Toronto Raptors: Top-five power-forwards in franchise history

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Toronto Raptors
Toronto Raptors – Patrick Patterson (Photo by David Liam Kyle/NBAE via Getty Images) /

5 Patrick Patterson:

Patrick Patterson was brought to the Toronto Raptors during the 2013-14 season as part of the trade deal that sent Rudy Gay to the Sacramento Kings.  Gay had shown star potential during his time in Memphis, but despite being very close friends with Kyle Lowry, didn’t fit in well with his Raptor teammates.

In what was his first big move as a Raptors executive, Masai Ujiri decided to ship Gay to Sacramento for a group of NBA journeymen; Patrick Patterson, Chuck Hayes, John Salmons, and Greivis Vasquez.  Expectations were low for the remainder of the season, and many predicted that the Raptors would tank.

They didn’t.

Thanks to the new additions – mainly Patterson and Vasquez – the team used their depth and chemistry to win the Atlantic Division and make the playoffs as a #3 seed.  From that point on (though, perhaps not always the starter), Patrick Patterson was the best power-forward for the new-look Raptors.  Patterson’s unique skillset was a luxury for his teammates.

He has the size of traditional big-men (6’9, 230lbs), but also the skills demanded of stretch forwards in today’s NBA.

He is a proficient shooter from mid and three-point range, an adept passer who could set screens and move without the ball, and he was an excellent teammate and player within Dwane Casey’s offensive and defensive systems.

Not as high-profile as Lowry or DeRozan, Patterson isn’t talked about as one of the pioneers of the Raptors’ post-Bosh era success.  However, if you examine his 4 seasons with the Raptors that featured 4 straight playoff appearances as a top-4 seed, and an Eastern Conference final, it’s now clear that he was.