John Gaudes

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Power Forward Friday: A return for Bosh?

We’re just sitting down, but we already know how the movie ends. This season will end in an NBA Finals between the Cavaliers and Warriors, as it was foretold by a weak Eastern Conference and a Kevin Durant signing.

While giving a trilogy of Finals matchups its Return of the King moment is exciting, it can leave those on the outside of Oracle and the Q (we the 99%) feeling a little hopeless as the season gets underway. Sure, there are plenty of interesting things happening around the league — new faces, young powers, the almighty questions of continuity. But in a league where radio heads sit on weird podiums and tell us, “it’s all about a championship”, it can lead anyone to sigh and wonder... what are we doing here?

Thankfully, the Raptors have clamoured over the shoulders of other teams, and are one of a handful of prime spoilers, squads that are one piece (or one LeBron ankle injury) away from a Finals berth. Like we heard throughout the playoffs last year, you just have to win and be there to spoil the party. Toronto has balloon pins ready to go.

In order to really boost their chances, though, the Raptors need to acquire a starting power forward. Ever since Kyle Lowry and DeMar DeRozan ascended after the Rudy Gay trade, Toronto has been tailor-made for a stretchy four that the guards can throw the ball into. Despite a 32-point season opener for Jonas Valanciunas, which suggests he’s ready to graduate from cleanup duty, Lowry and DeRozan still run this offense ad nauseam. To be a more well-rounded team, and to take a load off their backcourt minutes, Toronto needs that high post threat. And look, Jared Sullinger is hurt now. They need it bad.

So three years into heavy minutes for Lowry and DeRozan, and with the team closer than ever to breaking through (we hope), the time has never been better for an acquisition.

This is my attempt to diagnose the Raptors’ need. I want to dream out loud about power forwards who can fit the gap in the Raptors offense, and look at how they fit basketball-wise and feels-wise. Then we can pass judgment and deem the nominee fit or unfit.

Let’s start this thing with the man, the former Raptor, the Nickelodeon Teen Choice Award attendee pictured above: Chris Bosh.

Read the rest of my weekly column, evaluating different power forwards and their fit with the Toronto Raptors, at Raptors HQ.