Raptors missing Kyle Anderson was only early free agent failure

Raptors missing Kyle Anderson was only early free agent failure

The Toronto Raptors were in a position to be a bit aggressive in free agency, and Masai Ujiri leaned into his philosophy that emphasizes versatility and defense by retaining Chris Boucher and Thad Young. However, an inability to strike fast in quick succession after these deals prevented Kyle Anderson from coming to Toronto. After getting his start in San […]
Raptors missing Kyle Anderson was only early free agent failure – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Mike Luciano / Raptors HQ

Raptors reportedly still interested in Wizards C Thomas Bryant

Raptors reportedly still interested in Wizards C Thomas Bryant

The Toronto Raptors uncharacteristically made three free agent signings within the first 18 hours of the frenzy. Thad Young and Chris Boucher both resigned, and Otto Porter Jr. left the champion Warriors to join Toronto. Washington Wizards center Thomas Bryant could be next on their list. Bryant would have been in for a huge payday […]
Raptors reportedly still interested in Wizards C Thomas Bryant – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Mike Luciano / Raptors HQ

Otto Porter Jr. signing is bad news for these 2 Toronto Raptors

Otto Porter Jr. signing is bad news for these 2 Toronto Raptors

The Toronto Raptors wouldn’t let free agency go too far before they retained some of their biggest names, choosing to bring back Thad Young and Chris Boucher. Undeterred by the relative lack of open roster spots, Masai Ujiri made it a priority to convince Otto Porter Jr. to make the trip up north. Porter, who […]
Otto Porter Jr. signing is bad news for these 2 Toronto Raptors – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Mike Luciano / Raptors HQ

Raptors sign Otto Porter Jr. after solid season with Warriors

Raptors sign Otto Porter Jr. after solid season with Warriors

The Toronto Raptors managed to hit a home run on the first day of free agency, as they were able to retain Chris Boucher and Thad Young on long-term contracts. Masai Ujiri immediately pivoted his attention to finding bench upgrades, culminating in luting Otto Porter Jr. away from the Golden State Warriors. Porter is signing […]
Raptors sign Otto Porter Jr. after solid season with Warriors – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Mike Luciano / Raptors HQ

Raptors winners and losers as Day 1 of free agency mayhem ends

Raptors winners and losers as Day 1 of free agency mayhem ends

The first day of NBA free agency will always be a madhouse once the clock officially strikes 6:00 p.m. ET, and the Toronto Raptors were not exempt from that wildness. The Raptors at least had their perfect plan ready to go when the gun went off, and Masai Ujiri executed it by bringing back Thad […]
Raptors winners and losers as Day 1 of free agency mayhem ends – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Mike Luciano / Raptors HQ

The challenge with spending on free agent pitching

Free agent spending on pitchers is highly irresponsible.

Every offseason, teams who hope to contend will offer mid-level contracts to starting pitchers. These teams rightly buy into the notion that you can never have enough starting pitching. However, they’re going about it the wrong way.
As this tweet from Chris Black (absolute must-follow on Twitter if you don’t already) suggests, teams are incredibly hard pressed to sign a pitcher to a good contract when they do it in free agency…

By my count, 9 starters signed for between $10-16m avg this off-season, here’s how they’re doing.
Alternate text: Be wary of treading into this part of the free agent market.
Also shoutout to the rubes who were hating on me for saying passing on Matz was a good move. pic.twitter.com/dSThnFJds0
— Chris Black (@DownToBlack) June 30, 2022

NOTE: This post was written before Kikuchi’s start on Thursday. 
In this offseason ALONE, teams spent a grand total of about $317 million on pitchers who got mid-level AAVs this offseason, and they’ve gotten a 5.11 ERA return on that investment.
By comparison, all rookie arms have posted a combined 5.15 ERA in games they’ve started thus far this season. Think about that for a second. 82 rookies have started at least one game this season, the vast majority of which are making the league minimum of $700K. Assuming all of them are making league minimum (which isn’t true, plenty are on minor league contracts, but for argument’s sake), that means that the rookies are getting paid a combined $57M in 2022. So, rookies are making about 5.5 times less than the above pitchers, while posting equivalent results. Who are these rookies?
One is Connor Overton, who spent a majority of his 2021 in the Blue Jays organization, and has put up a solid 1.82 …

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Author: Tate Kispech / Blue Jays Nation

