3 reasons Raptors letting Fred VanVleet walk was still the correct move

The Raptors are moving ahead without VanVleet

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Los Angeles Lakers v Houston Rockets / Carmen Mandato/GettyImages
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3. Scottie Barnes wouldn't be empowered

The Raptors know that Barnes will be the sole force that determines how well the rebuild goes for Toronto. Every move they have made and will make in the next few months will be viewed through the prism of making sure that he takes all the steps forward he needs in order to become the team's marquee player.

Signs that VanVleet and Barnes weren't meshing started to pop up last season. On top of the fact that Barnes and Pascal Siakam didn't always have the best distribution of offensive responsibility, watching VanVleet slowly run the offense and dominate the ball made life even tougher for Scottie.

The Toronto Raptors needed to break up Scottie Barnes and Fred VanVleet

Barnes needs the ball in his hands to play his best, and VanVleet is not at a point in his career where he is going to secede touches to the All-Star snub out of the goodness of his heart or to expedite Toronto's youth-centered retooling. Imagine this year's version of Scottie as a third option behind VanVleet and Siakam again.

The Raptors are living and dying with Barnes at the center, as losing two former All-Stars and an All-Defensive forward in the span of eight months shows how confident they were in him. Tying ankle weights to him in the form of VanVleet's occasionally irritating style may not have been the wisest move.

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