For the first time in a few years, I am pumped up about the upcoming Raptors' season.
Today isn't just the start of the team's 11th season. I would argue that this is also the official start to "Chapter Three" of the Toronto Raptors' history. Chapter One started when Toronto was awarded the franchise and goes until 1998. Chapter Two goes from when the Maple Leafs buy the Raptors and ends earlier this year when Bryan Collangello, is hired as the team's new General Manager.
So what will Chapter Three have in store? Well, anything can happen. However, you can't help but feel optimistic about the Raptors.
Toronto finally has a braintrust that actually knows what they're doing. Collangello has brought in some top talent from overseas such as Anthony Parker, Jose Calderon and Andrea Bargnani. There's also TJ Ford and Kris Humphries who came over in offseason trades. And of course, there are returning players like Chris Bosh and Morris Peterson.
The Raptors won't blow everyone out of the water; however, I feel there is going to be a major improvement from last year's 27-55 record. When it comes to the playoffs, I think there's a good chance they can make it. My prediction is that they will finish somewhere between 7th and 10th place in the NBA Eastern Conference.
One thing is for sure, this team is going to develop into a pretty good ball club.