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NBA Toronto Raptors

Can Rudy Gay and His Raptors’ Crew Realistically Make The Playoffs?

Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports

Rudy Gay had his playoff spot cemented on the Memphis Grizzlies. The trade that took him to the Toronto Raptors also took his secure postseason spot away.

The Raptors haven’t made the playoffs since the 2007-2008 season. Demar DeRozan, Kyle Lowry and Amir Johnson have all worked very hard to get the team through horrible management decisions.

The addition of Gay will hopefully bring the Raptors from just below mediocre to playoff contenders. However, it might be too late. Can the Raptors still make the playoffs?

DeRozan is one of the most improved players of the season. He’s a buzzer-beater. Gay is a franchise player and the Raptors can build the team around him.

If the Gay trade had gone down earlier in the season, the Raptors would breeze into a high seeded playoff spot. Now, they have to be play like an elite team to get over the brutal start to the season.

The Raptors sit at 18-32 but they’re 11th in the Eastern Conference. They’re serious contenders but the eight seed will surely get the Miami Heat in the first round so they need to avoid that spot.

There have been rumors that the Raptors have been shopping Andrea Bargnani for the better part of the season. First, the Raptors hoped to bring Pau Gasol up North for Bargnani but now talks have shifted from Los Angeles to Chicago.

According to ESPN, The Chicago Bulls and Raptors have engaged in trade talks about a deal that would bring the Bulls’ Carlos Boozer to Toronto for Bargnani.

Gay is the first step in the long process of overcoming the horrible start to the Raptors season but adding another element like Boozer makes it a little easier. Boozer is super underrated and Barganani is skilled but soft.

Boozer has been keeping the Bulls afloat in the absence of Derrick Rose. He’s the little bit of Chicago attitude that the Raptors need to make the playoffs. He’s a tough big and that is essential for the Raptors right now.

Why the Bulls are shopping him is unreported. He’s one of the elite big men in the Eastern Conference.

For the Raptors, it isn’t about statistics anymore. They have the talent. DeRozan and Gay put the points up. Johnson is clutch. They need that factor that puts them above the other teams that are attempting to make the playoffs.