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Grading Masai Ujiri's Time With the Raptors (so far)

August 18, 2018

   Masai Ujiri has spent the better part of the 2010's with the Toronto Raptors as either the General Manager, Team President, or both. During that time, the Raptors have seen something that those of us who experienced the "Dark Age" in Raptors history might not have truly expected to see as soon as we did.

   From the 2009-'10 season until the 2013-'14 season, it was becoming increasingly difficult to be a Raptors fan. Star power forward and franchise player Chris Bosh left the Raptors for South Beach, home of the Heat, and the Raptors were left with a young core including: Demar Derozan, Jonas Valanciunas, Amir Johnson, and essentially nobody else of great importance to the future of the team. When Ujiri took over as GM in the summer of 2013, the Raptors had easily on of the best seasons in the franchise's history. Now, to be fair, Ujiri brought nothing other than a culture change to the 6ix in that first season after taking over, he eventually made draft picks and free agency signings that have paid off spectacularly. (See: Norman Powell's performance in the 2016 playoffs, OG Anunoby's performance in the entire 2017-'18 season, and Delon Wright, Fred Vanvleet, Pascal Siakam, and Jakob Poeltl's performance throughout the 2017-'18 season.)

 

   Finally, after jumping at the chance to put his stamp on the franchise in July 2018 in a move that both impressed and upset fans all over the league, when he made arguably the move of the summer, trading a package that included Demar Derozan to San Antonio for Kawhi Leonard and Danny Green, Ujiri has become a spot of controversy in the city. Either you hate him for not giving Demar a chance in the Lebron-less East, or you love him for getting an MVP-calibre player in Kawhi.

   If not for the two huge mistakes named Bruno Caboclo and Demarre Carroll, Masai Ujiri would be getting an A+ for the job he's done in Toronto so far. However, considering those mistakes I feel as though a slight penalty is in order. 

 

Grade: A-

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