Thursday, June 26, 2008

SPORTS: The O'Neal Deal

Apparently the Jermaine O'Neal deal is done. He's coming, TJ Ford, Rasho Nesterovic and probably Joey Graham are headed the other way ... accompanied by that 17th draft pick in tonight's draft. Well, it will be a quiet draft from Toronto's perspective.

Or maybe not. Bryan Colangelo sure seemed quick to rhyme off a dozen to 15 names as potential draftees. And with first-round draft picks being available for straight cash, we might see a new Raptor take the stage afterall. But not likely.

I haven't wavered on my take on the deal. I'd have done it more happily without losing that draft pick. I'll take the deal since it will change the dynamic of the team and get that mental mope Ford out of town. But I wish I was more confident in O'Neal's knee. Last time the vibe was THIS bad on a newly-acquired Raptor, Toronto was about to pay for Hakeem Olujawon's early retirement. But, if it goes south, then the Raptors have a boatload of cap space when the bonanza free agent summer arrives two years hence.

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