You’re foolish if you expected the Toronto Raptors to take down the Memphis Grizzlies on the road on a back to back without Andrea Bargnani. Bargnani was a late-game scratch due to a sore ankle, which is surprising considering there were no reports of this. The Raps actually hung around and were only down one at halftime, but an awful third quarter allowed the Grizzlies to blow this one wide open and they never looked back. DeMar DeRozan was somewhat of a bright spot with 16 points on 5-10 shooting, and Jose Calderon shot the ball well, but the rest of the team was quite awful offensively. Dwane Casey inserted Linas Kleiza into the starting lineup to provide more offense and I actually like the idea. Kleiza offers significantly more than any small forward on the roster, and once he gets going he can be quite productive.
The bigger news today is Bryan Colangelo confirming the fact that the Raps are currently looking for some help at the small forward position, especially with Landry Fields and Alan Anderson out. Mickael Pietrus has been rumored to be a possibility, and Colangelo has been targeting him for quite some time now. He would certainly be an upgrade over all of our current small forwards (with the exception of Landry Fields possibly).
Pietrus brings toughness, a strong defensive skill set, and a three point shot. So, basically everything the Raptors need right now.
I think Pietrus would fit in perfectly with this team and would certainly help a substantial amount as they try and claw out of this mess they are in right now. They would have to cut someone if Pietrus is signed, likely Dominic McGuire. Pietrus would like demand around the veterans minimum, maybe a bit above, but don’t expect anything more than 3 million per year.
Hopefully they do find some help, because that window is closing, and it’s closing fast.
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