Title: NBA Draft Should Kickstart Wild Offseason for Raptors
Date: June 21, 2017
Original Source: Vice
Synopsis: For my latest at Vice, I looked at what the next few weeks will mean for the Raptors, starting with Thursday’s draft.
At present, the basketball world feels like a beautiful ball of flames, pulsing through the NBA landscape without consistency, predictability, or direction. Log off for even a second, and fans run the risk of missing the latest in a steady, unrelenting stream of moves and rumors, almost all of them involving big names with league-wide implications that could reverberate well into and beyond the summer of 2018, the “next big offseason” for potentially wild free agent movement.
It all feels a little premature and may underscore how a new collective bargaining agreement, yet another salary cap spike, and the perception of inevitability that exists at the top of the league—unless you can somehow put together a comparable super team—have conspired to alter timelines, endgames, and plans, near and long term. It’s a mess, but it’s an entertaining one. When your phone is blowing up with Paul George and Jimmy Butler in rumors, with Dwight Howard, D’Angelo Russell, and Brook Lopez in trades, and with any of the Plumlees on the move, the inability to turn away is understandable. The NBA offseason, before it’s even started, is a veritable variety show of entropy, on par with and perhaps (OK, very likely) surpassing the entertainment value of the first three rounds of this year’s playoffs.
Through all of this, things have been fairly quiet with the Toronto Raptors, and you get the sense that’s exactly how they’d like it.