Monday March 28 2011 - 2:32pm Eastern – Toronto, ON 

MLSE’s “ONE 4 ONE” event goes at Real Sports this evening … but there is certainly bigger news in Raptorland following Toronto’s 1-4 west coast road trip.

Mitch Lawrence – fine NBA writer for the NY Daily News – reported this on the weekend:


“Despite Toronto losing Chris Bosh and making little progress this season, team president Bryan Colangelo is returning to run the team, according the several league sources. That could be good news for D’Antoni, whose offense has been a bad fit for Anthony. D’Antoni, who worked under Colangelo in Phoenix, might be out of a job if Walsh leaves the Knicks at season’s end. For now, the Raptors plan to bring back coach Jay Triano, despite their awful season. But if D’Antoni becomes available, Triano could be jettisoned. Whether it’s D’Antoni or Triano, the Raptors want to build around rookie big-man Ed Davis and second-year guard DeMar DeRozan. They’re said to be open to moving Andrea Bargnani, who has been anything but an impact player since entering the league in 2007 as the No. 1 overall pick …”


This Colangelo saga — the President/General Manager who has a contract that expires on June 30  — is something that has been addressed a lot in this space in various VLOGS and blogs as well as Raptors’ pre-game shows … and the broadcast itself too!

Most of the latest ‘talk’ has stemmed from a Dave Feschuk article/column in the Toronto Star a couple of weeks ago that stated Glen Silvestri from the Teachers Pension Fund is allegedly holding up a potential new deal for BC.

From everyone I’ve talked to today … Colangelo has NOT be re-signed. 

So, with due respect to the Daily News, the story is not accurate.  Not yet.

I know and like Lawrence … so I don’t say this disparagingly … but perhaps his sources led him to believe that a contract extension will (eventually) happen or that it’s likely to happen but it’s not done yet.  According to all of the folks I (and Jonesy) have spoken to no extension has been offered yet … let alone signed. 

According to my sources (and this has all been talked about in this space and on the air already) … the Feschuk article is still the most accurate depiction of what is happening.  It basically goes something like this:

Larry Tanenbaum (and Richard Peddie?) wants BC back.  The Teachers aren’t so sure.  Silvestri especially.  And because of the votes the Teachers have on the board … if they truly want to hold back on re-signing Colangelo, they can.  At the very least … they can make it difficult for Larry (and Richard?). 

Further to that … it should be obvious that the talk of Jay Triano leaving and Mike D’Antoni coming in is very premature.  Not only is D’Antoni under contract with the NY Knicks right now (and next season) but Triano’s status will be determined by the GM in Toronto — whoever that may be!  And if’s it’s NOT Bryan Colangelo, one would have to assume that a new general manager MAY want to hire his own guy. 

IF D’Antoni is fired in New York and IF Colangelo is brought back there MAY be something to talk about.  But for now … those are A LOT of IFs.

On top of all of this … the Teachers are trying to sell-off their ownership in MLSE.  So that muddies the waters … big time! 

1.  You’ve got a GM – Colangelo – whose contract expires on June 30. 
2.  His new contract – if it’s coming – is being held up by an ownership group (the Teachers) that may not even be the owners when June 30 rolls around! 
3.  But if the Teachers are around still … they apparently don’t want the current GM. 
4.  However, will the other owner(s) — i.e. Tanenbaum — allow an out-going ownership group to control who the future GM/Pres. of the organization will be!?

And oh by the way … there’s a lockout (potentially) coming too!

With all of this going on, again, it’s premature to say that Colangelo has been re-signed.  He hasn’t.  Not yet.  And this story could continue for many weeks (months?) ahead. 

Have a good one folks.

E. Smith

18 Responses to “Not Done Yet”
  1. 1.

    Excellent article, Eric.

    Fans are at the mercy of owners and Boards in all sports.

    I wish the Teachers would buy out Tannenbaum and put Silvestri or a similar-thinking executive in charge of the Raptors.

    Look at the Jays.
    They replaced Ricciardi and Cito, who had done a far better job than Colangelo and Triano, with GM Alex and manager Farrell.
    It has created a different philosophy , more optimism and hope and buzz I think.

    The Raptors could use a similar housecleaning imo.

    - Chas
  2. 2.

    Thanks Chas

    I’ve stated before, I WOULD bring Colangelo back though.

    Too early to judge J.F. with the Jays … however A.A. has done a solid job.

    I understand your thoughts. Take care

    - Eric Smith
  3. 3.

    Good synopsis, Eric.

    While I respect BC and appreciate that he has a number of strengths, I have come to the conclusion that he won’t be back.

    In addition to the team’s poor performance and the fact that BC has been extremely well compensated for such below average results, I don’t think that having supporters such as Larry T and Richard P will do him any good in light of their woeful senior management of MLSE’s sports franchises.

