Like most fans, some NBA stars unsurprisingly also have their biggest “what if” of all time. And if you’re a player who has played in four eras like Vince Carter, you surely have many of them in your head. But in one exclusive interview, “Vinsanity” tried to pick the biggest what-if in his legendary career.
Canada could’ve had 2 NBA superstars
As we all know, Carter and Tracy McGrady are cousins. The younger T-Mac opted to leapfrog other basketball prospects and jumped straight to the NBA after high school in 1997. On the other hand, Carter honed his game at the University of North Carolina before declaring for the draft the following year.
The exciting cousin duo played two seasons together with the Toronto Raptors. However, after the Raptors got swept by the New York Knicks in the first round in 2000, Toronto decided to ship McGrady to the Orlando Magic via a sign-and-trade deal.
Since then, Carter and McGrady carved their paths with their respective teams and found tremendous success in the process. Carter became the cornerstone of the Raptors, while T-Mac also took off and blossomed into one of the best scorers in the league.
Reflecting on the subject, Carter couldn’t help but wonder “what if” he and McGrady never parted ways. It’s understandable that “Air Canada” has a lot of what-ifs, but that one has always been there.
“What if I did make that shot [against the Sixers in Game 7]? What if I did? What happens next? I don’t know. What if T-Mac and I had a chance to play together longer?,” Carter told NBA.com in 2019. “I got another one. What if we don’t lose to Boston in six back when I was in Orlando? Cause we had a chance. They ended up going to The Finals. That was my other opportunity so I wonder what if. I always wondered that.”
They parted and never reunited
Carter and McGrady had no choice but to move on. They delighted fans with their God-given basketball skills for almost a decade, becoming two of the greatest players of their generation. Carter got traded several times and played for seven more teams. But fate never reunited him with McGrady.
Looking back at what the then-perennial All-Stars had accomplished individually in their stellar careers, Carter isn’t the only one thinking about what could’ve happened had he and T-Mac stayed together in Toronto.