Jack enjoyed a career-high season last year with the Indiana Pacers, playing in all 82 games, averaging 13.1 PPG, 4.1 APG, 3.3 RPG, and 1.1 SPG in 33.1 MPG.
Standing 6’3", Jack can play the point-guard position as well as the two spot. His quickness and defensive ability will enable him to produce consistent minutes off of the Raptors bench and immediately contribute to Toronto’s winning percentage.
Toronto’s Air Canada Centre gave a sneak peek at the results of a $48-million expansion to the facility which includes he west side Atrium expansion, new amenities for fans, state-of-the-art technology, a new broadcast studio and improvements to the in-arena fan experience and conversion process.
The facelift to the arena is centred on the western edge of the building and includes a new concourse and main entrance and the studio that’s the site of Raptors and Leafs pre- and post-game TV broadcasts.
There is little to notice in the actual bowl of the arena although a new hydraulic system of seating will make it possible to convert the arena from hockey to basketball quickly enough to potentially allow for both the Raptors and Leafs to play home games on the same day.
Anxious to get an early start, Teague came to town weeks ago, embarking upon a rigorous daily routine of weight-room and on-court work, mostly with Jarrett Jack, a former Georgia Tech star who is now a guard with the Toronto Raptors.
The mere notion that NBA players have an “offseason” is laughable to Jack, an acknowledged gym rat long before he moved from the Flats to the NBA.
“To each his own,” Jack said. “I think for the most part, guys just can’t stay away from it for too long. Guys have their own routines that they do. Me personally, I’m in the gym all the time. I just love to play.”
Busy offseason in Canada. In order to save his job, Brian Colangelo architected a team
to make the playoffs and compete right now. They signed and traded Shawn Marion for Antoine Wright, who helps on the defense event, and Devon George who was already traded to Golden State for shooter Marco Belinelli. Besides all of that Toronto attracted the hottest free agent in the NBA at the time, Hedo Turkoglu, plus they signed Jarrett Jack to run the second unit.
Just taking a quick look at the backgrounds of the staff that Bryan Colangelo and Jay Triano have assembled it is easy to see that this is a very diverse group of people. A Hall of Fame player, international experience, multi-sport backgrounds, scouting, college coaching, National program, NBA head coaching experience and a Canadian.
The Raptors already have a full time investment in the frontcourt in Andrea Bargnani, who had a breakout campaign this season. Where is this all leading? Chris Bosh. The Raptors already received tempting offers from teams this season, there were rumors of the Bulls offering a package that would include the physical monster Tyrus Thomas, and a combination of their many talented wing players (Andres Nocioni, Kirk Hinrich and Ben Gordon were all mentioned), as well the Golden State Warriors were said to have offered centre Andres Biedrins and Corey Maggette. Both these players remain with Golden State, who are looking to make deals this offseason. They were particularly interested in Amare Stoudemire but with his season and possibly career ending eye injury, Bosh is arguably the next best power forward available in the league.
Also troublesome is his recent performance at the European Championships underway right now in Poland. Even with three NBA players on the roster (including new Raptors’ teammate Marco Belinelli), Bargnani’s squad was quickly eliminated from medal contention after disappointing losses to teams like Finland – hardly basketball powerhouses.
The Italian press in fact placed much of the blame for the losses on Bargnani. La Gazzetta Dello Sport even went so far as to say that Bargs justified his "Il Mago" nickname by being able to disappear in games right before the eyes of the crowd!
Unfortunately as Raptors’ fans, we’ve seen this movie before too; the one where Andrea disappears in games for long stretches and in the process ends up being a walking-running basketball liability.
Don’t provide him with a supporting cast he feels accurate? If he’s in Toronto, he’ll sulk and loaf. In New Jersey, he’ll play strong and inspired. Go figure. It’s annoying as hell.
Tell him that he could add four more points per game to his scoring average if he just drove more, getting to the line a la Dwyane Wade. Try it. He won’t do it. It’s annoying as hell.
Vince Carter is annoying as hell. On that, we can all agree.
But he can dunk. And he’s gotten everyone.
And while Bosh never possessed the talent of man like Michael Jordan, his grit and desire to improve his game every year is what could turn him into a superstar in the league, not just a star.
Sure, a cynic could turn to you and say he’s in a contract year, and has nothing but dollar figures to gain from improving his numbers. But to that person I say, what year hasn’t Bosh come back, bigger, better, or more determined? It’s in his nature.
The problem with his lack of skill in the finesse areas of the game is that it’s difficult to justify keeping him on the court for extended periods of time. He’s never averaged more than 24 minutes per game in his seven-year career and he played a career-low 14.4 minutes per game last season. In a big man rotation with Chris Bosh, Andrea Bargnani, Rasho Nesterovic and Amir Johnson, it’s possible and perhaps even advisable that he play even fewer minutes per game next season.