Toronto Raptors: 14 bold predictions for the 2017-18 season

MILWAUKEE, WI - APRIL 27: DeMar DeRozan /
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Toronto Raptors
CLEVELAND, OH – MAY 25: Dwane Casey of the Toronto Raptors looks on in the second half against the Cleveland Cavaliers in game five of the Eastern Conference Finals during the 2016 NBA Playoffs at Quicken Loans Arena on May 25, 2016 in Cleveland, Ohio. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images) /

13) Dwane Casey’s coaching seat stays cool

It’s peacetime in coaching circles. We’ve entered an unprecedented era of coaching stability in the NBA, where no coach has been fired in the past 17 months.

Casey’s seat has been perpetually hot for the past three years. Every possible first round exit succeeding a season of the most stagnant offences I’ve seen in my lifetime came with possible calls for Casey’s head.

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But this year he’s finally earned significant cache. Back-to-back 50 win seasons and a bench filled with youngsters, Casey has an alibi if things go sideways.

A new system always takes time to learn regardless of age and with such a drastic alteration in playstyle, hiccups are expected along the way. Some of the Raptors’ best bench pieces fell off this offseason  Nobody is really expecting the Raptors to make it the conference finals again.

Expectations are pretty low this season, which is nice if you’re the coach. Win bigger than expected and everyone looks at you like a gem, flounder a bit and it’s all that was expected.