Sunday, October 31, 2010

What Kind of Raptors Fan Are You?

With the 2010-2011 NBA season already well underway, I ask every member of Raptors Nation this: What kind of Raptors fan are you?

Going into our first season without Chris Bosh, we can still REALISTICALLY go one of two ways.

1. Overachieve and scrape by with the 7th or 8th seed.
2. Meet expectations and finish at the bottom of the league.

Most casual fans would look at the standings, see a lowly "1-4" record next to the Raptors, and feel validated in their lack of confidence within the team. But for those who have actually watched the games this year, you know the Raptors have been been in every game they've played so far.

When it comes down to it, the Raptors have been within striking distance of a win in each of their first five games (yes, even against the Jazz and Lakers). One of the other encouraging signs revolves around the intensity and effort this team has shown night in and out. Regardless of how many points we may fall behind, this year's installment of the Toronto Raptors refuse to hang their head and give up.

So with that in mind, which route would you like the Raptors to go?

There's no question the players want to make the playoffs. You don't make it to the NBA without that insane obsession of winning. These are professional athletes, all they've been used to is success.

I'll go out and say this now. If the Raps continue to play like they've been playing on this road trip, they will be within reach of one of the last two playoff spots. It's a funny thing to say, but this team is better than last year's in some aspects.

But is that what's best for the franchise long term?

If expectations and predictions come to fruition, the Raps will likely come out of this with a top 3 pick in next year's draft. Don't worry Raptors Nation, I know, the draft has hurt us plenty of times in the past. But truth be told, it'll be hard to mess this one up. And if you take into account our last two drafts, we've come away with two very nice pieces in DeMar DeRozan and Ed Davis.

Imagine pairing these two up with the likes of Kyrie Irving or Harrison Barnes?

Suddenly, the Raps would actually start to look more like the "Oklahoma East" DeRozan coined us to be earlier in the season.

Establishing a winning culture? Or roll the dice for the big payoff?

The Raps will go one of two paths. Which one are you holding the sign to?

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