NBA: Top 5 Greatest Raptors of all time
The Toronto Raptors entered the league in 1995 and since then, over 200 players have suited up for the Six. Although the Raptors have yet to win a single chip, there have been players from the Six who dazzled us with killer crossovers, acrobatic shots, emphatic blocks, and breath-taking throwdowns.
In this piece, we will be taking an in-depth look at the five greatest players to ever play at the North of the Border. Unlike any other list, this piece will focus mainly on the impact of players in Toronto and in Canada basketball as a whole. So let's get started.
#5 Damon Stoudamire
Before Damon Stoudamire called the shots for the University of Pacific, the Mighty Mouse played for the Raptors during its inaugural season after being selected with the seventh overall pick in the 1995 NBA Draft.
Stoudamire, who was the first-ever pick in the team's history, showed some flashes of brilliance in his time with Toronto averaging a franchise-leading 8.8 assists per game. During his rookie year, Stoudamire posted stellar averages of 19.9 points and nine assists per game while hitting a rookie-record of 133 threes in a season.
For his exquisite play, Stoudamire was recognized by the league as the 1995-96 NBA Rookie of the Year.
In his three seasons with Toronto, Stoudamire put up 19.6 points, 8.8 assists, 4.1 rebounds, and 1.5 steals. His best year with the team came in during his sophomore season wherein he tallied 20.2 points, 8.8 assists, and 4.1 rebounds.
However, Stoudamire's time with the Raptors was cut short when he joined the Portland Trail Blazers during the 1997-1998 season. After leaving the Raptors, Stoudamire never recaptured his old form back as he failed to crack the 15 points per game mark with the Trail Blazers, the Memphis Grizzlies, and the San Antonio Spurs.