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Old 05-25-06, 05:06 AM
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Toronto had been after big man from Italy (may trade top pick)

The rumor going around had been that Toronto, figuring to get the fifth pick, was lined up to take Andrea Bargnani, a long-distance shooting big man from Italy.

The talk in Toronto is Bryan Colangelo was going to concentrate on international players because the organization has had issues with American players living in Canada. Also, the Raptors just hired a top Italian league executive and Colangelo's wife is a native of Italy. They spend considerable time there. But the NBA consensus is Bargnani isn't that talented to use for the top pick even though he draws the usual Dirk Nowitzki comparisons as a perimeter-shooting big man.

Toronto could trade down to get Bargnani. They aren't exactly a championship contender now, need pieces and could lose free agent point guard Mike James.



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