Bulls vs Raptors: GameDay Preview - Dinos Look for Back-to-Back Wins Against Chicago

Jonathan Daniel

While the Raptors take on the Bulls tonight, Adam Francis ponders a bigger event, the one regarding the future of Bryan Colangelo and his staff come season's end...

Yesterday one of my favourite writers in the Raptors' media circle, Tim Chisholm, penned some early thoughts on the direction of the Toronto Raptors' franchise.

If you haven't read it yet, please do, as it's a very apt summary of the current situation the team finds itself in.

One of my favourite portions was this succinct summation of the club's not so rosy upside:

This was supposed to be a breakthrough year for the Raptors. They were supposed to make a serious push for the eighth seed in the Playoffs. Instead they have a winning percentage (.385) that is barely above what last year's piecemeal rebuilding roster (.348) managed. Their defensive efficiency, the part of their game that was supposed to anchor their ascension, went from 12th last year to 22nd this year, despite the importation of what was thought to be several superior defensive cogs. Worse still, the team's payroll has ballooned so tremendously over the last nine months that the club has next to no financial flexibility left to improve with. They are basically capped-out as a tenth-seed with zero All-Stars on the roster and no draft pick this coming June. It's hard to find a lot of room for optimism in that scenario.

Of course it's not quite as dire as that.

As Chisholm notes, there's significant upside in their rookies, especially Jonas Valanciunas, who looks like a future stud, and various other options at the club's disposal like the amnesty clause, all available.

But the bottom line is that even with these rays of light, it's hard to see a huge jump in improvement from the club. After all, again as Chisholm points out, this club certainly has more talent than last year's bunch, and yet has only been percentage points better in terms of record, and much worse defensively. (And post-Rudy Gay, barely better offensively.)

The question Chisholm ponders is one we've all been examining for quite some time here at the HQ:

"At what point does patience become delusion?"

Bryan Colangelo has preached patience for about five years on both micro (Andrea Bargnani) and macro levels (the infamous "we're not that far off" speeches during the Hedo Turkoglu era), and at some point it's time to say enough is enough.

Is that time now?

As the Raptors face the Chicago Bulls tonight for the second time in a row and continue to close out their disappointing 2012-13 campaign, it's a question we'll continue to examine. It's easy to say yes, time's up for BC based on his body of work (hardly an invigorating one), but the replacement has to be an improvement. As maligned as Colangelo's recent tenure has been, it's quite possible that MLSE brings in a managerial crew that then turns the Raptors into the Bobcats.

It's a bit like the Toronto housing market.

After buying your first property and seeing it rise in value, one may want to sell to reap the benefits of said rise in value.

One problem. Unless you're moving outside of Toronto, the next property you purchase will most likely eat into the vast majority of the profit you just made.

So it's easy to say "yep, let's sell," when you fail to consider the second part of the equation, purchasing your next accommodation.

And herein lies the issue for Raptors' fans.

Do you stick with the devil you know, or opt to start fresh, which could mean yet another complete rebuild and potentially another two or more seasons of playoffless basketball?

I think we all know my take on the matter and once the season ends, it's one I'll be penning at least a couple articles on, but for now, I wanted to simply put Chisholm's piece front and center as something for fans/readers to ponder as we cap this season off.

Yelling "fire BC" is the easy part.

The hard part is what comes after that as Toronto's next GM could just as easily be the next Rob Babcock as the next Sam Presti.

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