Sunday , Dec , 21 , 2008 Oly Sandor

Going extinct: Why Chris Bosh and Toronto Raptors are struggling

The bench is thin. Two years back, the Raptors were one of the NBA’s deepest team. The players unconditionally accepted their roles, giving the coaching staff the ability to go twelve deep. Something has changed. Useful reserves like Carlos Delfino and Derrick Martin are gone, while Joey Graham and Kris Humphries have struggled with consistency …

Going extinct: Why Chris Bosh and Toronto Raptors are strugglingLike the global economy, the Toronto Raptors have serious problems with no immediate solution.

Home fans are booing in disgust. On the road, they lost to lowly Oklahoma City. The coach, Sam Mitchell, has already been fired. Andrea Bargnani is officially a bust, at least in Toronto. And trade rumours are swirling around Lake Ontario like another toxic pollutant.

Worst of all, reports have Chris Bosh leaving ‘The Big Smoke’ in July 2010 when he can exercise an opt-out clause in his contract and become an unrestricted free agent.

Can an on-court stimulus save the Raptors’ season?

They lack a second-star. Right now, franchise superstar Bosh has no running mate to alleviate pressure. The lanky left-hander must drop ridiculous numbers for Toronto to have a realistic chance at winning.

Unfortunately, management failed to find their Batman (Bosh) a Robin. T.J. Ford didn’t work out. His replacement Jose Calderon is having an up-and-down season due to injury. And Jermaine O’Neal, while useful, is no longer an All-Star.

The current situation is unsustainable. Front office suit Bryan Colangelo can continue hoping Bargnani, Calderon, O’Neal and Anthony Parker fill the second scorer role by committee or he can bring in outside talent via trade.

They need an identity. Colangelo, after assuming the GM post in 2005, wanted a running team, while former sideline boss Mitchell wanted a defensive, blue-collar team. And Jay Triano, the interim coach, is left with something that doesn’t work in the middle.

The bench is thin. Two years back, the Raptors were one of the NBA’s deepest team. The players unconditionally accepted their roles, giving the coaching staff the ability to go twelve deep. Something has changed. Useful reserves like Carlos Delfino and Derrick Martin are gone, while Joey Graham and Kris Humphries have struggled with consistency.

Yesterday, Toronto lost their second game in two nights against a strong San Antonio side. They must make immediate changes or their season will be lost.

What must the Raptors do to save their season? Get at us with the thoughts and come back to HoopsVibe the Blog for further NBA tidbits. Photo courtesy of Daniele Sartori.