Worse: Lack of big trades
Most of the roster stuck in the Eastern Conference’s middle ground last year returned. While Toronto was expected to give up some of their more prised assets as part of a more comprehensive roster revamp, they essentially chose to run things back despite their .500 record.
Trading Pascal Siakam would be an ill-advised move due to how unique of a talent he is, but it would at least give the team some clarity on their long-term direction. Anunoby would fetch quite the haul, even with one season left on his deal, but Ujiri has held firm.
The Toronto Raptors decided not to trade.
The Raptors are expecting Barnes to evolve into a star capable of leading a team like Siakam, but they did not get rid of many of the stars that are taking shots away from Barnes. At the very best, Barnes will be the tertiary scorer behind Siakam and Anunoby this season.
The Raptors’ decision to sign Jakob Poeltl shows that they want to be a playoff team next season, yet many of the key players in Toronto’s disappointing season from last year are still on the team. Will Ujiri come to regret a summer of trade inaction in the near future?