Through the first 10 games of the regular season, the Toronto Raptors sit at a .500 record of 5-5. The beginning to the season has had extremes on both ends of the spectrum, with outstanding performances and forgettable losses.
The Raptors defeated the Washington Wizards 111-107 Monday night after trailing by 23 points in the third quarter. In heroic fashion, Pascal Siakam had 39 points (29 of which came in the second half), 11 rebounds and 7 assists to help lead the Raptors to victory in his best game of the year thus far.
The consistency of the teams performances has been lacking to say the least. In one game, they outperformed the Wizards, as they did Monday night, and in another, the Celtics completely destroyed them. Against teams that were considered Championship favourites in the East prior to the season starting, they have a 1-3 record. This begs the question, where should the Raptors go from here?
Buy, Sell or Stay for the Season
It’s too early in the season to say where the Raptors will end off in the standings after 82 games. Although they are trending towards being a borderline play-in team. The issue comes with either wanting to make a push for a deep playoff run or start a rebuild. This topic of conversation comes after deciding to try and make a push last season and falling short. The proceeding events had the Raptors lose veteran guard Fred VanVleet to free agency with nothing in return.
This coming offseason, Pascal Siakam, OG Anunoby, and Gary Trent Jr. are all set to become free agents. Contract extensions are imperative to the future of this team. If both parties are not in agreement, in order to avoid another VanVleet scenario, looking for trade partners to accumulate future draft picks is the minimum to compensate for the impact of quality players leaving. With Scottie Barnes showing true potential and relatively the only consistent player on a nightly basis, the Raptors could also look to surround him with guys that compliment his game.
Being so early in the year, the organization should see how the team fairs closer to the trade deadline. It’s too early to tell whether or not the team will find their stride, but, keeping options open moving forward needs to be the mindset.
The Raptors take on the Milwaukee Bucks at home tonight at 7:30pm EST. Although they did win the first matchup, this will be another tough test for the squad to see how they compete against another top team in the East.