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View Full Version : Why do some posters consider the Toronto Raptors a mistake? Also, I'm giving my 3 tickets for tonights game Vs the Pistons.



Roaming Gnome
02-23-2011, 12:35 PM
After reading many different threads here on the digest, I've often wondered why a lot of you still consider the Toronto Raptors franchise a mistake or even worthy of contraction? Last I checked the Raptors have had very little success on the court and can't keep marquee talent for a multitude of reasons, but has some of the best "gate" numbers in the league. Many of our posters in that area constantly tell us that the Raptor's ownership is making money hand over fist in a city that also supports MLB and NHL teams that do very well in their respective leagues in attendance. Hell, if you read the tea leaves right... They are a top candidate to land a struggling NFL team be it Buffalo (who played a regular season home game or two there) or Jacksonville.

Just wanted to ask this considering it's a diversion from all the trades that we're not going to be doing over the next 30 hours.

If you're interested in my tickets... give me an answer to the question above and I will select someone that can use my 3 tickets for tonight's game versus the Pistons. Even if your answer is just a quick hitter... give me something!

I'll pick someone before 5pm, so check back at that time so I can get the winners info so I can leave the tickets at Will Call.

LetsTalkPacers
02-23-2011, 12:40 PM
No need for tickets, but I think a lot of players dont want to play there for whatever reason. Carter, McGrady, Bosh all left at their first chance. I also dont like the tax break they get due to not being in the US. This is the national basketball association and yet Toronto is the only non US team. (just saying) Aside from that i really have no reason. Well they suck too, but that can change every year.

pacergod2
02-23-2011, 12:41 PM
Toronto would be something like the seventh largest city in the US. The population numbers make all the sense in the world to keep the franchise around. Plus, imagine all of the other Canadians who root for Toronto and aren't anywhere near the franchise from a distance standpoint.

k_lewis93
02-23-2011, 12:42 PM
My take is that they just aren't able to aquire guys who they need. When they had bosh they should have been trying hard to aquire guys around him. IMO they are just another team like let's say the wizards who in all reality have almost no chance of winning a championship cause no one wants to go there. A good reason could be b/c it is outside of the US.

k_lewis93
02-23-2011, 12:43 PM
Also would love to go to the game tonight :)

Merz
02-23-2011, 12:48 PM
Not saying everyone feels this way (I certainly don't) but a lot of people have a stigma against Toronto just due to it being "boring Canada" and not the United States. The ignorance of Canada is pretty strong in a lot of people in the US. So many people look at me like I'm insane when I tell them I would love to live in Vancouver. They think Canada is nothing but ice-fishing, hockey, and eskimos.

Roaming Gnome
02-23-2011, 12:48 PM
Personally, I like the Franchise and always thought that it was a good idea considering the sheer size of the city and it's multicultural aspect. As for it's attraction to the players, I can't see it being much different then ending up in Indianapolis, Minneapolis, Milwaukee, or Salt Lake as an undesirable location.

I also thought Vancouver would work out, but the team ending up back in the states obviously proved that wrong, however Micheal Heisley's track record as an owner probably contributed to that franchise arriving in Memphis (a graveyard for major league sports teams).

Pacers4Life
02-23-2011, 12:49 PM
I have family who live in Canada.. More specifically an u cle and a cousin who live inToronto.. I think pacergod2 nailed it.. Toronto is HUGE. And the demand for Raptor tickets is about the same as Pacer tickets.. They effing LOVE they're hockey like we do our colts. Less tickets available for the hockey games though.. So lets go to the raptors game.

As for them making a mistake.. Idk how they did. Bosh was leaving and both parties knew that.

*take me out of the running.. I have an event tonight.. Grrr

Since86
02-23-2011, 12:50 PM
It's not about it being in Toronto, it's about the league getting too big to be able to support the franchises they already have.

The NBA can't handle this big of a league. While there is a LOT of talent out there, there isn't as much as what they're being paid. It causes mediocore players to get larger paychecks, it causes superstar players to get larger paychecks, and it causes "scrub" players to get larger paychecks.

Even if you overpay each guy just a little bit, when you multiply that by 15 per team, that's a ton of money.

Businesses can afford to overpay on a few services or items. They can absorb that extra cost, but they can't do it with every investment. They're just not getting a good return on them.

If you cut the total number of teams down, it causes the total number of players in the league to go down. So the guys that are the 15th men now, get pushed out. But it also causes guys that are 6th men on teams to turn into 7th men, or lower, making teams stronger from top to bottom.

IMHO, it just waters down the league on multiple levels. Financially and talent wise.

It really doesn't matter to me that it's in Toronto, I think they've done better than some US cities in regards to supporting a team. But I would have rather saw a city that couldn't support the team they have, lose it and Toronto (or another city) gain that team, rather than just adding another team into the mix.

