Jan 22, 2014; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Toronto Raptors guard DeMar DeRozan (10) carries the ball past Dallas Mavericks guard-forward Vince Carter (25) at the Air Canada Centre. Toronto defeated Dallas 93-85. Mandatory Credit: John E. Sokolowski-USA TODAY Sports

Remembering 20 Great Seasons of Toronto Raptors Basketball

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As the 20th anniversary of the Toronto Raptor franchise approaches, it is always interesting to look back at some of the best players and moments in the team’s history. Although they are not the most prominent of teams, the Raptors have had their fair share of great players, who through the years helped put basketball in Canada on the map. Let’s take a look at the all-time starting five and acknowledge the best players who ever wore a Toronto Raptors’ uniform.

C, Antonio Davis:

Despite playing only three full seasons with the Raptors, the duo of Charles Oakley and Antonio Davis formed a superior front court in the NBA. The defensive duo helped guide the Raptors to the franchise’s first playoff berth. A strong hustle player who crashed the boards well, Davis was also a fierce shot-blocker who played his best basketball in Toronto.

PF, Chris Bosh:

Feb 3, 2013; Toronto, ON, Canada; Miami Heat forward Chris Bosh (1) during their game against the Toronto Raptors at the Air Canada Centre. The Heat beat the Raptors 100-85. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports

Feb 3, 2013; Toronto, ON, Canada; Miami Heat forward Chris Bosh (1) during their game against the Toronto Raptors at the Air Canada Centre. The Heat beat the Raptors 100-85. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports

Drafted in the star-studded 2003 draft, Chris Bosh became the face of the franchise once Vince Carter left for New Jersey. A double-double machine, Bosh quickly polished his post game to add to his already above-average jump shot. He is the team’s all-time leader in points, rebounds and minutes played, and was the player who kept the Raptors in contention during tough times. Bosh also guided the team to its first division banner and two straight playoff appearances, before jumping ship to Miami during free agency.

SF, Morris Peterson:

Mo-Pete never had a vital role on the team, but after a seven-year tenure with the Raptors, he easily became a fan favourite. A dangerous shooter, Peterson never failed to excite the fans of Toronto – and besides, what Raptors fan can forget his miraculous buzzer-beater against the Washington Wizards?

SG, Vince Carter:

Feb 16, 2013; Houston, TX, USA; The influence of Vince Carter: Toronto Raptors guard Terrence Ross (31) wearing a Carter jersey as he performs a windmill dunk during the 2013 NBA All-Star slam dunk contest at the Toyota Center. Mandatory Credit: Eric Gay/AP via USA TODAY Sports

Feb 16, 2013; Houston, TX, USA; The influence of Vince Carter: Toronto Raptors guard Terrence Ross (31) wearing a Carter jersey as he performs a windmill dunk during the 2013 NBA All-Star slam dunk contest at the Toyota Center. Mandatory Credit: Eric Gay/AP via USA TODAY Sports

He who shall not be named. Hate him or love him, Carter is the greatest Raptor of all time and there really is not any competition. Who put the Toronto Raptors on the map?

Two words, Vince Carter.

Half man, half amazing; Vinsanity was what led to a wave of interest to a sport that was never really that popular in Canada. Carter even influenced players such as Andrew Wiggins and Kevin Durant. Without a doubt, one of the greatest dunkers in the history of the game, Carter made the Raptors must-see TV during the 2000s.

PG, Damon Stoudamire:

Stoudamire, a former Rookie of the Year, was truly the first player produced north of the border. Stoudamire would go on to give the team relevancy despite a few disastrous seasons, and an ugly fallout leading to him being traded to the Blazers. While Mighty Mouse didn’t leave the lasting mark some of the other players on this list did, he will forever be the team’s first ever pick.

Honourable mentions: Jose Calderon, Alvin Williams, Doug Christie, DeMar DeRozan, Jerome “J.Y.D.” Williams

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