    I suspect that the Anthony trade might have been the final nail in the coffin given what the Nuggets were able to obtain for him from the Knicks versus the meager returns BC got back for Bosh.
    Some board members must be scratching their heads big time wrt understanding what was possible in similar circumstances.

    As a fan the Raps repeatedly surrendering at either the beginning or end of games is getting old as is watching past Raptor players such as Delfino, Marion, Humphries and Turk contribute significantly to teams winning more than the Raps.

    Bottom line is I don’t see the board approving the same kind of money to resign BC in light of his track record and I don’t see BC taking much less for face saving reasons so a parting looks very likely to happen.

    - Dan F
  4. 4.

    Nice article Eric,

    Whatever people say I still believe in BC and JT. I believe that if they come back next season, barring lock out. The Raptors will start winning and will start making noise!!!

    Keep up the good work Eric!!

    Let’s go Raptors!!!


    - Anonymous
  5. 5.

    I think the Teachers pension board should focus on what they do best (finding businesses to invest in), and should leave the sports management to MLSE. MLSE was very successful before the teachers were involved and will be successful after they the teachers leave!

    - DAN from Cambridge
  6. 6.

    It is my belief that BC and Triano will both be back. They are both solid basketball minds and have a love for the game and seeing it grow in this country.

    BC has done nothing but create buzz during his tenure, when he put the team back on the map in 07. The buzz has certainly not panned out, but for the most part, fans and casual fans alike have been excited going into the season. BC has consistantely brought in talented players over and over, unfortunately he seems to be an easy sell on some players’ attitudes. No one can deny that BC has been a solid personanlity to have on the Raptors’ staff.

    I’ve said it before, but Triano is the best X’s and O’s guy the Raps have ever had. He is teaching the players how to think in advance on the floor and we can see those results in the aggresive fast breaks the team has run this year. Piece by piece Triano will have this team playing hard and have them in games at the end with a chance to win.

    I’d like to here some suggestions for replacments though…

    - T.J.
  7. 7.

    That’s the whole thing, BC hasn’t had a great track record, but he has been active.

    J O’Neal was a gamble with a huge contract, but he managed to move it, and we had cap space for Hedo.

    Nobody could have seen how the whole Hedo situation could have played out…but we got Barbosa, a solid piece.

    Losing CB, for essentially James Johnson wasn’t great…but we got the exception, which aided in getting Bayless & Johnson and buying out Peja bought us cap room. Never has this team been stuck under an albtross type contract or stuck up against the cap…not alot of teams can say that.

    Gotta build through youth, Bargs, DD, Amir, Ed Davis, a high pick this year…and cap space? Toronto could be a very interesting destination for a 6-7 year veteran looking for a home next year.

    - Pop Culture Poet
  8. 8.


    IYO, do the following 3 observations make sense:

    1. If Teachers is going to sell their stake in the team then it would be better/easier to do this without having a GM under contract for a period of years at a salary that a new owner might not find attractive and therefore inhibit such a sale from happening in the first place?

    2. If Teachers is not going to sell their stake in the team then it would be better/easier to do this without having a GM under contract for a period of years at a salary that they believe is no longer reasonable given the GM’s record of performance during his initial contract of employment with the team and the perceived losses – e.g. i. 47 wins in year 1/1st Rd Playoff exit, 41 wins in year 2/1st Rd Playoff exit, 33 wins in year 3/Playoff-Non-Qualifier, 40 wins in year 4/Playoff-Non-Qualifier, 20ish wins in year 5/Playoff-Non-Qualifier; ii. Loss of franchise’s best player; iii. Loss of season ticket holders; iv. Loss in overall attendance; v. Loss in Raptors’ brand value; etc. – which the organization has incurred during the course of the last 5 years?

    3. Thus, in both instances, Teachers is actually doing what it considers to be “right”, when refusing to re-hire the current GM.

    - Pop Culture Poet
  9. 9.

    “put Silvestri or a similar-thinking executive in charge of the Raptors.”

    ummmm, I don’t think so. Teacher’s overseas almost 100B in assets and often sits on the BOD of their major investments. But should they run Serta and Simmons mattresses becuase they sit on the board or sleep well (on their money) at night?

    Of course not. They don’t employ sports savvy employees. They employ market and business valuation professionals. Period.

    It’s one thing to wish for new owners for the Raptors or MLSE. It’s quite another to want them to run the franchise(s) based on the fact that they control (invest) money.

    Also, not sure what percentage of the BOD it takes to carry major decisions, but Teachers don’t have majority of the Board do they? But is it more a case of wanting unity at the Board level than Teachers can impose their will?

    - Gary
  10. 10.

