Thursday July 9 2009 - 2:23pm Eastern (Toronto, ON) 

I can’t REALLY say “I told ya so” — ’cause even I didn’t see THIS coming. 

However, I did tell most of you to chill out … when some of you were ready to jump off a cliff because of the Raptors apparent lack of depth after the Hedo Turkoglu signing.  I told you to relax … wait out the process … and trust that Bryan Colangelo would do something to shore up the depth of the Raptors’ roster. 

Well, he did.  And he did it in a big-time way!

While folks may not be running out and getting their Devean George and Antoine Wright jerseys printed right away, this rumored transaction (still not confirmed by any of the teams – or the league for that matter) is a major coup for Colangelo and his management team.

In one fell swoop, BC was able to shore up his depth issues at the 2-3, acquire two expiring contracts, unload a contract that went beyond next year (Humphries), get the free agent he wanted at the price he wanted, and retain the Mid-Level Exception … which would have been lost had this sign-and-trade not gone down.  Plus, Colangelo may have garnered some “good will” with the players in the league for “doing right” by Shawn Marion and getting him more money via the sign-and-trade … as opposed to just letting him walk; free to sign elsewhere for a cheaper rate.

Hard to imagine things working out better for Toronto.

It would appear that the Raps will not use at least part of the MLE to re-sign Carlos Delfino.  But could other free agents now be in the mix?  Absolutely.

And keep in mind that Toronto still has its Bi-Annual Exception as well.

But no matter who the Raps may sign, as it stands RIGHT NOW (assuming this 4-team deal is approved) this is how the 2009-10 Raptors look:

PF – Bosh, Evans
C – Bargnani, O’Bryant, Jawai
SF – Turkoglu, George
SG – DeRozan, Wright
PG – Calderon, Ukic, Banks

Things are starting to shape up for T.O.

E. Smith

—–

* UPDATE *

2:50pm Eastern

The trade is OFFICIAL now.  The Raptors have just sent out this release:

The Toronto Raptors announced Thursday they have acquired forward Hedo Turkoglu (HEE-doh TURK-oh-lue) from the Orlando Magic in a sign and trade, and forward Devean George and guard-forward Antoine Wright from the Dallas Mavericks.

As part of the four-team trade, the Raptors sent cash considerations to Orlando, a 2016 second-round draft pick to the Memphis Grizzlies, forward Kris Humphries, forward-centre Nathan Jawai and cash considerations to Dallas and facilitated a sign and trade transaction of forward Shawn Marion to the Mavericks. The Mavericks sent cash considerations to the Magic and also traded guard-forward Jerry Stackhouse and cash considerations to the Grizzlies in exchange for guard Greg Buckner. 

“We are very pleased to have landed one of the top free agents available this summer,” said Bryan Colangelo, Raptors President and General Manager. “Hedo Turkoglu is an ideal fit basketball wise, and his diverse skill set and size will make him a tremendous addition to our already offensively potent team.

“The fact that Hedo and his wife chose Toronto is a great reflection on both our basketball team and this exceptional city we live in.”

Turkoglu helped lead the Orlando Magic to the NBA Finals this past season, averaging 15.8 points, 4.5 rebounds, 4.8 assists and 38.9 minutes in postseason play. In the Finals against the Los Angeles Lakers, Turkoglu contributed a team-best 18.0 points, with 4.6 rebounds and 3.8 assists in 41.2 minutes. He had a high of 25 points in Game 4. In the Eastern Conference Finals versus Cleveland, he averaged 17.2 points, 6.3 rebounds, 6.7 assists and 41.0 minutes in six outings. He totaled a double-double in a Game 1 victory with 15 points and a career playoff-high 14 assists. In the second-round matchup with the defending NBA Champion Boston Celtics, he recorded a team-high 25-point, 12-assist outing in a series-clinching Game 7 victory in Boston. In the opening-round series against the 76ers, he hit the game-winning three-pointer with 1.1 seconds left in Game 4 in Philadelphia.

In the 2008-09 regular season, Turkoglu posted double digits in scoring in 72 of his 77 appearances, including 29 contests with 20-plus pints. He also contributed five or more assists in 40 games. He had a season-high 35 points versus Portland on November 10. He added season bests of 11 rebounds on two occasions (January 29 versus Cleveland and January 2 versus Miami) and 11 assists February 26 at Indiana.

In the 2007-08 season, Turkoglu recorded career bests of 19.5 points, 5.7 rebounds and 5.0 assists in 82 games en route to being named the 2008 NBA’s Most Improved Player. 

