The Toronto Raptors is a professional basketball team in the NBA.
They are based in Toronto, Ontario in Canada. They are member of the Atlantic Division of the Eastern Conference. They were part of the expansion of NBA into Canada, along with them were the Vancouver Grizzler who is now known as Memphis Grizzlies. Their home arena was SkyDome until they move it to the Air Canada Centre in 1999. As the Grizzlies had transferred in Memphis, the Raptors became the only NBA team based in Canada.Franchise History
The Toronto Raptors were organized in 1993 as the NBA awarded its 28th franchise to a group of businessmen led by John Bitove. The Raptors played their first official game against the New Jersey Nets. It was Alvin Robertson who scored the first points for the franchise.
They won over the Nets as Damon Stoudamire had 10 points and 10 assists. They would finish the season with an expected losing record 21-61 from an expansion team. Their rookie guard, Stoudamire, won the Rookie of the Year award averaging, 19 points and 9.3 assists per game.
The following season, 1996-97 NBA season, was an improvement for the team as they had a nine-game improvement from their inaugural season. In the 1996 draft, they selected Marcus Camby as the second overall pick.
As the team started the 1997-98 season, they had numerous injuries that resulted the team into a 17 game losing streak. Stoudamire was traded to the Portland Trail Blazers along with other two, Walt Williams and Carlos Rogers in exchange for Kenny Anderson, Alvin Williams, Gary Trent, two first round draft choices and one second round draft choice and cash. Anderson was immediately traded to the Celtics along with Zan Tabak and Popeye Jones for Chauncey Billups, Dee Brown, Roy Rogers and John Thomas.
They had five rookies, including the soon to be superstar Tracy McGrady. Because of a very young team and lack of experience, the team finished with 16-66 season.
In the 1988 draft, the team’s 4th overall pick Antawn Jamison was traded to the Golden State Warriors’ Vince Carter who is the 5th overall pick.
They also traded Marcus Camby for Charles Oakley, to bring and provide the team with experience. With them, were Doug Christie and Kevin Willis, Christie who rose to be a defensive specialist and Kevin Willis a veteran center. They did not make it to the palyoffs but still open minded for their Rookie of the Year Vince Carter and improving Tracy McGrady.