The “come on, beat us from the outside, we dare ya” edition.
Banks – 9 minutes of back up duty that amounted to nothing. The Raptors are getting as much out of this guy as they would a fire hydrant in the desert.
Bargnani – things always go well when he attacks the hoop early. Absolutely love to see him drive the lane. It opens up his outside shot and, in my opinion, it gives him confidence. Picked up 3 first half fouls, which put him on the bench, but he came back in to play well on both ends of the floor. He fought for boards today and even though he was exposed on D by Landry, once Bosh was put on him, Bosh was too.
Belinelli – easily outshone tonight by the rest of his benchmates. His lack of production is nailing him to the bench and you have to wonder if the solid play by Weems and Johnson aren’t knocking him down a peg.
Bosh – this is the type of game he should easily post a double double, so one has to question why he didn’t. Triano sat him just 4 minutes into the 3rd quarter as it was evident his head just wasn’t in it. He was doing (and did) well offensively, but the battle on the boards and his rotations were a step below what they should be. Sure, you are playing a team of hustlers, but your length and athleticism should negate that.
Calderon – first of many nights of not having to shower before heading out to For Your Eyes Only. He’s dapped up and ready to go.
DeRozan – the swoon continues. He needs to be reminded that getting fouled and going to the line is a great way to get yourself going. He’s back to looking disconnected with this offense. Of course, had Ariza connected with that elbow, DeMar would have had his first taste of Canadian health care.
Evans – Made plans to join Jose at the club, but the bouncers were too busy laughing at his outfit to let him past. What the heck was with that shirt and jacket combo? Man alive.
Jack – hell of a game. Actually, that deserves a repeat. Hell of a game. He was the catalyst today and showed why he moved into the starters role in Indy. I’m still not sure, even after this game, he has done so here, but 17, 8 and 8 doesn’t even speak to how well he orchestrated this win. Throw in the fact that he was the first to step to Ariza after Trevor attempted to decapitate DeMar and the crowd should have been chanting his name a la Bonner. Concerned about his minutes, though, if Jose is gone for a good spell.
Johnson – showed a little offensive flair today with some nice passes, had a fierce block and brought his hustle game. Also played in control, which will continue to be his undoing. That play where he was holding his man off with his right arm, jumped and blocked the shot with his left was pretty.
Mensah-Bonsu – ah, the joy of playing against a former team. Did he save his job tonight? I doubt it. He needs to play like this against the other 28 teams in the league and do it consistently. Doubt he has that ability. His hard work also didn’t get repaid by his teammates. He had 2 beautiful blocks that ended up just being turned over by us on the other end. Have to cash those in.
Nesterovic – love to be a fly on the wall when he goes home after these games. “Hi honey, how was work?” “Typical day, dear. I just rode everybody else’s coattails. Oh, Marco is coming over to play Pictionary. Hide the sharp objects and make sure the word ‘successful’ isn’t used. You know what happened the last time he saw that word. Which reminds me, we still have to replace those pillows he tore to shreds with the scissors.”
O’Bryant – word on the street is he is practicing his Punjabi just so he can feel part of these Sunday games on CBC.
Turkoglu- all that was missing was a clutch shot to win the game, but he showed us exactly what we expected when Colangelo went after him. 23, 5 and 6, he was active, he created and he was talking. Completely different body language again. It’s such a strange thing to watch.
Weems – extended minutes off the bench and he made the most of it. Put in 29 minutes, shot 50%, was diving and driving. He stepped up on a day when we needed to be pumping on all cylinders and he proved to be the oil. Great game. Attacking Buddinger early, getting the and-1 and then stepping over Chase’s carcass set the tone.
Wright – didn’t get off the bench. I’m sure matchups had as much to do with it as Weems looking like Pippen out there. Still, hope this DNP-CD acts as a slap in the face to the kid and he grows a set.
Driving The Bus: Jarrett Jack
Under The Bus: Marcus Banks
Tags: Amir Johnson, andrea bargnani, Antoine Wright, basketball, Chris Bosh, Demar DeRozan, Hedo Turkoglu, Jarrett Jack, jose calderon, marco belinelli, Marcus Banks, NBA, patrick o'bryant, Rasho Nesterovic, Reggie Evans, Sonny Weems, toronto raptors