In July 11, 2012, Lowry moved to the Toronto Raptors in exchange for Gary Forbes and a future first round pick. Lowry averaged over 23 points and seven assists through the first three games of the season. but was injured during the team’s fourth game. Upon his return he came off the bench behind José Calderón, but regained the starting position when Calderón was traded in a three-team deal in January 2013. Despite the trade, which was meant to help the struggling Raptors return to relevance, the team finished the season with a 34-48 record, missing the playoffs.
The Raptors started the next season with a 6-12 record. until Gay was traded to the Sacramento Kings. Lowry’s name was linked to several teams, most frequently the New York Knicks, in trade rumours, but the Knicks were reportedly unwilling to send a first round pick to Toronto in exchange for Lowry. The post-Gay Raptors quickly emerged as one of the best teams in the Eastern Conference, and many cited Lowry’s strong play and leadership as a significant factor in their success. The team finished the season with a franchise-best 48-34 record, third in the Eastern Conference and first in the Atlantic Division for the second time in franchise history. Continue reading Player Profile: Kyle Lowry→
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The New Orleans professional basketball scene has been bad in recent years, but they weren’t always hard to watch. Since 2002, when the NBA decided to have the Hornets name in New Orleans, the franchise has made the playoffs 5 out its 12 year running. The New Orleans Hornets enjoyed their most successful years under point guard and natural leader, Chris Paul.
Following a pathetic year under coach Byron Scott and a record of 18-64, the New Orleans Hornets picked the Wake Forest’s Chris Paul with the 4th overall pick. He led the Hornets to a majorly improved record of 38-44. Not much changed in his second year. In the 2007 season, the team only raised its previous record by one win and finishing 39-43.
The New Orleans organization looked to make massive additions around their two pieces in Chris Paul and grimy power forward David West. They accomplished that. The Hornets added 7 foot center Tyson Chandler and sharp-shooting Peja Stojakovic. This group of players finished the season at the top of the NBA Southwest Division with a 56-26 record. New Orleans won impressively in the first round of the playoffs beating the Dallas Mavericks 4-1, but lost in a close series against the San Antonio Spurs 4-3. Continue reading Has New Orleans Found Their New Hope?→