If you missed Masai Ujiri's press conference yesterday, we have you covered here. My takeaways from what Ujiri had to say:
The Raptors getting their own D-League team is a huge development for the franchise. This is about more than just Bruno, but having an infrastructure in place for the team to develop their rookies moving forward (the Raptors -- if they don't trade it -- will have the 20th pick again this summer). Bruno was sent down to the Fort Wayne Mad Ants this season, a D-League team that's affiliated with 75 NBA franchises (all numbers approximate), and played sparingly, which doesn't help, especially when there's no minutes available for him on a team trying to win. With their own team, the Raptors will also be able to instill their offensive and defensive philosophies (insert 'what defensive philosophy' joke here) to their young players so they can ease into the system when they do get the call up. The Raptors may not get a team in time for next season, but Ujiri is pushing for it. And that's wonderful news.
Waiting to make a decision on Casey makes sense. This will probably be tackled separately eventually, but Casey returning as the head coach next year would be okay. Ujiri didn't commit to bringing him back yesterday, which is fine. Let the postseason play out, perhaps an appealing candidate will emerge as teams are eliminated. You always want to keep your options opened. Plus Ujiri has a lot of things to weigh this summer. There's no need to make a decision now.
This won't all happen in one summer. Ujiri mentioned 2016, and while Kevin Durant is the target (for us and the rest of the league), there will be plenty of free agents available and an abundance of money to throw around with the increased salary cap (again: for us and the rest of the league). If Ujiri doesn't like his options in free agency and the trade market this season, he may simply tinker with the roster, and maintain flexibility for next summer. Fans may not be happy with this, but Ujiri is all about what's best in the long term. Just keep that in mind in case there's not a flurry of moves as everyone wants. Also: see Bryan Colangelo era.
No more swearing before playoff series is the right move. I love when Ujiri gets on that podium and defends this city. But -- aside from losing both series -- the entire thing was taking on a sideshow feel. This is a hot-ish take, but little things like that keep us from being taken seriously in certain pockets of the online-sphere. Whether that really matters or not is another question.
Drake is safe. It appears. But seriously, Ujiri is keeping all his options opened, and even though he didn't go out of his way to criticize any of his players yesterday (no value in doing so, anyways), changes are coming. The extent of it? We'll find out soon.
What were your takeaways?