Look at the NFL, they can afford to expand because cities would be dying to get their own teams. Hell, the second largest market in the US doesn't even have a NFL team, while the NBA has TWO teams there.

A smaller, stronger, league is better than a bigger, less stable, league IMHO.

I don't think I can use the tickets, BTW. When you drive a 4x4 Dodge, gas at $3.30+ really puts the clamps down on your wallet.

mb221
02-23-2011, 01:23 PM
I believe it is a multitude of reasons that people are negative towards the Raptors, and most of those reasons have already been covered in this thread. I think it is a combination of the anti-Canada thoughts as well as the overgrowth of the NBA in general. Personally, I can see both sides of the argument. The Raptors certainly aren't the worst in the NBA in terms of drawing a crowd (17th @ 16,000/gm), so that is not a reason for their contraction. Due to the multi-ethnic makeup of Toronto, it seems like a perfect place for the NBA to expand on a global level which is what they seem to be interested in at the moment, so that alone will probably keep that franchise alive.

If I end up with the tickets, thanks again! If not, thanks again for being so kind to offer them up to PDers. Also thanks for starting a topic of discussion that is pretty interesting.

ballism
02-23-2011, 01:55 PM
I suppose it's because the financial side is an afterthought for most casual fans. It's kind of like Clippers. Clips are a very profitable franchise, yet there will always be lots of fans who would ask for its contraction.

Same goes for Raptors. The team has been a talent factory for other teams, and it appears that owners are pretty happy to just cash their profit checks. Vince, TMac, Bosh. A bunch of great talent who made lots of money for themselves and their teams, but never won. It gets frustrating after a while. A casual fan jumps on their bandwagon, and after a few fun but mediocre years it wears off, and then kaboom the team is rebuilding again.

Hibbert Laugh
02-23-2011, 02:01 PM
First off, let me say I don't consider the Toronto franchise a mistake. However, I do think that many feel that way because of the difficulties in the Raptors establishing a true rival in the league. Toronto came into the league at the same time as the Grizzlies when they were in Vancouver, and I would imagine that the thought was that the Raptors would have an inter-country rival in the Grizz as well as some inter-conference (secondary) rivalries with the teams from the "nearby" geographic areas (i.e. Detroit, Philly, Boston or NY) thereby helping themselves and all of teams in those areas, even if only slightly, increase ticket sales or viewership. However, it doesn't seem that those rivalries have been established. Perhaps this is because of some anti-Canadian sentiment among American NBA fans, or perhaps it is because of something else, but I think that those that say that Raptors are contraction worthy simply mean that, were Toronto gone (or in Kansas City, Las Vegas, etc.) those fans of the other 29 teams would not miss their presence.

And thanks for offering up your tix to someone on PD. I'd love to have them if I get selected.

Mark
02-23-2011, 02:23 PM
I think fans like to see players that are energized to play for their team. Toronto has never really had that. For whatever reason, players just haven't made a great connection with the city or its fans. Couple that with a few poor management decisions and you have the end result.

All that said, a lot of it has to do with luck. They didn't give TMac a great opportunity to grow into the player he became in Orlando. Carter may be the most unmotivated guy in the league in the past 10 years. And, we all know Bosh wanted to get out of there.

You are absolutely right though. Toronto is a decent NBA city now, great size and location (between midwest and east coast). The fans there just haven't been given a ton to get excited about.

I would love to see the game tonight with my roommates. Would sure beat us all yelling at the tv. So kind of you to offer your tickets to the faithful PDers.

Since86
02-23-2011, 02:35 PM
I have a question. Is there really an anti-Canadian bias?

I make Canadian jokes, but I also make redneck jokes. I don't view Canadians as inferior.

I also think that it's true players aren't excited to play there, but not because it's in Canada, but because of the climate and population just in general. It's the exact same reason why they aren't lined up to play in Minnesota, or Indiana, for that matter.

And for the record, Canada sucks.

CableKC
02-23-2011, 02:36 PM
My take is that they just aren't able to aquire guys who they need. When they had bosh they should have been trying hard to aquire guys around him. IMO they are just another team like let's say the wizards who in all reality have almost no chance of winning a championship cause no one wants to go there.
Unfortunately, you can say the SAME EXACT thing about the Pacers.

But let's be clear about this...the Raptors did try and was willing to spend the $$$ to improve the Team around TagAlong. The Raptors overpaid to get Hedo at the last second by outbidding the Blazers to pair next to TagAlong and Bargnani. It's not their fault that Hedo sucked it up and that TagAlong decided to bolt regardless.


A good reason could be b/c it is outside of the US.
Something to note...Toronto maybe a small Market Team like Indy...but my guess is that if a FA was narrowing down the choice between Toronto and Indy and the $$$ was the same....they would choose Toronto over Indy. Toronto is a major Metropolitan City in Canada ( the biggest I think )...they have a very large mixed pot of European population that may appeal to some Players.

