A Done Deal

Well there you have it folks, the Vince Carter era in Toronto is over. Earlier today, the Raptors sent the man formerly known as Air Canada to the New Jersey Nets for Alonzo Mourning, Eric "The Prince of Newark" Williams, and Aaron Williams. The trade itself isn't shocking, but the destination is a little bit. New York, Portland, and New Orleans were mentioned steadily overly the last few weeks, but New Jersey wasn't really mentioned until pretty much today.

As it's still so fresh, I'm not sure what I think of this trade. I'm sure most people in Toronto will be down on the deal. They didn't get the big name player everyone was expecting in return for Vince. There's no Ray Allen, Jamal Crawford, or Jamal Magloire coming to Toronto in exchange for our "franchise" player (perhaps "former franchise" player as Bosh might have assumed that title even before Vince was traded). But I'm going to take the optimistic view of the trade at this point. I've seen plenty of Eric Williams and his enormous teeth going back to his days with the Celtics when Acker was loving him. In all honesty, the Raps starting lineup with at least remain at the same level or perhaps improve with Williams at small forward. The guy scores 12 points a game, and he plays tough defence. It's become pretty clear that Vince was dogging it for most of this season, playing less defence than ever and shooting more jumpers to save his fragile body for his future employer.

I've always kind of liked Aaron Williams as well. He's a big strong guy and can probably help out in the post and with rebounding. These guys fit what Sam Mitchell is trying to do with the Raptors, turn them into a tougher, defence centered squad. The other thing about these guys is that they earn fairly modest money. I haven't mentioned Mourning yet because no one knows what his deal is. Some are saying he may not ever play for the Raptors. So let's see what happens. If he plays, he can help. He still offers 10 points, 7 boards, and 2.5 blocks a game while being a legit Eastern Conference centre. If he doesn't play, they might be able to trade him or buy out his deal. The Raps are also due 2 first round draft picks from this deal over the next 2 years, and that does make the deal more attractive.

So that's it, the Vince Carter saga is finally over. I'm certainly glad for that, regardless of how the trade plays out. It's been annoying hearing everyone blame Vince for everything that's gone wrong with the Raptors. His injuries and frustrating, indifferent attitude the last couple years certainly hurt the Raps, but he didn't cause all the problems. Vince Carter hasn't left Toronto on the best of terms, but he put basketball on the map in Toronto. When I got here the Raptors were strictly an afterthought, but they're at least on the radar here now.

Vince is gone, so let's wish him all the best with Jason Kidd and the Nets. Or let's just rid him good riddance, whatever floats your boat.

@ 6:44 AM, mario kicked the following game:

Hopefully the Carter trade will now start an exodus of players from Toronto, i.e. Rose and Marshall to the Heat


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