Turkoglu has averaged 18.2 points, 5.5 rebounds, 4.9 assists and 36.7 minutes in 159 regular season games over the past two seasons. He has shot .818 (638-780) from the free throw line and .379 (300-791) from three-point range. In 34 postseason outings over that same span he has averaged 16.3 points, 5.1 rebounds, 5.0 assists and 39.2 minutes, while shooting .826 (133-161) from the foul line and .356 (42-118) from beyond the arc.

Turkoglu, 6-foot-10, 220 pounds, averaged double figures in scoring in each of his past five seasons in Orlando. He has also appeared in an average of 77.5 games over the last four campaigns.

The nine-year NBA veteran has averaged 12.3 points, 4.2 rebounds, 2.7 assists and 27.9 minutes in 678 career regular season games. In 82 postseason contests, he had contributed 11.4 points, 4.5 rebounds, 3.0 assists and 30.7 minutes. He has appeared in 10 or more playoff games in five of his nine seasons.

Turkoglu was a first-round selection (16th overall) by the Sacramento Kings in the 2000 NBA Draft. He spent three seasons with the Kings and one in San Antonio (2003-04) before signing as a free agent with the Magic in the 2004 offseason.

Prior to coming to the NBA, Turkoglu averaged 8.3 points, shooting .569 from the field, 3.9 rebounds and 1.6 assists in 87 games in four Turkish Professional League seasons (1996-2000) with Efes Pilsen, which is located in Istanbul where he was born and raised. He also averaged 8.4 points, 3.5 rebounds and 1.7 assists in 50 EuroLeague Tournament games with Efes Pilsen during those four seasons. He helped lead Efes Pilsen to the 2000 EuroLeague Final Four, averaging 13.6 points, 4.6 rebounds and 2.7 assists in 22 tournament games.

His full name is Hidayet Turkoglu, and is nicknamed Hedo. His NBA signing in 2000 with the Kings was a national sports event in Turkey, with a nationally televised press conference.

George is a 10-year veteran who has played seven seasons with the Los Angeles Lakers and the past three with the Mavericks. He signed with Dallas as a free agent in 2006.

He played in four NBA Finals (2000, 2001, 2002 and 2004) as a member of the Lakers, winning three consecutive championships from 2000-02.

George, 6-foot-8, 235 pounds attended Augsburg College in Minneapolis, and was the 23rd overall selection by the Lakers in the first round of the 1999 Draft. His produced his best statistical season in 2003-04 with career-best averages of 7.4 points, 4.0 rebounds and 23.8 minutes in a career-high 82 games.

George has averaged 5.6 points, 3.2 rebounds and 18.7 minutes in 585 career contests. He has appeared in 86 postseason outings, averaging 5.0 points, 2.7 rebounds and 17.2 minutes.

George was named Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Most Valuable Player two consecutive years (1997-98 and 1998-99).

Wright completed his fourth NBA campaign in 2008-09. He has split his time between the New Jersey Nets and the Mavericks. He was taken 15th overall by the Nets in the 2005 NBA Draft. He was dealt by the Nets to Dallas on February 19, 2008.

Wright, 6-foot-7, 215 pounds, equaled his career-high scoring average of 7.3 points this past season. He also contributed averages of 2.1 rebounds and 23.9 minutes in a career-best 65 games, including a personal-high 53 starts. He averaged 5.9 points in 10 games in the 2009 postseason, with five of those in a starting role.

Wright has averaged 5.3 points, 2.2 rebounds and 19.2 minutes in 223 career games. He has appeared in 28 playoff games, averaging of 3.9 points, 1.3 rebounds and 12.4 minutes.

Wright was the consensus Big 12 Conference Freshman of the Year in 2003. The former Texas A & M product was a first-team All Big 12 selection in his final collegiate season.

The Raptors acquired Marion from the Miami Heat on February 13, 2009. He became an unrestricted free agent July 1. He appeared in 27 games, all starts, with the Raptors where he averaged 14.3 points, 8.3 rebounds, 2.3 assists and 35.3 minutes.

The Raptors acquired Humphries from the Utah Jazz on July 8, 2006. He saw action in 159 games in his three seasons with Toronto, averaging 4.6 points, 3.2 rebounds and 15.9 minutes.

Jawai came to the Raptors in a July 9, 2009 trade from Indiana. He split the 2008-09 season between Toronto and the Idaho Stampede of the NBA D-League. He totaled two points and two rebounds in 19 minutes in six outings with the Raptors. 

