Just in case they didn’t have enough European flavour on their roster yet, the Raptors felt compelled to do something about it late this evening. It would appear that the Toronto Raptors have acquired Italian sharp shooter Marco Belinelli from the Golden State Warriors for “we barely knew ya” Devean George. Perhaps Belinelli can finally rid the franchise of the memory of the 1st Raptor signee Vincenzo Espositoand become a hero in little Italy, something Esposito could never do (Nice acquisition Isaiah).
Perhaps the Raptors choice of loading up on Europeans is the ying to the yang of their MLSE counterpart the Toronto Maple Leafs. Brian Burke has spent all off season unloading anything with a non North American passport and his Basketball counter part Bryan Colangelo has been doing the direct opposite.
Nonetheless I like this move on the surface for both basketball reasons and non basketball reasons. I’ve been fond of Belinelli’s game and actually thought the Raptors might try to acquire him during a draft day trade in 2007. Hopefully his game will blossom under the guise of the Euro-Raptors style. If anything at least Andrea Bargnani now has an Italian running mate to take the pressure off of him from all the Vito’s in Woodbridge who call in the Fan590 .
- For a better perspective on this move and what it means to the Raptors I offer you a take from Arsenalist (no relation, you can probably tell by the fact that he’s much more engaging and a better writer than I) from Raptors Republic who breaks the transaction down much better than I. Read his post here.