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What the Raptors and Cavaliers were left with in the ruins

Jul 10, 2010, 10:42 AM EDT

This is going to come as little consolation, but here’s what the Cavaliers and Raptors got out of the sign-and-trade deals that ripped away their franchise players and formed one of the most powerful triumvirates in the league. Via ESPN:

The Raptors got the 2011 first round pick they traded to Miami, as well as the Heat’s own inevitably-20-plus draft pick. So basically, two first rounders and a trade exception for the top power forward free agent on the market. That said, it’s exactly what Toronto needed. They needed cap space, flexibility, and draft picks. It’s the modern rebuilding three-course meal.

The Raps now have to find a way to move one of their remaining huge contracts, preferably Bargnani or Hedo Turkoglu, not an easy task. They have to go through the same rebuilding pains as Memphis and Sacramento. But if they play their cards right, in two years they might be able to be back in contention.

Or, they can tank and possibly get Harrison Barnes next year and this whole thing starts over again.

The Cavaliers get the Heat’s first-round picks in 2013 and 2015, and the option to swap in 2012. If you’re wondering about the odd years, there’s a rule that says teams can’t trade their first round picks in consecutive years.

(As a side note, the fact that teams have to have rules to prevent them from doing potentially crushingly stupid deals does not speak to the owners’ perspective that the problem with the system is the system and not their own idiocy.)

The Cavs are in a similar situation, but if they really want to get back into the hunt, they have movable players with talent. They should hold a firesale, move ’em all. Move Jamison, Mo Williams, Deltonte West. Keep J.J. Hickson and Daniel Gibson, start over. They won’t. But that’s what they should do. Don’t make Cleveland sit through multiple years of suffering with the pain of not seeing James alongside his former teammates. Get it over with, get a high draft pick, and start over. This can be done.

But man, is it going to hurt.

  1. KG - Jul 10, 2010 at 11:41 AM

    While all other reporters are reporting other signings, you are beating the Miami thing to death. Crown their ass if you want too but the rest of the league will survive.

  2. DAVE - Jul 10, 2010 at 12:44 PM

    Lebron james story what a disgrace to to NBAowners and the commish
    Lebron is a small minded person and will never win a championship

  3. LeBron the "Quitter!" - Jul 10, 2010 at 12:55 PM

    He gave up in game 5 because it would’ve been very hard to leave almost a championship team (if they didn’t win it all) last year. Fans need to believe that the players have some sort of personal connection to them and clearly LeQuitter doesn’t. I am ashamed I ever thought he actually cared about Cleveland or his teammates. I won’t be fooled again. I hope he is booed all game long in Cleveland when he steps foot back in that city with his blood-stained knife…
    He’s a disgrace.

  4. FAQ - Jul 10, 2010 at 9:40 PM

    Raptor and Cavs fans will not let the Heat play in Toronto or Cleveland; they will stop the game by disrupting it with garbage tossed at Bosh and Lebron to show their contempt for these two opportunists of the worst kind.
    Let the refs stop the game on account of fan interference and call it a default win for the Heat, but don’t give them the satisfaction of playing a full game and trashing the crippled Raps and Cavs.
    Hit these three colluding rats with rejection and let their sponsors try to recover their soiled reputations … just like Tiger Woods … because fans in Toronto and Cleveland are not prostitutes to be had.

  5. Knicker - Jul 10, 2010 at 10:19 PM

    YES FAQ!!!! When the Heat visit other cities, the fans should sabotage the game that will be lost anyway. Toss stuff on the court to show the disgust fans everywhere have for this stacked monster. Riley, Wade, Bosh and Lebron are just exploiting the fans thinking they will be welcome. Reject them. Toss them. Stop them.

  6. Tinman - Jul 10, 2010 at 10:41 PM

    Don’t normally agree with FAQ…………

  7. JAMES - Jul 10, 2010 at 11:54 PM

    I doubt fans in TO will throw things at Bosh. He didn’t jerk the city around at all, it has been clear for a long time he was going. Plus, just not a Canadian thing to do.

  8. aaron - Jul 11, 2010 at 7:39 AM

    Toronto i think is better off with out Bosh. Bosh bogged the offense down and held on to the ball for about 10 seconds every shot clock. Toronto has a tonne of talent thats maturing over the next two years and should be in the playoffs by 2012. Watch out for Weems and DeRozan to have breakout years and bump their scoring up by 3-5 points each. Davis and ALabi should be able to develop into Defensive forces something Bosh was never. Bosh was terrible for their defense. He didn’t even get a block a game and was constantly giving up points to his power forward counter. My prediction is Raps get 40 wins the same as with Bosh.

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