It’s that time of year again, the fifth in a row for the Raptors, when thoughts turn from playoffs to next year.

Or, more precisely, who will be back next year in a Raptors uniform and who won’t.

Already the stories have started trickling out led, of course, with everyone’s best guess as to whether there is another year left in Andrea Bargnani’s tenure in Toronto.

That’s a debate that will be played out ad nauseam until a decision is made and frankly it’s one of which we’ve long since tired.

But there is a name that has been on many of those already published lists that just doesn’t sit right.

Alan Anderson’s name seems to show up with regularity among the won’t-be-backs and from this corner, that’s makes no sense.

In terms of a value find, Anderson has no equal on the Raptors. Only Quincy Acy, presently in the D-League, makes less than the $885,120 Anderson made this season.

He came out the development league at (comparatively) next to no cost to the Raptors.

There is no draft pick that should have been taken instead of him because Anderson was not drafted by the Raptors.

He is found money and he has been paying dividends since he arrived.

He even arrived NBA ready. Having played most of five years in Europe following a short stint in the NBA and with a nice collegiate career at Michigan State behind him, Anderson had already grown into his body when he arrived in Toronto. There is no waiting for him to bulk up.

But more importantly, Anderson arrived knowing how to play the NBA game. As basic as that sounds, compare him to any rookie who quite properly needs time to adjust to the speed of the NBA game and the strength of the NBA game and the rigours of an NBA schedule, and the comparison isn’t even a fair one.