Raptors rumors: Thad Young likely back, Mo Bamba has interest

Raptors rumors: Thad Young likely back, Mo Bamba has interest

The Toronto Raptors can finally start to kick free agency into high gear now that the NBA Draft is officially in the past. Be it trying to retain veterans like Chris Boucher and Thad Young or trying to go outside the organization to find standouts like Mo Bamba, Masai Ujiri will have his hands full. […]
Raptors rumors: Thad Young likely back, Mo Bamba has interest – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Mike Luciano / Raptors HQ

Risk vs. Reward: The Ville Husso question

This year’s crop of pending free agents features roughly five goaltenders who have managed a starter’s workload in recent years. The youngest and perhaps most intriguing option is St. Louis’ Ville Husso.
NHL general managers have a notoriously short memory when signing free agents. This seems especially true when looking at goaltending. Look at Sergei Bobrovsky for instance. His career has alternated between near-Vezina quality play and borderline unplayable on almost a yearly basis, and Florida still saw fit to sign him long-term at $10 million per year.
Keeping that in mind, (and what was written in my piece yesterday about goaltending being random and voodoo,) Ville Husso’s next contract brings with it the potential for huge risk or great reward, probably both. Is that something the Toronto Maple Leafs can really consider?
Let’s look at Husso’s career so far. 64 total NHL games (57 in the regular season, 7 playoffs) a career average .910 save percentage. Breaking that down a little further, Husso played 17 games in the 2021 shortened season and posted nine wins with a sub-.900 save percentage.
This past season is generally regarded as his emergence. He played 40 games and won 25, the most of any goaltender for the Blues this year, he essentially usurped Jordan Binnington as the starter, put up a 9.19 save percentage that placed him among the league’s best, and …

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Author: Dylan Murphy / The Leafs Nation

Exploring Frank Seravalli’s trade targets list and who might fit with the Maple Leafs

With the NHL draft and free agency inching closer and closer, does a trade from the Maple Leafs become more imminent?
On Thursday, DailyFaceoff’s Frank Seravalli released his Trade Targets list which named 25 players who could be on the block heading into the summer.
One of the names on the list that was a little surprising was Justin Holl. The 30-year-old still has one year remaining on his deal and would fit into their plans on the right side at the moment. That is, unless Toronto plans on doing something else.
Maple Leafs’ Justin Holl lands on Daily Faceoff’s off-season trade board
What could this mean for the Maple Leafs’ defence heading into the 2022-23 season? Well, I think I have an idea.
Ethan Bear
There are a few names that stick out in Seravalli’s list, but one of the more fascinating names is Ethan Bear at #23. The 24-year-old is going to be an RFA this summer with not much of a track record to show for.
While he played 58 games with the Carolina Hurricanes and showed decent underlying numbers, Bear missed out on the playoffs due to an injury. The Maple Leafs could trade for the 24-year-old and qualify him at $2.4 million or see if Carolina lets him walk and then pounce on July 13th.
Either way, he might be a good bet.
Bear, in his 58 games this season, finished with a 56.59 CF%, a 50.00 GF%, a 55.51 xGF%, and a 55.49 HDCF%, all at five-on-five. He’d be an interesting piece that Toronto could experiment with on the third pairing alongside one of their veterans.
John Gibson
Another fascinating player on the li …

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Author: Nick Barden / The Leafs Nation

Three interesting targets and four Leafs who made Frank Seravalli’s top 50 UFA list

The Leafs are heading into free agency where they aren’t going to lose anyone who can’t be replaced and don’t have the cap space to chase down the most significant players who are hitting the market. The cap space situation can change and through buyouts and RFA going unqualified the list can improve, but for the most part, this isn’t a list that inspires a drastic overhaul of the Leafs personnel.
Over at Daily Faceoff, Frank Seravalli has compiled a list of the 50 best players presently available. The Leafs players are decidedly in the middle of the pack, with Ilya Mikheyev coming in at 20th overall, Jack Campbell at 25th, Ilya Lyubushkin at 39th, and Colin Blackwell at 41st. Of this group, there isn’t much pressure to bring any of them back, and the only one that there is an absolute need to replace is, of course, Jack Campbell. These moves represent just over $5M coming off the payroll for the Leafs, and it kinda hurts that bargain players are exiting as the little room the Leafs have to work with prevents them from pursuing some of the other interesting names on this list that could be strong fits for the Leafs.
Target 1: Nino Niederreiter
Ranked #16 on the list, Niederreiter has been a somewhat inconsistent power forward that could help the Leaf …

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Author: Jon Steitzer / The Leafs Nation