RaptorsMatchup: Midseason Report Cards

This hasn’t been the most pleasurable of seasons for the Raptors and their fans (15-41 seasons rarely are), but fans can take solace that there is some hope for the future.

Without further ado, heres a look at our takes on the performance of the current Raptors squad up till now.

PLAYER Brownie Grade Comments Kingcy grade Comments
Alexis Ajinca C- Good looking player, saw him hit a few jumpers in the last game against the Miami Heat. Seems like he has a lot of defensive awareness. N/A Has a good toolbox, with a nice looking jumper and overall mobility. He’s had a few chances to prove himself, so I’m not holding my breath here, but there is talent.
Solomon Alabi N/A You tell me. I don’t know whats up. He seems like a clone of Thabeet so far. N/A Wasn’t getting any time in the big show. Glad they sent him down to the D-league. Decent stats in the D, 9ppg 6.5rbs. Lacks mobility and offensive awareness.
Leandro Barbosa C Has been injured a lot this season. I think he could really help on a winning team as a good scorer off the bench don’t know if that’s what the Raptors need right now. B- An up and down season for the Blur. He’s been playing with a sore wrist for the entire year and has had to change his shot to adapt. He had a great stretch of games before his latest leg injury. A consistently dangerous offensive force who gives the bench some much needed pop when in the lineup, but may be the odd man out come deadline.
Andrea Bargnani C+ Slumped during the middle of the season. Doesn’t grab boards but the team also isn’t using him like Dirk (which is why he was drafted). If he is the face of the franchise then he needs help because he is getting destroyed out in the media. B- Has stepped up nicely in Bosh’s departure and given the Raps a career high in points at over 21ppg. Rebounding and defense continue to be an issue with him. A terrible dilemma when you best scorer can’t help you get stops on the other end of the floor. Ideally he would be the 2nd offensive option in order to limit his minutes and maximize matchups.
Jerryd Bayless B- I like this guy. I think he has the tools to be a good PG but I don’t know if he can run a team. He can break down the defence and get to the rim at will but will he pass it out to the open shooters and slashers. I think he can learn. B- He’s showing me a lot of potential. Really impressive as a starter creating his own shot and getting others involved. Needs to accept his bench role better. Struggles to find his rhythm quickly coming off the bench unlike Barbosa.
Jose Calderon C Got his break with Jarret Jack being shipped out. I really don’t know how he fits as a player. He is solid PG without any defense but should that not make him a good bench player. I don’t know. C+ Is slowly regaining the hype he had in the ’08-’09 season. A rock solid pass first PG if I ever saw one. He defense is a liability but atleast he tries. A good role model for the kids and one of the better leaders on the team. Don’t want to trade him come deadline, but it may be a necessity.
Ed Davis B+ Showing a lot of potential as a PF. He could be a solid player in this league. His offensive skills still need some developing along with his free-throws but his defensive awareness and rebounding are great assets to build upon. A- The new old Chris Bosh? His game looks mighty familiar to that of the former face of the franchise as a rookie. Great knack for the ball around the rim and a good finisher in general. If he adds some bulk in the off season and a 16 footer, look out.
DeMar DeRozan A Really started coming on after a “slow” start at the beginning of the season. His shot and mid-rage has developed quite a bit. Triano knows how to use him (giving him a lot of screens). We are just waiting for him to take his game to the next level. A- Big step forward from Demar. Has really worked hard on his jumper. Now possesses a good step back fade and off screen pop. Playing with a lot more confidence and it really shows. Starting to be become a consistent #2 scoring threat on the team. Nice showing in the rookie/soph game too.
Joey Dorsey C- Rugged power-forward. I like him. He gives the team toughness B- I wanted the Raps to trade/sign for him or Amundsen since I saw them in summer league in ’08. Great rebounding instincts, brings toughness and moderate skill. Opened some eyes with his performance as a starter. Hopes he gets a few more chances down the road.
Reggie Evans B Hear and soul of this team but setback with his injuries. Where will he be next season? A I’ll admit I wasn’t on board with having Evans on the team even though I was a huge fan of him in Seattle. What a story this guy is. Easily the least offensively skilled player in the league and yet heart and desire conquers all. Robin to Bargnani’s batman.
Trey Johnson N/A Haven’t seen him play. N/A Good basketball name.
Amir Johnson B- Needs to become more consistent but has been playing out of foul-trouble last week or so but latest injury is not good news. B- Where has this jumper come from recently? I love Amir’s game. Not sure how its gonna work out with him and Ed though. Maybe Amir can play center at some point. A Mr. Everything player that any coach would love if he could just stay on the court for more than 2 minutes without getting a foul.
Linas Kleiza C- Disappointment to say the least. I saw him in Denver, thought he was a really good player but just hasn’t been able to put it together yet. Injuries have derailed any effort to get into a flow. C- Can’t blame Colangelo for this one. Everyone thought it was good signing but it’s been nothing but a rocky road so far. Inconsistent shooting mixed with terrible dribbling skills is bad combination. He is effective in the post, but his game is a total rollercoaster at this point.
Sonny Weems C Injuries have hurt him quite a bit as well. It seemed like him and DeMar had equal opportunities at blowing up but Sonny just hadn’t had the chance with his injuries. He also needs to carve out a role on this team. It seems like he doesn’t really have that yet. C I had really high hopes for Sonny this year. He has a really smooth game, smoother than Demar’s, but his shot is not as good. He reminds me of rookie DeMar right now. A lot of peaks and valleys for him this season (noticing a trend with this team?) but luckily for him he doesn’t have a lot of competition at his position. Don’t be another Joey Graham please.
Julian Wright C Don’t quite know his role but he seems like a glue guy that does a little bit of everything but no one thing great. C Wasn’t a fan of his game for most of the season as he looked like a deer in the headlight on the court. Has great length and gets in the passing lanes well. Is proving to be a decent all-round asset for the team.


