Finley and Brent Barry are ready to contribute now, the higher ceilings of the younger prospects is something we covet at this stage. I am naturally skeptical of my shot at landing the number-one selection, but I certainly hope not to fall out of the top four.


Falling only a single slot felt like a victory after the ping pong balls finished bouncing. We can only hope the Cavaliers or the Timberwolves are enticed by Finley or Barry, in order to free up Garnett for ourselves. However, if I am being honest, missing out on Garnett wouldn't be the end of the world considering how much potential this draft yields. My main hope at this point is to turn some of the also rans which we will likely pick up in the 1995 NBA Expansion Draft and flip them for picks. Maybe then we can gather a second quality prospect who can contribute off the bench.
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Unread 08-05-2018, 09:20 AM
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Granite Armadillo Granite Armadillo is offline
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1995 NBA Expansion Draft












We entered the 1995 NBA Expansion Draft with the second selection. Our main, and only target, was Lloyd Daniels. The wing was coming off of a disappointing season with the Lakers where he only notched 7.4 minutes per game, and shot 18.8 percent from three. But it was Daniels time with the Spurs which led me to believe he could prove to be useful player off the bench (or, at the very least a solid trade chip). Everybody else, though, was trade bait or was going to hit the waiver wire. B.J. Tyler, Jerome Kersey, and Lorenzo Williams were also nice role players who fit with what we are trying to build in Toronto, but we wanted picks and we wanted them badly. As soon as we moved past the Expansion Draft, it was time to make some calls.

TRADES

TORONTO GETS: Charlotte's 1995 Second Round Pick (39th Overall)
CHARLOTTE GETS: SF Trevor Wilson and SF Anthony Bonner

TORONTO GETS: Dallas's 1997 First Round Pick
DALLAS GETS: PF Jerome Kersey, PF Steve Scheffler, and SG Tony Harris

TORONTO GETS Denver's 1995 Second Round Pick (40th Overall)
DENVER GETS: C Eric Riley

TORONTO GETS: Indiana's 1996 Second Round Pick
INDIANA GETS: PG B.J. Tyler

TORONTO GETS: New Jersey's 1997 Second Round Pick
NEW JERSEY GETS: PG John Battle

TORONTO GETS: San Antonio's 1995 First Round Pick (15th Overall)
SAN ANTONIO GETS: Toronto's 1995 Second Round Pick (30th Overall), Charlotte's 1995 Second Round Pick (39th Overall), and Denver's 1995 Second Round Pick (40th Overall)

When the dust settled, only Lorenzo Williams, Lloyd Daniels, Donald Royal, and Jamie Watson remained on the roster. We were now ready to institue my long-term plan of tanking and building through the NBA Draft. While most of our hull was second round selections, I hope to pair those together for additional first round selections/players. The trade with San Antonio was emblematic of this. In our mind, the 1995 Draft was top heavy with a few potential role players lingering in the middle of the first round. With the fifteenth pick, I now hoped a Joe Smith, Eric Snow, or (fingers crossed) Fred Hoiberg would fall into my lap. I can only hope.
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  #8  
Unread 08-10-2018, 09:45 PM
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1995 NBA Rookie Draft

With the 3rd Pick... in the 1995 NBA Draft... the Toronto Raptors select...


With the 15th Pick... in the 1995 NBA Draft... the Toronto Raptors select...



Draft Results



When Kevin Garnett came off the board at number one, I wasn't too worried that Minnesota would take our next few options of Jerry Stackhouse, Damon Stoudamire, or Rasheed Wallace. Ultimately I picked Stoudamire, a dynamic point guard who we hope to be the offensive star our young franchise needs. While Wallace and Stackhouse were younger, it was Stoudamire's defensive ability which ultimately made the decision for us. With free agency on the horizon, our biggest priority will be to find some help for Stoudamire so we won't burn out his legs too quickly. For the 15th pick, the former Terrapin Joe Smith appeared like a solid option. Although extremely raw, Smith has the ability to develop into a solid off-the-bench scorer and shot blocker. The only other option we truly considered was Wyoming center Theo Ratliff. It was Theo's lack of scoring ability which caused us to shy away from the defensive stalwart. Smith will come off the bench for the time being, as we allow him time to develop.
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  #9  
Unread 08-10-2018, 09:49 PM
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thecoolestjedi12 thecoolestjedi12 is offline
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Looking forward to seeing what Damon can do for you in this one. He always turns out very well for me while playing 2k games and ven in FBPB at times when I see another team pick him up.
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  #10  
Unread 08-10-2018, 10:49 PM
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Yay, another diary in this section! Will keep an eye on this one
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  #11  
Unread 08-10-2018, 11:21 PM
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Just saw the two other diaries on this board and boy am I glad this place is starting to come alive. You know I'm down for this one, my friend, and thank you for the shout out.



