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Raptors GM: 'It appears we will utilize the pick'

TORONTO -- The Raptors most likely will keep the top pick in the NBA draft, with their choices believed to be down to Italian forward Andrea Bargnani or Texas forward LaMarcus Aldridge.

"At this point, it seems to be that we are more or less locked
in at the No. 1 spot," general manager Bryan Colangelo said
Tuesday. "It's the day before the draft, and it appears we will
utilize the pick."

Colangelo said he has taken calls from several teams since Toronto won the draft lottery.

"There have been quite a few inquiries about the pick, nothing
we felt was enough to change our course and use the selection,"
said Colangelo, whose team has the No. 1 selection for the first
time. "The offers that we received were not in the caliber that we
felt it required to move the pick."

Also Tuesday, the Raptors exercised their options on second-year players Charlie Villanueva and Joey Graham through the 2007-08
season.

The Raptors had until Oct. 31 to exercise those options. Colangelo has said he wants to build the team around his young core
of Villanueva, Graham and Chris Bosh.

Villanueva, the seventh overall pick last year, averaged 13.0 points and 6.4 rebounds in 81 games last season, including 36 starts. He set a team rookie record with 48 points in a game and was named to the All-Rookie first team.

Graham was selected by Toronto with the 16th pick and averaged 6.7 points and 3.1 rebounds in 80 games, including 24 as a starter.