Don't Cry For Me Roko Ukic ..You Were Suppose To Be Much Better

If you have never seen the movie Evita with Madonna the humour of the the title may be lost on you. But none the less it seems Bryan Colangelo despises summer vacation of any kind. Still hard at work attempting to make his Raptors better. The deal that is being reported

To The Bucks:

- Rights to SG/SF Carlos Delfino
- PG Roko Ukic

To Toronto

- Forward Amir Johnson
- Guard/Forward Sonny Weems

When you consider the Raptors are doing basically a sign and trade for Carlos Delfino, was not like he was ever on the roster. This basically becomes a trade about Roko Ukic.It seems pretty clear that the Raptors felt much like myself that Roko had not developed at a rate they were happy with. That is why they went out and signed Jarrett Jack and it is why they considered drafting Jonny Flynn. So it makes sense to see Roko on the move. I was asked on the first DNB Radio if I saw any trade possibilities for Roko or Marcus Banks. My response was that I saw it as unlikely. However Bryan Colangelo was smart enough to package Roko with an asset he had, but had no intention of using in Delfino. Coming back the other way is Amir Johnson who was on of those young players on that Pistons bench that was suppose to be the the future. He is someone who perhaps could bring something to the table. Weems I will admit I am not all that familiar with but he is 6 foot 6 and will be a depth player at both shooting guard and more importantly small forward. He comes from a solid college program in Arkansas. Basically these are 2 guys that may be something or may not. This is not a trade that is going to shake the foundation of what has already been constructed by Bryan Colangelo. The deal speaks to me more about where Roko was at than anything else.

This also would put an end to any speculation of a return of Pops Mensah-Bonsu or Joey Graham until further notice. There is an outside chance that Marcus Banks could be bought out to open up a roster spot but that would seem unlikely at least not to just bring back Joey or Pops.

I heard someone on the Fan 590 today just in a full rage about the fact the Raptors would trade Roko and give up on him so soon? He used the example of Calderon. See that is your problem right there. What Jose Calderon did from year 1 to year 2 is the exception and not the rule. I watched Roko play in all 5 summer league games and he really had not shown any huge signs of growth or development. It was basically the same Roko. He also brought up his numbers with Croatia being improved. What people do in FIBA Basketball does not translate over to the NBA necessarily. Steve Nash did take his time with team Canada and used it as a spring board to his NBA Career but again that is rare and not the rule.

What both Nash and Calderon did was special and truly Roko beyond the odd flash of brilliance has never been that "special". This was a guy drafted by Rob Babcock. He was a projected first round pick that fell into the 40's. These things do not happen by accident. Rob Babcock does not have the best draft record in the world in his brief and destructive term as Raptors GM. Charlie V I would class as his only true solid draft choice. The rest have been variations of the word "bust". Could light come on one day and Roko will become a good point guard in this league? You can never say no for certain but the odds are highly in favour of the house on this one. Doug Smith on the same fan 590 said he doubts Roko is better than a 3rd string point guard for the Bucks. Who have according to Raptorblog's Scott Carefoot (and I don't disagree) the worst starting point guard in the league in Luke Ridnour. How can you really question Colangelo shifting things around and adding some depth at small forward and perhaps power forward in the case of Johnson.

So please don't shed any tears for Roko Ukic, or for Pops or Joey for that matter. This off season was about erasing all that went wrong last season and the addition of now (if this deal does get finalized) 9 new faces that mission has been more than accomplished. It also gives Jay Triano a fresh canvas to paint on in his first year as head coach full time. This was something that had to be done for Jay to have a good chance at being successful in my view. The only question I have is for Bryan Colangelo...are we done now? I doubt he will have time to answer as he is likely on the phones trying to trade Marcus Banks for someone. If Bryan can do that he truly will have nothing left to do but sit and wait for the season to begin.


  1. I actually would not buy out Banks. I think there might be some offers for him next off-season with teams trying to do a salary dump.

  2. There is actually some thought the Raptors are hanging on to him for that eventuality. Thanks for the taking time to leave a comment.

  3. What would you now say is the depth chart for the raptors at the 3?

  4. And for that matter, would you say that there is one particular position in which the Raptors could still use a boost? I am a bit worried about our back up centres myself.

  5. Still think the 3 spot is a bit lacking. But this trade at least provides bodies for that. Center is fine in my view. You have Bargnani, Rasho and O'Bryant. Even Evans is capable of guarding some 5's in a pinch.

    The 3 spot has improved in terms of adding Hedo but from a depth perspective it remains up in the air. If Demar DeRozan can be capable as both a 2 and 3 I will feel much better about this.

    A small line-up of Calderon, Jack and DeRozan playing with Hedo and Bosh would be interesting. I will be watching the pre-season with great interest to see what combinations Triano decides to experiment with.

  6. i kinda agree and disagree with you because well one yes Ruko hasnt grown much at a pace that we all would like but he does have potential i liked what i saw so the trade for him to the bucks is good at least he is still in the NBA. Now Amir vs Pops I lean towards Pops why well one the guy came out of the blue if you saw the Spurs vs Cavs then you would know they wanted to keep him but opted for Drew which I think was dumb but whatever back to the point which is they are the same so why give up on one guy but go out and get another guy that plays the same i mean yeah i guess Amir is a better blocker has a shot has potential but is he gonna be nasty in a game i mean get hyped up yeah we got reggie but why not have two guys that will give you energy off the bench heck pops reminded me of the days when JYD was back in the day have we goten better yes but do we have an image that says hey you cant push us around or the get off me mentality that this team needs. Well amir welcome to the team prove us wrong show me your nasty and i will believe watched you in the D like yah but still needs work unlike Pops who went over seas came back and said your gonna know who the heck i am NBA so thats my say hope he gets picked up soon and then come back bite this team in.....