Interesting choice, picking Mighty Mouse like in real life. I would've liked to see how Sabonis would've done as a centerpiece but I guess he'd be a tad on the old side at this point to get any longevity as "THE guy."


Will the Dallas pick turn into T-Mac? LOL Good luck and congrats on the bar exams!
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  #12  
Unread 08-11-2018, 08:53 PM
tg01 tg01 is offline
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Very excited that you took Stoudamire.....just the perfect pick!! Looking forward to what comes next!
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Unread 08-24-2018, 11:25 AM
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Granite Armadillo Granite Armadillo is offline
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Never fear, this diary is not dead! I was on vacation last week, and it took me a few days to catch back up. I anticipate having a new post up tonight/tomorrow, as I already made it through free agency.

Quote:
Originally Posted by thecoolestjedi12 View Post
Looking forward to seeing what Damon can do for you in this one. He always turns out very well for me while playing 2k games and ven in FBPB at times when I see another team pick him up.
Quote:
Originally Posted by tg01 View Post
Very excited that you took Stoudamire.....just the perfect pick!! Looking forward to what comes next!
I had some resistance to picking Stoudamire because of his size, but in the end his shooting ability, athleticism, and defensive potential were too much to pass up/made him the better prospect in my eyes. Now the task is to quickly build around him, just to keep from hindering his development. Seeing as he is far and away the best player on the Raptors, I have no doubt he will end up putting up big numbers in our inaugural season.

Quote:
Originally Posted by michgcs View Post
Just saw the two other diaries on this board and boy am I glad this place is starting to come alive. You know I'm down for this one, my friend, and thank you for the shout out.

Interesting choice, picking Mighty Mouse like in real life. I would've liked to see how Sabonis would've done as a centerpiece but I guess he'd be a tad on the old side at this point to get any longevity as "THE guy."

Will the Dallas pick turn into T-Mac? LOL Good luck and congrats on the bar exams!
Yeah, Sabonis's age was what kept him off my board. My only three options were Sheed, Might Mouse, and Stackhouse. I eventually was between Damon and Stackhouse, and it was the fact Damon was a better shooter which gave him the edge at the end of the day (despite my concerns about his size).

As for the Dallas pick, I am not optimistic that it will turn out to be a high draft pick. However, my hope is that I could use it to move up in the draft (or mortgage it for a better player). Ultimately I had no use for Scheffler, Kersey, and Harris, so I am glad I managed to grab something for them.
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Unread 08-25-2018, 08:04 PM
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1995 NBA Free Agency

Additions













Summary



None of the moves we made in our first offseason made huge waves. We threw around the excessive amount of cash we had on hand to fill our roster with solid, but not great, role players. We passed around a few team options, but nearly everybody needs to prove they deserve a second contract with Toronto. There is no doubt that we overpaid for some guys (i.e., Oakley), but we thought it was worth it both from a fan perspective (you want to give your fans a reason to show up, right?) and from a basketball standpoint.

The bigger news was Michael Jordan leaving the Bulls. Penny and Shaq won 63 games and a NBA Championship without Jordan (whose Chicago team only went 47-35 last season). With this newly minted Big 3, nobody will be even close to competing with the Magic.
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  #15  
Unread 08-25-2018, 09:18 PM
tg01 tg01 is offline
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A couple of important things to mention here.....first off....The Glove stays in Seattle! And second...Charles Oakley. Wow....you're really working to recreate those early Raptor's teams, I love it!!

Oh....and MJ...yada, yada, yada haha
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