3 Comments on “RaptorsMatchup: Midseason Report Cards”

  1. Tinman says:

    Generous for a team playing losing between 7 and 8 outta 10.
    Kleiza should drop to a D. Good case could be made to drop Sonny to a D as well.
    You overrate the one dimensional Reggie, an A, really? I accept the B.
    Totally miss the mark on Demar as well. His defense is as bad as anyone. I would grade him a B at best, based on expectations.
    Bayless a B? Whats our record since the trade?

    • sean brownie says:

      If we were going to rate the team as a whole, we would for sure not rate the team in a similar way.

      I think you are spot on with the Kleiza being rated a D. However, with Sonny, I saw some potential before he was setback by the injuries, which I did not see from Kleiza at all.

      You can also make a case for Reggie being rated even lower but I think we have here at Raptorsmatchup value “heart”. Between the two of us, we are more likley to talk about lunch-pail players than any superstar but then again we could be brainwashed by the Raptors TV commercials.

      Lastly, with both Bayless and DeMar, I ranked them solely based on potential. Bayless could ranked lower but with DeMar the rating is justified. He has upped his scoring each month this season among other positives (see our other article).
      In terms of his defense, I think it is the next level of his development as a player. His defense will also improve if the Raptors ever decide to put more emphasis on defense, as a team.

  2. kingcy says:

    You have to accept that this team is just so up and down and that pretty much every player rostered has had a good stretch of games along with the bad so there is a variance on the grades.
    Weems could have been a ‘B’ in late November, then got injured and has dropped off to ‘D’ currently. It’s a rough averaging to a ‘C’.

    Kleiza could easily be a D, but he does give the team a big body SF and some decent rebounding and shooting from time to time.

    DeMar’s defense is poor without question. You’re right about this one, I may have been too infatuated with the way his offense has progressed lately.

    Reggie’s shortcomings have always been known. That’s not in question here. When you sign someone for rebounding and toughest and he’s top 5 in the league in rebounding, I consider that a success.

    Bayless is a second year guard traded for a couple of good veterans. If you expected more wins post trade you were sadly mistaken. His rating is based more on his potential than anyone one else in the list.

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