It was ugly, to say the least, what happened Thursday night for the Raptors!!
Toronto Raptors fans experienced one of the most disheartening moments in the team's history on Thursday night as they watched Minnesota Timberwolves' star players D'Angelo Russell and Anthony Edwards score big toward the end of the game. Russell had 25 points, with 16 coming in the fourth quarter alone; Edwards had 23 points; and Kyle Anderson provided 20 points and 10 rebounds, propelling the Timberwolves to a 128-126 victory over Toronto. Even without Gobert and Towns, Minnesota managed to make a surprising comeback after being down 14 points midway through the 4th quarter, thanks to their impressive defensive show that kept Toronto from scoring any more than 7 points within 9:46. Analyzing why the Toronto Raptors stayed strong despite adversity and delivered a historic playoff performance. Despite having a sensational 62% from the field and 64% from three in the first half, Toronto lost to the Minnesota Timberwolves at home. You have to be kidding me!!
Painful. That’s the only word that accurately describes what I felt watching the Raptors get beaten so badly. From their first signs of collapse to the dramatic shot by D'Angelo, this game was one of the toughest to watch as a Raptors fan. I kept saying to myself; thank god, we got one! There's no way we're going to lose this game. There's no way!
The Wolves were star-less and outmatched on a second night of a back-to-back, yet they somehow managed to take away our hearts from us. Despite being down for almost the entire match, they fought back with daring shots and swift movements that could’ve been called bravery or skill, depending on how you see it.
The Raptors had no answer for the Wolves' tenacity; every answer for one shot had two awaiting strikes ready in response. The Wolves taught us a lesson.
Ujiri's vision for a second championship is fading away.
Ujiri's vision for a second championship is fading away. The Raptors have had one catastrophic loss after another and are now 11th in the Eastern Conference with a 20-26 record. They are failing miserably at their supposed strong spot - defence- and struggling with perimeter shooting, an area expected to be a weak spot.
please tell me: How you're planning to transform this struggling Raptors team into a championship contender again?
The disparities between Ujiri's goals almost seem insurmountable now, and all hopes of a second championship are long gone. After such losses and so far away from championship contention, how can the Raptors overturn these fortunes?
It requires a concerted change to reach even mediocrity again, let alone move closer to Ujiri's dreams. A new system needs to be implemented with swiftness and efficiency of thought, requiring unique solutions that must be accurate, value-based and intelligent beyond current standards. This must stem from strong values focused on the team's goals.
It is more than just playing better basketball; it is about remoulding the team into one that corresponds with Ujiri's ambitions. This will involve honing mental strength via expert game analysis as well as internal team dynamics like communication and collaboration within the changing landscape of competitive activities to push towards competitive greatness once more effectively. Ujiri has a lot of work ahead of him to overhaul a flailing organization into a powerhouse once again.
For Ujiri's aim for that elusive second title to become reality, it also has to take into account powerful lessons from prior experiences, such as their recent struggles. When facing failure, there is learning, but they must overcome such oft-failed cycles by gaining insight into why they were failing in certain areas and taking those ateliers forward while remaining balanced by viewing both successes or defeats in an equal light.
Is Ujiri's vision going to work in the ever-changing modern NBA?
Masai knows the daunting task: getting the team back on track. He realizes that it begins with tanking the rest of the season. But a reality check reveals an uncomfortable truth - we're already tanking. We can barely win even when we desire to do so.
He is no stranger to taking risks, and he isn't scared of making the hard choices, sometimes unpopular ones too. He warns himself not to get attached, not to indulge in sentimentality or tradition but focus on finding pieces that upside down our trajectory as quickly and effectually as possible.
It won't be easy, but it needs to be done now!
Why Committing To The Tank May Be Necessary For The Long-Term"
It started with some inconsistent play, leading to a series of losses. But it's worse than that right now. There's something big wrong with the team, and we all know that. Our beloved Raptors don't have what it takes anymore. We need to revolutionize our approach once again and create a winning culture.
There is worry among fans about the state of the team; now, it looks like the Raptors will have to make a difficult choice!
Should they try and stay competitive and stay true to their culture, or should they commit to tanking for the rest of this season to rebuild for the long term?
The fanbase is divided on what direction they want their team to take. Why would we try anymore when it comes to fighting for a play-in spot? The reality is that it won't matter anyway because that'll follow with an embarrassing exit in the first round of playoffs.
There’s pressure from ownership and media outlets pushing for immediate results -- not just regular season wins but also making a deep playoff run and staying competitive for an NBA title again soon. This is what they were supposed to do. Our roster has improved from last year, yet we are much worse. We're probably the worst we've ever been in the past decade.
Hardcore fans understand that trading both Fred VanVleet and Gary Trent Jr. and tanking might be our only chance now! We need to focus on the long-term development pieces -- allowing young players more playing time and restructuring positions around the veteran leadership of Pascal! If we play our cards right, the Raptors could be setting themselves up much better for upcoming years in terms of success instead of relying solely on past glory days, which may or may not come back.
The 2023 Draft class is going to be strong!
The Raptors are at a crossroads, and everyone is feeling the tension. With one of the greatest draft classes in recent memory this year, tanking has become a real option--but it could come at a price for some of its players. Specifically, Pascal Siakam will lose more than anyone else if the Raptors continue to lose games this season. We can't worry about that right now! we need to revolutionize our approach and not worry about players' feelings. If we don't get any better next year, Pascal will leave town shortly after, anyway!
Pascal knows who Pascal is and what he's capable of doing. Pascal is an All-NBA every time he steps on the court. He got it last year, and sure he has his sights set on reaching those heights again this season. If he succeeds in earning All-NBA honours again, the value of the supermax contract awaiting him next season would be locked in. But we can't worry about that right now!
Even if he falls short, he can still build up his free agency value for the following season by playing well next year. That starts now! We have to give him a good enough supporting cast for next year so he can start winning.
But with so much at stake for Pascal's future and the team's long-term goals, it's getting harder to find that common ground from which both outcomes can eventually be achieved. It will take leadership from all sides to ensure that no one is left behind as we continue this quest for excellence.