The Toronto Raptors may not be the biggest free agent destination in the world, but Nick Nurse and Masai Ujiri have built one of the league’s most consistent and respected franchises. The Raptors have been consistent winners for a decade, with a championship ring in their possession.
While a roster led by Rookie of the Year Scottie Barnes and Pascal Siakam is impressive enough, but what Toronto has done off the court has been just as show-stopping. The league remains in awe of the fanbase this team has compiled and the leadership of this organization.
A survey of NBA GMs across the league showed that the Raptors got the most votes for best home-court advantage with 21% of the vote. Toronto beat out the Denver Nuggets and Boston Celtics in second place at 17%, while the Golden State Warriors came in fourth place at 14%.
GMs were also very complimentary of Nurse, as Toronto’s leader got the second-most votes for the “who makes the best in-game adjustments?” hypothetical. He was tied for third in the best offensive and defensive schemes category. Nurse assistant Adrian Griffin got the third-most votes for top assistant coach.
Toronto Raptors fans, Nick Nurse, earn high marks from NBA GMs.
Toronto not only has the benefit of a raucous fanbase that shakes the refers at Scotiabank Arena regularly, but their status as the league’s lone Canadian team makes it difficult for opposing teams to cross the border and dominate in the same way they would on their home floor.
Nurse’s offensive vote was slightly puzzling, given how last year went, but no one can challenge the fact that he is one of the best defensive schemers this game has seen in the previous few decades. No team in the league might be more annoying to play against on a nightly basis than Toronto.
Nurse’s assistants have been highly regarded as excellent coaches in their own right. Not only is Griffin, who interviewed for the vacant Jazz and Lakers head coaching jobs this offseason, getting closer to his first head coaching gig, but Chris Finch has proven his quality with the Timberwolves.
If only they were as complimentary of the product Toronto puts on the court.
The Raptors may not be the glitziest team ever, nor are they regarded as a championship lock this season despite all of their improvements. However, that doesn’t change the fact that this organization is viewed by those in the know as an example to emulate.