HoopsHype Masai Ujiri rumors

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February 20, 2015 Updates
February 19, 2015 Updates
February 17, 2015 Updates

I expect the Toronto Raptors to make a hard push for a power forward who can score more easily than the Amir Johnson/Patrick Patterson combo, but it would surprise me if Masai Ujiri can pull something off. But also keep this in mind about Ujiri: He has been trying to get his hands on Nicolas Batum for ages, and he will give up just about anything to land the French forward. SheridanHoops

February 15, 2015 Updates

The campers, ages 16-18 and coming from Africa, the Americas, Asia and Europe, are training with select NBA and FIBA players and coaches including Danilo Gallinari (Denver Nuggets; Italy; BWB Europe 2003), Gorgui Dieng (Minnesota Timberwolves; Senegal; BWB Africa 2009), Steven Adams (Oklahoma City Thunder; New Zealand), and Tiago Splitter (San Antonio Spurs; Brazil). “We watch [the players],” Toronto Raptors GM Masai Ujiri said Saturday morning. “How many times you get to see kids like this? We continue to watch them develop and you see them in other tournaments. But if you can see them in places like this where you can see them do skill development, it’s really good for scouts.” ZagsBlog.com

February 6, 2015 Updates
February 5, 2015 Updates

The Raptors are one of several teams sniffing around for a roster upgrade, specifically at the power forward spot. A few names continue to surface around league sources when talking about Toronto, the biggest being Indiana’s David West, the next is Chicago’s Taj Gibson, then Denver’s Kenneth Faried and then there is a long list of B and C tier names that Toronto might consider at the deadline if all else fails. The Raptors are not offering much and that’s likely why there has been so little traction. There has been a long running joke among hoop heads that when Raptors president Masai Ujiri calls, you should say you are busy as you are about to get fleeced. Basketball Insiders

January 6, 2015 Updates

“You read about it and hear about the East, the East, the East,” Ujiri says. “And you have to think about it sometimes. Is this a rare time? Is this period — the next year or two — something we have to take advantage of?” Would the Raptors deal their first-rounder in exchange for someone who could help today — an extra dose of rim protection for a bottom-10 defense, a hybrid forward, or some scoring juice to slot ahead of Amir Johnson at power forward? “That’s a question I can’t answer,” Ujiri says. “It depends on what’s there. But I won’t make decisions that are going to shorten our growth and help us only this year.” Grantland

Bringing back just one would leave the Raptors with something between $8 million and $10 million in space — not enough to attract a star with the league swimming in cap room and handing out fat deals in anticipation of new TV revenue. Ujiri treasures familiarity, but his track record suggests he’s unafraid to shake things up. “We favor building with our own players because we’ve gotten to know them,” Ujiri says. “And then adding accordingly.” Grantland

“We made the Rudy trade to see where we would be,” says Masai Ujiri, the team’s GM. “Are we gonna break it all down? That’s where luck comes in. We all walk around thinking we’re geniuses, but in this business, you need that Lady Luck.” Ujiri never imagined then that the Raptors would be battling for the East’s no. 1 seed midway through this season. “I don’t think anybody saw it coming.” Lowry agrees. “Not in my wildest dreams,” he says. Grantland

December 20, 2014 Updates
December 19, 2014 Updates

Masai Ujiri is our audience's pick for the most influential figure in Canadian sports in 2014. The Toronto Raptors general manager won the final matchup against Olympic speed skater Gilmore Junio, earning 51 per cent of votes. Ujiri emerged from a list of eight finalists that were pitted against each other in a series of head-to-head matchups over the last few weeks, with the highest vote-getter advancing to the next round. cbc.ca

December 18, 2014 Updates

A player that increasingly intrigues Raptors management is Memphis centre Marc Gasol. The Spaniard is a free agent this summer. The greatest lack on the Raptors roster is a truly dominant big man. Gasol is a Jungian figure that features prominently in GM Masai Ujiri’s bedside dream diary. Gasol, 29, has good fiduciary and competitive reasons to stay where he is, but it’s still the Western Conference. He might be great for five or six more years and never make it past the second round of the playoffs. Maybe Gasol can be convinced that he should take a free-agent discount in order to ride roughshod over the Eastern Conference for the foreseeable future. Toronto Globe & Mail

December 15, 2014 Updates

A player that increasingly intrigues Raptors management is Memphis centre Marc Gasol. The Spaniard is a free agent this summer. The greatest lack on the Raptors roster is a truly dominant big man. Gasol is a Jungian figure that features prominently in GM Masai Ujiri’s bedside dream diary. Toronto Globe & Mail

December 9, 2014 Updates

And in Ujiri the Raptors have a general manager who isn’t in a rush to follow up his last big move with anything more than a steady approach. The future will reveal itself when its ready. “This is the time to let it sit and play itself out,” Ujiri said. “It’s not the time to play poker, not now.” SportsNet

There is plenty of flexibility. Ujiri has six players on expiring contracts worth a total of $30 million. Of those only Amir Johnson and Lou Williams could be defined as core assets. But Ujiri is unhurried. “We’ve got young players,” he said. “When you take a job, you have to assess the guys you need and the guys you don’t. Some of that we did right away and some of it we waited. “But now we’re at the stage where we let the players grow. You need to let your players grow. We will continue to look at our team, but the key is we have young players and they players will hopefully continue to get better and continue to grow.” SportsNet

November 23, 2014 Updates

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