If the NBA decides to contract....they would be smarter to close a smaller market Team in the US and leave the only major City in Canada with a Team so that they have some visibility into the Canadian Market.

BillS
02-23-2011, 02:36 PM
Blame Canada!

Jared Sullinger
02-23-2011, 02:39 PM
Toronto is a huge market and the Raptors have one of the most passionate fan bases going, at least from my message board experience.

k_lewis93
02-23-2011, 02:43 PM
Unfortunately, you can say the SAME EXACT thing about the Pacers.

But let's be clear about this...the Raptors did try and was willing to spend the $$$ to improve the Team around TagAlong. The Raptors overpaid to get Hedo at the last second by outbidding the Blazers to pair next to TagAlong and Bargnani. It's not their fault that Hedo sucked it up and that TagAlong decided to bolt regardless.


Something to note...Toronto maybe a small Market Team like Indy...but my guess is that if a FA was narrowing down the choice between Toronto and Indy and the $$$ was the same....they would choose Toronto over Indy. Toronto is a major Metropolitan City in Canada ( the biggest I think )...they have a very large mixed pot of European population that may appeal to some Players.

If the NBA decides to contract....they would be smarter to close a smaller market Team in the US and leave the only major City in Canada with a Team so that they have some visibility into the Canadian Market.

Yeah I agree but atleast Indy gets somewhat of recognition in the NBA. We are starting to make headlines. Honestly I really forgot Toronto was even a team. IMO if they were to leave Toronto for some reason (which probably won't happen) it wouldn't hardly make headlines. Just my opinion.

FlavaDave
02-23-2011, 02:43 PM
Toronto is an awesome city. Not sure why players wouldn't want to stay there... beats me. As for fans suggesting contraction, I'm sure it's an issue of the Raptors not being very competitive and their reputation of losing their superstars. Most people don't think of it as a money thing. Most people aren't digging up the attendance numbers and the lease agreement.

P.S. Pick me! Pretty please?

BillS
02-23-2011, 02:47 PM
I seem to recall players talking about the tax situation in Toronto being one of the problems with being on the Raptors.

MrSparko
02-23-2011, 02:53 PM
The tax situation people. A max contract from Toronto is worth so much less than the same contract in the states. I assume at least that has to be a big reason.

BillS beat me to it.

Trophy
02-23-2011, 03:05 PM
The only franchise I can see at most moving away is the Kings and possibly the Hornets if they don't find an owner in New Orleans in the near future.

I don't see the league folding any teams.

For the most part, 30 teams can support themselves and the league is managing them fairly well, but need to be fair.

Psyren
02-23-2011, 03:10 PM
I think the Raptors are considered a "mistake", by some, if you will simply because it's not a prime destination for most players. I do however, think international players love it. It's a very diverse city, and close to NY and other main US attractions.

I don't view them as a mistake, I just think some do consider them a mistake simply because they aren't fans of the location. Some might argue Indy, Milwuakee, Cleveland, Utah and others are a mistake as well, I suppose.

And I'd certainly be interested in the tickets as well :)

Unclebuck
02-23-2011, 03:21 PM
I would contract about 15 franchises before I contracted the Toronto franchise

Brad8888
02-23-2011, 03:37 PM
Toronto is in a unique position as the only place in Canada that has NBA basketball. There are literally no competing markets in their country. Granted, they must compete with the entire US for players, but as far as advertising and merchandising opportunities for basketball fans, the Raptors have a big advantage there.

Is there as much interest in basketball there overall as a percentage of their population? I doubt it, but I am confident that there is plenty of interest to support their franchise, especially in the absence of other franchises to compete with in the entire country.

And yes, the taxes would be higher on player salaries, but the remaining dollars historically have gone further there due to favorable exchange rates. Not so much in recent years, though.

Unfortunately, I can't go to tonight's game. Thanks for the offer though!

DocHolliday
02-23-2011, 04:24 PM
I'm not really sure why people feel that way; I don't agree with them.

I'd like to go to the game.

SMosley21
02-23-2011, 04:39 PM
I think most of the people who consider the Toronto Raptors a "mistake" are people who aren't really paying attention to the big picture and are just going with the general sentiment of late. The Raptors have been profitable team from everything I've ever heard, and typically have been competitive almost their entire existence and have always had some of the best, and in some years, the best attendance figures in the NBA.

Basically, people are just talking out of their butt lately.

pacerDU
02-23-2011, 04:54 PM
The advantage for the Raptors at the moment is that they're Canada's only team. They've even moved quite obviously to strengthen that image by placing the maple leaf on the back of their jerseys and changing their colours (like that spelling? ;)) to red, white and black.

