Toronto Raptors to honor ex-player Tracy McGrady


mcgrady-raptorsFormer NBA player Tracy McGrady will be honored by his former team, Toronto Raptors, as part of their 20th anniversary celebrations, the Star reported.

McGrady played his first 3 NBA seasons with Toronto, appearing in 192 games, averaging 11.1 ppg in 24.7 mpg.

McGrady will arrive in Toronto for GM Masai Ujiri’s Giants of Africa fundraiser honouring Nelson Mandela. Former All-Star will be introduced to the crowd during the game. A highlight reel of his time in Toronto will also be shown.

After McGrady’s Raptors’ three-year rookie contract was up, he left the team in 2000. Previously, McGrady, who had come off the bench in his first two seasons, had just become a starter, and helped lead the team to its first-ever playoff berth.

Following his leave from the Raptors, McGrady went on to become the league’s superstar with Orlando Magic and Houston Rockets. Raptors fans were bitter about McGrady’s departure, as he was booed mercilessly in subsequent visits to town.

In a 2013 interview with the Star, McGrady expressed regret for leaving what could have turned into a contender (in the 2000-01 season, the Raptors fell one game short of the Eastern Conference final).

“In hindsight, looking back, obviously I wish I had stayed in Toronto,” McGrady said. “There’s no doubt we could have contended for a championship. I think about that often.”

McGrady retired from the NBA, following a rather bleak short stay with the San Antonio Spurs in the NBA Playoffs in 2012-2013. He played in 15 NBA seasons, 4 of them with Orlando Magic.

McGrady was a 7-time NBA All-Star and led the NBA in scoring for 2 straight seasons (2002-2003, 2003-2004) with 32.1 ppg and 28.0 ppg respectively. He was also the NBA’s Most Improved Player in 2001. He nearly won his first NBA title, but the Spurs lost to the Miami Heat in an epic seven-game finals series in 2013.

McGrady averaged 19.6 points, 5.6 rebounds and 4.4 assists per game in a career that started in 1997, when he was drafted out of high school.


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