I guess the Raptors really don’t rest a lot.
A Saturday night in late August arrives, it’s about dinner time and when we should all be wondering what patio we’re going to go sit on to have dinner or what we’re going to throw on the grill, they’re out there making news.
Not big news, of course, and news that I felt comfortable enough ignoring for a couple of days but news nonetheless and you can be sure I registered a bit of disapproval with Mr. Webster for disrupting – even briefly – an August weekend night.
Anyway, what they did was sign Svi Mykhailiuk to a contract and to even further load up the back end of the roster with guys who may or may not make it.
It’s a two-year deal, I have no idea about what partial guarantees there are but Mykhailiuk (and that’s a name that’s going to take some typing skill to nail all the time) is 24 years old, now with his fourth team going into his fourth season, he can shoot a bit, I have no clue whether he can defend or not but you can sure add him to the long list of back-end guys who may or may not (a) make the team or (b) contribute if they do.
You’ve got him, you’ve got Yuta Watanabe, there’s Sam Dekkker and Ish Wainright and Freddie Gillesie and Isaac Bonga and they’re all basically fighting for three, maybe four spots.
The interesting thing, and this has come through in every conversation I’ve had with Bobby and Masai since the process of putting next year’s roster together began, is this:
These are all basically kids with room to grow and while some will undoubtedly fail, there’s enough of them that the numbers would suggest a couple will make and maybe be able to part of something a couple of seasons from now when this under-taking should come to fruition.
I have no clue which of them will make it and which won’t but I think it’s far better to go into a training camp with a bunch of possibilities without fully guaranteed deals than it was to go into training camps with the likes of DeMarre Carroll, Rondae Hollis-Jefferson, Stanley Johnson, DeAndre’ Bembry or even Aron Baynes on guaranteed deals.
Nothing against any of those guys personally, they were all great to deal with and I hope they have long and productive careers, but the decision Bobby and Masai have made to go with big numbers of young, hungry kids and see who emerges knowing they won’t likely be counted on for years makes entire sense.
As it is, there are basically 11 spots filled: VanVleet, Trent, Anunoby, Siakam, Birch, Flynn, Barnes, Boucher, Achuiwa, Banton and Dragic so all these others are just looking for fill-in rolls. And depending on whether the Raptors can do a two-for-one deal for Dragic – and I fully expect they have something up their sleeves – there may be more than 11 spots set.
But if the Kids Without Deals fill in well and develop they may end up with more substantial roles in a couple of seasons and that’s more than could be said about the mid-career vets the Raptors used to round out the roster with.
Ye Olde Mailbag was ginormous yesterday (thanks to a whole lot of baseball questions for some reason) and since I’m kind of packing it in again until Friday, why not start filling next Sunday’s today?
Just click on email@example.com and say hello; I’m sure I’ll have time between sitting on Super Deck and the local patio to read them before the end of the week.
So day tennis this week and a three-game Blue Jays series that may ultimately decide the team’s fate this season?
I’m kind of looking forward to this week,
And I’m also looking forward to watching baseball on TV from Toronto when the entire broadcast crew is actually in the stadium. There will be insight, which is what viewers deserve.
There are many things I wish for on a regular basis but the one that’s at the top of my list today is pretty simple:
While I appreciate that our election campaigns are short, I cannot for the life of me understand the level of hate and anger and personal attacks that accompany them.
No wonder the country has a hard time finding enough capable, willing, intelligent, caring people to stand for election when they are subjected to such viciousness at every turn.
It’s sickening and dangerous and would drive all but the most civil-minded people from even throwing their hats in the ring.
Reasonable men and women can disagree on policy and what’s best, that’s a given. But this mob mentality, this evil is intolerable.
Please, somehow, be better.
I may not be the biggest fan of the trashiness of Bourbon Street but New Orleans is a great place to eat and I’m looking at the huge framed poster of Preservation Hall where we once listened to a great night of jazz that’s on the wall here at Casa Doug and I’ve certainly spent a night or two at Lafitte’s and we used to go watch Stumpy’s sister’s husband/partner/friend play at Fritzel’s jazz club so the city has some allure and fine memories.
Watching it crushed again by a storm yesterday and learning that the entire city is without power was devastating.
But they are resilient and they are strong and somehow they’ll come through again and life will go on.
The sad news also sent me in search of this from one of the best short-lived TV shows of all time.
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