Originally written on Crossover Chronicles  |  Last updated 11/20/14
Memphis-grizzlies-oklahoma
Rudy Gay became a Toronto Raptor last week and you would be excused for thinking that he had been liberated from a Grizzly prison upon his departure from Memphis, if you listened to his comments this week on Toronto radio. That is right: the man formerly known as the highest paid man on the Grizz is now the highest paid Raptor -- but will he be the best performing Raptor? There are those who will argue that despite being the team's leading scorer (17.2ppg) in Memphis, Gay was but the third or even fourth most effective player on the roster behind the likes of Zach Randolph (15.7ppg, 11.7rpg), Marc Gasol (13.5ppg, 7.6rpg, 3.5apg, 1.7bpg, 1.0spg) and Mike Conley (13.2ppg, 5.8apg, 2.3spg). Now in his seventh season, Gay has had his worst scoring and shooting (40.8%) performance since his rookie season. Whether this was a product of his own poor form, or the situation he found himself in on the Grizzlies roster, it became apparent that a change was needed. 'I was excited for a new start. I’ve known a lot of these guys here and I’ve been a fan of DeMar’s for a long time. I like the fact that he’s gotten better and better every year. So it was cool. It was a new start for me,' said Gay. Gay's first three games in Toronto certainly look like those of a liberated player. He has put up a hugely improved 24.7 points per game, 6.3 rebounds per game and 2.7 steals per game, while shooting 2.1 percent better at 42.9%. Part of that improvement may come back to the family feel that Gay has for the Raptors -- particularly with his relationship with Kyle Lowry. I wouldn’t even say it’s my boy, it’s like my brother. His son is my Godson. I’ve known him since we were 14, so it’s good to have somebody like [that], especially with this transition. Whether that turns around Gay's season and that of the 17-32 Raptors will be interesting to see. With Toronto sitting fifth in the Atlantic Division, they are certainly not in the playoff hunt. However the core is there for a bright future. Between Gay, Lowry, Andrea Bargnani, Amir Johnson and DeMar DeRozan there is a five with an average age of 25. How many pieces are the Raptors away from contending, according to Gay? I say one — one piece. I think honestly we can get there with this team but I think we could really make noise if we have one more piece. It doesn’t take a lot, because everybody’s going to pick up their game and everybody’s gonna come prepared to try to win. [follow]
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Floyd Mayweather, Manny Pacquiao close to deal for fight

TJ Lang: Suh wanted to fight me after stepping on Aaron Rodgers

Aaron Hernandez jurors allowed to watch Super Bowl

Tiger misses cut: ‘I’m only doing this so I won’t get fined’

Roger Goodell grilled on Deflategate during presser

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Rex Ryan: Seahawks need to ‘take the air out of the football’

J.J. Watt buys cabin in the middle of nowhere to train

Six teams have done background work on Peterson

NBA set to earn $700M through streaming deal in China

Wade Phillips is the best coordinator hire this offseason

Bill Belichick gives understated scouting report of Tom Brady

WATCH: Serena Williams loses point for yelling "come on!"

Report: Missy Elliott joining Katy Perry for halftime show

WATCH: Jimmy Butler throws down half-court alley-oop

President Obama zings Patriots over Deflate-gate

Each major conference's Player Of The Year candidates

Super Bowl XLIX preview and predictions: Patriots-Seahawks

49 Stops to Super Bowl XLIX

Most unexpected MLB free agent signings of past 10 years

Five most villainous Super Bowls of all time

Super Bowl ad focuses on acceptance of gay athletes

Foster says UT boosters paid him $40-50K while in college

Ranking the repeat Super Bowl champions

NBA News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Missy Elliott to join Katy Perry at SB?

Obama zings Pats over Deflate-gate

Each major conference's POY candidates

Super Bowl XLIX preview and predictions: Patriots vs. Seahawks

The 13 things we want to see in Super Bowl XLIX

49 Stops to Super Bowl XLIX

Tiger Woods, misses cut: ‘I’m only doing this so I won’t get fined’

Ranking the repeat SB champions

Roger Goodell grilled on Deflategate

Katy Perry, Russell Wilson dating?

Rex Ryan has advice for Seahawks

Super Bowl: Things you can't control

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.