They've got a great fan-base and good crowds despite rarely having much on-court success. I think some of its difficulty in keeping players is that it has a stigma of being a "minor-league" NBA team. People seem to consider it a proving-ground rather than a final destination. I think some of that has to do with them being located in Canada. My feeling is that a lot of players want to "go home" eventually.

What you'll notice with them is that recently they've really targeted non-American players. I think they've done that as there isn't as much risk of losing those players to the other teams because they're not from America in the first place. At one point half their team was comprised of non-Americans. Their current roster comprises Bargnani, Kleiza, Calderon, Alabi, Barbosa, Ajinca who are all from outside North America and until recently they had Australian David Anderson. Their coach Jay Triano is Canadian.

Despite their difficulty in putting a winning product on the court, they still get good support (at least in Toronto). Basketball is a distant third to hockey and football (both Canadian and NFL) in Canada's sporting consciousness (it may even be behind baseball).

I think the Raptors are doing a decent job considering their barriers.

Hibbert Laugh
02-23-2011, 05:04 PM
Despite their difficulty in putting a winning product on the court, they still get good support (at least in Toronto). Basketball is a distant third to hockey and football (both Canadian and NFL) in Canada's sporting consciousness (it may even be behind baseball).

Put basketball behind lacrosse as well. I believe hockey and lacrosse were declared the national sports of Canada.

Roaming Gnome
02-23-2011, 05:04 PM
I think fans like to see players that are energized to play for their team. Toronto has never really had that. For whatever reason, players just haven't made a great connection with the city or its fans. Couple that with a few poor management decisions and you have the end result.

All that said, a lot of it has to do with luck. They didn't give TMac a great opportunity to grow into the player he became in Orlando. Carter may be the most unmotivated guy in the league in the past 10 years. And, we all know Bosh wanted to get out of there.

You are absolutely right though. Toronto is a decent NBA city now, great size and location (between midwest and east coast). The fans there just haven't been given a ton to get excited about.

I would love to see the game tonight with my roommates. Would sure beat us all yelling at the tv. So kind of you to offer your tickets to the faithful PDers.
You've got the tix. Just PM me your Full name by 5:30. If I don't hear from you by then. I'll have to move onto someone else.

Naptown_Seth
02-23-2011, 11:13 PM
I want to do an extensive essay on all this FA stuff because I think fans are just being stupid with their complaints of doom and gloom.

Toronto might cost you taxes, but then you get something for those taxes too which includes health care and other changes to the social structure you interact with. Maybe less crime or better education, whatever. Cities like Toronto are so multi-cultural they provide a unique living experience to players as well.

You think guys like Nash or Love wouldn't want to play for a city like Vancouver with it's mild weather and endless outdoorsman opportunities? Not every guy is just looking for time on the beach or in the club.


And the attraction to Miami was also just a place with cap space that could/would pay James and Bosh to join Wade. That could have been Indy too, especially if Indy was one of the few spots with the cap space to make it happen.

If this crew gets it going and by the end of next season they look like the next big thing you might see some FAs wanting to jump on board to be part of a winning situation. Wins and money carry huge weight in all matters, and all teams can afford the same FREE AGENT costs.

Keeping guys, sure, then the soft cap helps NYC, but the Knicks had to get their payroll WAY WAY below the Pacers payroll in order to go after Amare or Melo.


I also dispute this "thinning of talent" thing partially. It has happened, but at the same time you've added lots of international talent and expanded the game in general. There are probably more teams in the hunt for a title this year than any year I can remember.

And lost in all the "big 3s" shuffle with people crying doom is the fact that the Spurs and Mavs and Thunder are all rolling along just as well as the Celts or Heat. Frankly the Knicks are still screwed IMO. A .500 team gives up young talent and a very productive PG to get another productive PG and a prima donna star who is fame seeking. Not exactly the type of move that gives you a ring. They go from 44 wins to 50 wins, whoop di doo in the title chase view of things.

As for the have nots, that's easy to explain - POOR MANAGEMENT OR COACHING, same as always. That's how it should be. The Clippers have awful ownership and for some reason were insisting on retaining a terrible coach. The Pacers GM insisted on retaining a terrible coach. The Nets are in a huge market and still had to do a total revamp. The Spurs are in a smallish market and haven't slowed down in a decade, and ditto the Pacers for nearly 20 years going into the end of Carlisle's run.


Look at the bad teams and then look at some of the moves in the previous 5 years before that bad season or bad run. It's not hard to figure out and it has very little to do with the big markets ruining the sport (or free agency).



For this thread that means Toronto is fine. Bosh didn't want to be his own man, he wanted to be a sidekick. Fine, move along. Hedo was a bust for the Raps, well that just stinks but it wasn't a Toronto the city thing.