Raptors fire Rob Babcock
The mismanagement of the NBA franchise continues here in Toronto.
As first reported by The Globe and Mail, the Raptors have fired general manager Rob Babcock this afternoon. In only the second year of his contract, Babcock had no experience when he was hired and has seemingly been on the hot seat since Day 1.
Toronto might not be known as a 'basketball town,' but it certainly is a huge media centre where every sickly pulse from the city's professional teams is documented ad nauseam. (That's a belaboured way of saying: 'It's not easy to suck here.')
This season, however, Babcock has made a number of admirable personnel decisions, including picking up guard Mike James in an early season trade for Rafer Alston. Babcock also did well at the draft table in his second go around — although it was hardly possible to do worse than selecting Brazilian oaf Rafael Araujo with the No. 8 pick in the 2004 draft.
The timing of this move is abysmal. There's one month to go until the trade deadline, not nearly enough time for owner MLSE to appoint their candidate and allow that person the time to properly retool the team. With only an interim GM, presumably for the rest of the season, the Raptors are also stuck with hapless head coach Sam Mitchell until the manager's seat is refilled.
Living in B.C. at the time, I had a bird's eye view of the only NBA franchise in recent memory managed as poorly as the Raptors have been the last two years: the Vancouver Grizzlies. And we all know how that ended.