Core or Ignore: Which Toronto Raptors are a part of the long-term plan?

Toronto Raptors v Orlando Magic
Toronto Raptors v Orlando Magic / Rich Storry/GettyImages
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Ignore: Bruce Brown

This should come as no surprise to any Raptors fan who has paid remotely any attention to the team over the last few months, but this front office should not consider Bruce Brown a part of their long-term core.

Since coming to Toronto from the Pacers in the Pascal Siakam trade, the 27 year-old has been nothing short of disappointing. It's hard to blame Brown for this, as he - like most of us - probably expected to wind up on a more competitive team by the time the trade deadline had passed. However, Masai and the front office didn't like the offers they received and decided to retain his contract until the summer.

Once regarded as a first-round worthy trade asset, Brown's value has dropped significantly due to his string of inconsistent performances in his time with Toronto. Still, the Raptors have no incentive to keep him on the team, and will likely have to cut their losses and live with the sunk cost of keeping him past the deadline.

Core: Immanuel Quickley

It's hard to imagine a world in which the Raptors do not extend Quickley. In his first three months with the Raptors, the 6'2 combo guard has provided an elite mix of shooting and playmaking that Raptors fans haven't seen since the departure of Kyle Lowry.

At 24 years old, Quickley perfectly fits the timeline that the Raptors have established since trading their long-time stars OG Anunoby and Pascal Siakam. His increased opportunity as the primary ball-handler has resulted in massive strides as a distributor. Since joining the Raptors, Quickley's assists per game have skyrocketed from 2.5 to 6.6.

Quickley will likely demand a contract of around $25 million per year, but considering the stellar chemistry he has shown with Scottie Barnes and RJ Barrett, extending Quickley would be the first step in re-establishing the winning culture that has been synonymous with the Raptors for the past decade.