28 Responses to “Colangelo’s Coup”
  1. 1.

    For those that are just tuning in as well, this is the rumored deal:

    To Dallas:
    Shawn Marion
    Kris Humphries
    Greg Buckner

    To Toronto:
    Hedo Turkoglu
    Devean George
    Antoine Wright

    To Memphis:
    Jerry Stackhouse

    To Orlando:
    Trade exception (worth a reported $7-$10 million)

    Depending on which reports you believe, Raptors’ guard Quincy Douby may be in the trade as well – on his way to Memphis.

    Doug Smith of the Toronto Star is reporting that it could be Nathan Jawai – not Douby – in the deal.

    - E. Smith
  2. 2.

    4pm press conference called by the Raptors … to unveil Hedo Turkoglu

    - E. Smith
  3. 3.

    E-Smith..any thoughts on what Raps do with the MLE?

    - Coach Blue
  4. 4.

    Eric can you please tell me what need Hedo adresses. Certainly not toughness. I think Hedo Shines mote on a team with a dominate 4 or 5. ie chris webber or dwight Howrd. I thnk we are still lacking toughness and a strong wing player. Eric if 90% of people call you this year jumping on the raptors banwagon, remember Im not one.

    - Thomas
  5. 5.

    Eric,

    Do you really see Derozan jumping into the starting rotation? That’s a huge leap of faith, don’t you think?

    BTW, what has happened to Joey G?

    For what it’s worth, I think BC has done a marvelous job thus far, but then again, I was excited with the Jermaine O’Neal acquisition last year, so I’m keeping my emotions in check this time. I still think this team is going to live and die by the health of Calderon.

    - Bobby
  6. 6.

    What exactly is the mid-level exception, and how does it affect the salary cap?

    - Alex
  7. 7.

    You mentioned using some of the MLE to sign Delfino. Can’t the raptors retain him without using the MLE? I don’t think they renounced him.

    - GrayZ
  8. 8.

    Yes Gray. That’s true.

    The Raps can retain Parker (if he ends up not going to CLEV) and Delfino using “Bird Rights” and not using a dime of the MLE

    - E. Smith
  9. 9.

    Hey Eric.

    BC seems to have the pulse on this off season and making sure he gets a contender. Even you mentioned, keeping the MLE is unbelievable.

    DeRozen looks good, but “if” BC decided to use the MLE to go after another Guard, who do you think might be a few guys that he could get for $5+ that could do the job?

    - F. C.
  10. 10.

    Eric,
    With all the respect to Brian, he himself admitted in the conference it was the financial guy that had this whole idea of including Orlando in the S&T simultaneously with the Mavs S&T. It was Cuban who pushed for Marion and scrambled to find a third team (Memphis) to dance…So please. And the players we’re getting (from Dallas I mean) – are good for ONE reason – their contracts are up by end of next season – as opposed to Hump.
    Of course, now being able to sign our FAs (actually only Delfino, as Marion for sure and probably AP are gone, and no one mentioned Joey anywhere) and not given up the MLE and BAE is huge – but remember – it’s not actually Brian’s work. And I don’t think being in Toronto – a place that actually Hedo liked and wanted to come to can be attributed to Brian as well…it’s just that…we’re in Toronto.
    Now to the bench – hopefully we can sign a good MLE guy (meaning NOT Delfino) AND bring Rasho back – so to actually have some scoring off the bench…sometimes – or you think that Ukic, Banks, Evans, Wright/DeRozan, George, POB, can provide that?…And even with Delfino…think about those nights he’ll be 0 for….many…

    - SJ
  11. 11.

    F.C it is L.Keliza he fits the bill and he would really fit the Raps and so long to Parker he was a great player to the Raptors but, they need a new wing and Keliza fits the bill

    - Raps Fan
  12. 12.

    bring back Parker and we’re set

    - illaz
  13. 13.

    parker is gone..and besides you would have too many at the 2-3 spot (wright, george, delfino, hedo, derozan)..probably will have delfino play some backup point minutes..kleiza would be a good fit as a second unit big with evans..but jarrett jack would be more valuable as a reliable back up PG and combo guy who can play at the 2 (and he went to g-tech with bosh)

    thomas: hedo is a playmaker from the 3 spot..can create shots for others..will take big shots in the 4th..can hit perimeter shots on post doubles

    - Coach Blue
  14. 14.

    …well maybe parker isnt gone…(see E-Smith’s latest)..

    besides we have marcus banks and quincy douby in the backcourt…

    - Coach Blue
  15. 15.

    and wright and george contracts are expiring

    - Coach Blue
  16. 16.

