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DeMar DeRozan: Raptors Would Have Won With LeBron James

20 May, 2017, 08:00 | Author: Alberta Rodriguez

First things first. What becomes of Kyle Lowry?

"I will be opting out and that's as far as I've gotten", Lowry said.

"It's all Kyle Lowry's turtleneck's fault", one person wrote on Twitter about Kyle's appearance during the Raptors' final game of this season, while another added, "Why Kyle Lowry dressed like Wesley Snipes in New Jack City". "One of the hardest things to do is sweep teams". Lowry knew the Raptors' season was over after they lost Game 3 on Friday night, and he was feeling existential afterwards.

Some think Toronto is better off if Lowry walks. As long as ownership is willing to go over the cap, the Raptors are better off with Lowry. It's a make-or-miss league and the Raptors missed a lot of open shots. "We just didn't come out with the win". Unlike the previous three matches, the Raptors were in touch entering the final quarter, and even led by two points in the third quarter.

While Lowry's three-point shooting ability and veteran leadership are intriguing, signing Lowry to say.a four-year, $120 million plus contract just doesn't make sense for the Sixers, especially with the way they've been building their team.

GameTime's chime in on the future of the Toronto Raptors' roster.

"If we had LeBron on our team, too, we would have won", DeRozan said.

Dressing at his locker-room stall Sunday, Toronto centre Jonas Valanciunas politely asked a scrum of waiting media to clear a space.

The Raptors trimmed the lead to one point early in the fourth on a 3-point shot by Fred VanVleet but James answered with a 3-pointer.

The most obvious candidate is Valanciunas. He was set to be paid $12 million for each year of that contract, and it's possible that he could get a max deal from the Raptors or another team after opting out. However, he was much less effective this postseason.

Then comes LeBron, and he turns it all to ash.

Here is a look at the cumulative point differential for every eight-game stretch during the regular season (the line) and how the first eight games of the playoffs (red point) compares.

And that effort has not been limited to the starting lineup. Not only had they won the franchise's first ever best-of-seven playoff series, but they won two, and the experience of sparring with the soon-to-be National Basketball Association champions would be an invaluable one, win or lose.

The Raptors can trade Valanciunas and hope a second-year Jakob Poeltl is ready to assume starting duties.

That's the harsh reality many franchises have been forced to face over the years. He's not the rebounder Valanciunas is but, as has been seen in these playoffs, that's a skill that plays less importance. The Warriors still have a ways to go, but even with tougher competition awaiting, we should all keep in mind that they were missing their best player for several games, and are still without their head coach.

The problem is finding a team to take Valanciunas. Maybe he knows he can more money from Toronto.

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