    2011 Raptor coaching candidates :
    Mike Brown- ex-Cav coach

    Brian Shaw- Lakers assistant

    Mike Budenholzer- Spurs assistant

    Elston Turner – Houston assistant

    Charles Oakley -Charlotte assistant

    GM and assistant GM candidates :

    Glen Grunwald
    Larry Brown
    Jack Armstrong
    Rick Pitino
    Jay Triano
    Leo Rautins

    - Anonymous
  11. 11.


    If BC is a solid basketball mind, then why is it that most of his trades since 2007 have not worked out? Why is it that we lost a star under his watch? why haven’t we been to the playoffs in the last three seasons? Which solid GM trades picks? Which solid GM recycles a team over and over with no success. Which Solid GM drafts Out of Europe for your first overall pick in a year where it is said that there is no concensus pick. 7 of the first ten picks were traded to different teams in the 2006 Draft, Colangelo our solid GM stood Pat. Solid isn’t he? Jermaine O Neal played about 40 games in three seasons yet Brian moves a young ligit seven footer to get a player who has played no more than 50 games in three seasons. That’s solid wouldn’t you say TJ. ALL Colangelo has done is prove that he can make trades, which is no special talent in the world of a gm. A solid GM is one that can build a team to get them over the hump. Brian has simply brought his no defense, high octane offense to Toronto and it has simply failed. His philoshy does not win championships and you should know that based on Phoenix being unable to get over the hump. The Brian Colangelo Phoenix teams always lost to defnsive minded teams like the lakers and spurs.

    By the way Glen Grunwald Put this team on the map with the great trade for Vince Carter and the drafting of Bosh. Brian returned us to respectibility in 07, but since then it’s been downhill.
    Brian has done nothing to put a signifigant stamp on this team. Anyone and I mean ANYONE is moveable. A solid GM is defined by his winning and Brian has got and under .500 winning pct.

    - Thomas
  12. 12.

    TJ — what on earth are you talking about? Unless you’re merely antagonizing me (which, is cool with me) — are you sure you aren’t watching Lakers games?

    ‘Cause whatever it is you just said about BC and JT makes zero sense.

    I think you’re pulling my leg, so I won’t elaborate. But, if you’re not, I sincerely hope you enjoy watching a losing team.

    If things turn out the way you’re hoping, there’s gonna be a whole lotta losing for the Raps over the next half decade or so.

    - brento.
  13. 13.

    Wow dude, did you say “great trade of Vince Carter”???


    I seem to remeber Grunwald having to address the fans and apologize for the state of the team.

    BC hasen’t exactly doo-dooed the bed here. I also don’t think he “let” Chris Bosh leave; that was happening anyway. What he did do was get something for nothing, unlike the VC situation, unless Mourning had played or been willing to be moved again.

    It’s unfortunate how the egoes of some players get in teh way of the business side of things. I even a little sad. It’s only a small percentage of the player that are like that, but with today’s media outlets, it’s not hard for it to be perceived that every other player is like that.

    I love this game, but I hate the business side if it all.

    - T.J.
  14. 14.

    I don’t get the “stability” argument made by the raptor media in their unanimous(?!?) defence of BC. This franchise is hardly stable.
    Babcock and BC have made the Raptor brand synonymous with irrelevance. The Raps are a bit of a joke below the border. Bryan caught lightning in a bottle a few years ago, but has been a disappointment since then.
    He’s the captain who has steered this ship onto the rocks, and all he’s doing now is running the bucket brigade.

    - sparky chewbarky
  15. 15.

    As the “Anonymous”author of post #10, let me explain:

    To many NBA players, Toronto is the Siberia of the NBA .
    To overcome this, we need a coach and GM with stature or credibility with the players.

    Jay Triano is a competent coach and Colangelo is no dunce, but this combo needs to be upgraded.
    It’s obvious now when Sam Mitchell was fired, Raptors should have fired Colangelo and kept Sam.

    I have never seen 2 guys get treated by the media with such respect and deference as these two.

    Colangelo has apparently cut off all discussion on The Fan 590 of the Wright incident and it seems like everyone is going along with his order.

    Unfortunately McCown is off this week and everyone else is applying for a permanent job there so no one is asking the tough questions .

    - Chas
  16. 16.


    Let me correct you, I did not say the trade of Vince Carter I certainly said the trade for Vince Carter huge difference dude. The trade for Vince without question put us on the map, Chris bosh put us back on the map when Carther left. From the time BC got here until now notheing he has done has been impactful to be the point where it has given us success year in and year out. Like the Vince, Oakly, Antoinio Dovis, Keon Clark, And JYD aquisitions.

    - Thomas
  17. 17.

    You can’t argue the potential each team aside from this one has had going into the season. What BC has done is build fantastic teams on paper. The actual execution of the team has been nothing short of disgusting. This has underachieved in the last few years and now have a chance to get back on the horse with players that no one is questioning their commitment to the team (except Bargs).

    - T.J.
  18. 18.

    Thomas — who, in the world, is Antoinio Dovis?

    - brento.
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