    I like Parker as a class act but when you clean house you sweep the floor; bring in Kleiza.

    Eric both the AP and Raptors own release state that Nathan Jawai is gone so you can take him out of your bench prognostications.

    That’s a lot of bulk off the bench.

    - Gary
  17. 17.

    Hey Eric, any thoughts on getting Marquis Daniels or Danhtay Jones to Toronto? Jones plays terrific defense, and Daniels isn’t bad either.

    - Yao
  18. 18.

    The people who didn’t extend their season tickets they are so stupid!!!

    This team can for sure compete for the 4th seat in the eastern conference in my opinion!

    - Raps Fan
  19. 19.

    Bryan.C is a genius!!!!!!!!!

    - Raps Fan
  20. 20.

    Umm…isn’t everyone getting a little bit over-excited here?

    I hate to be a realist, but…do you think anyone outside of Toronto is paying much attention to our beloved Raps?

    I highly doubt it.

    Why? Because, in spite of adding a nice player in Turkoglu, the team is still likely to be a .500 team, give or take 5 games.

    I like the moves BC has made, but I’ve seen this thing far too many times. I can remember the excitement in this town when Jermaine O’Neal was acquired — fans predicting 50 wins and a, dare I say, trip to the 2nd round of the playoffs!!

    Who knows what will happen this year. So much depends on variables such as Chris Bosh’s continued improvement (which did NOT happen last year), Jose Calderon’s improved health AND defence, and Andrea Bargnani finding a way to be tougher, and to play hard every single game.

    I see a playoff team. But, I wouldn’t be picking this team to advance past the first round.

    - brento
  21. 21.

    One other thing — anyone who calls Bryan Colangelo a “genius” is…how can I say this politely…umm…NOT a genius, themselves.

    Don’t we have to wait until the END of next season before showering out GM with accolades?

    The last I checked, this team had won ONE playoff round under his guidance.

    That’s pretty abysmal.

    - brento
  22. 22.

    My head hurts. Just give me the lineup on opening night.
    :)
    Let’s go Raptors!

    - Tim
  23. 23.

    Expect defence from Banks.

    - Rob from brantford)
  24. 24.

    Colangelo has partially atoned for the mess he made last year imo .
    Getting Turkoglu was a major move, esp. after it seemed Portland had him locked up.It got the NBA’s attention.
    I like the way he is restructuring the bench too.

    - Chas
  25. 25.

    no you dont have to wait until the end of the season to call BC a genius..he was able to get one of the top 3 free agents and still clear enough cap room to have the MLE and Bird rights to Delfino..BC doesnt play the games anyways..players need to produce..

    they have not won any playoff rounds under BC..they have been to the playoffs two of his three years..

    yes NBATV had a great feature on how Hedo will impact the Raps..

    Hedo a much better fit than JO..tho I liked JO too, Hedo is the playmaker the Raps need to take pressure off Calderon and take big shots in the 4th…

    only 3 players avg’d 20 and 10 last year..chris paul, dwight howard, and chris bosh..i understand raps fans frustrations but the facts are chris bosh is a very good player who needs help around him a la tim duncan

    yes calderon is the most important plyer on the team..he cannot get hurt…

    barney is 18 and 6 this year..many more open looks with hedo on the floor…

    why not past first round?? we now match up well with everyone except boston and cleveland

    - Coach Blue
  26. 26.

    dahntay jones signed with indiana i believe

    - Coach Blue
  27. 27.

    Hey, Brento this team looks very good and hey lets see what’s going to happen in the end of the season. But, right now for me this team can make it in the second round!

    - Raps Fan
  28. 28.

    Raps Fan…you know I’m a season seat holder…have been for a decade. Making the second round has, sadly, become this team’s pie in the sky.

    What a shame that this team has completely spun it’s wheels under the direction of BC. Poor signings, bad trades, and ridiculous coaching moves have all led to three meaningless seasons…yes, including the year we won the Atlantic — and then lost, yet again, in the first round.

    I am happy that the team has flushed out the players that were contributing nothing — but, keep in mind these are the players that BC brought in to help build around Chris Bosh. BC failed miserably, and he is very fortunate to have been given a second chance to build a winner.

    But, please realize I was being extremely facetious when I suggested that making the second round would be some sort of victory.

    In my eyes, either you are capable of making the final four, or you are rebuilding. While BC has mucked his way through his tenure, this team has spun its wheels, accomplishing nothing meaningful.

    As always, team chemistry and defensive intensity will lead to wins. And no fan (or analyst) has any clue how these factors will play out during the coming season.

    - brento
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