The “hell of an effort but you were playing against 8 men all night” edition.
Banks – with his rugged good looks, he just might be thankful he isn’t seeing any playing time.
Bargnani – time for the fanboys to earn their keep. Had a good stretch in the third quarter, but otherwise just not the type of game you can accept from your usual #2 and now #1 option. Time to reach down and feel those things that hang between your legs and prove you have ‘em, because in spite of that frightened look you have on your face, you are the man for the rest of this season. Hey, we don’t want you to be either, but neither of us have a choice.
Belinelli – honestly the epitome of despair. The fact he is dressed and actually sees the floor is a testament to how desperate we are right now. In the 4 minutes he played, he committed more gaffes than POB has done in all his garbage time put together.
Bosh – hopefully he caught some/all of this game and saw that his guys put forth a valiant effort. I also hope Hadi found some hospital scrubs that fit him.
Calderon – he mocked the home crowd that booed him after an air ball. Typically I’d be on his side immediately, since, at the time, the Raps were close and were playing fairly well. However, Jose, you’ve been playing like ass lately and the crowd deserved that shot at you. It did appear to wake you up a bit, so it must have worked in some way. Still, 6 FGAs and the situations they came from…just not having it. Whatever is providing that mental block needs to be addressed and knocked down.
DeRozan – continues to bring it on the offensive end off the bench. Particularly impressive in the fourth tonight with some nice attacking moves and showing that he hasn’t forgotten how to run the floor. I still get that impression he feels somewhat “starstruck” when he plays certain teams. His play in the playoffs will be interesting to watch.
Evans – it’s too bad we didn’t have boom mics set up in every Raptors fans home to hear the reaction when they saw Reggie in the starting line up. Sure, he wasn’t in there long and, sure, he was up against somebody that has the agility of a bull riding a Segway, but still. How did he do? About as well as if that bull was riding that Segway in a thick forest. Still seems to be the #1 target (even over Bargnani) of any Raptor player with the ball. Give it to Reggie and watch the magic happen. Makes me sick.
Jack – Hey Jose Manuel……you see that guy that replaces you? You see how he plays with heart and determination, how he drives to the hoop, how he stands up for himself, how he hits the rim with his shots? Try being a bit more like him, eh? Jarrett had another inspiring game that shows us how lucky we are to have the two headed PG machine. He truly has been the backbone of this team lately.
Johnson – you know when you go to the doctor to have your little swimmers tested (or you go to the sperm bank to donate in order to get money, just like A-Dub does so he can buy the latest X-Men “graphic novel”) and they give you this fairly sizable dixie-cup in order to place your sample in? You think to yourself that maybe they are expecting just a wee bit too much of you. Well, Amir is your spunk and Raptors fans are the cup. He’s trying to fulfill your hopes and desires, but just can’t get it all together to come through. Come through. Get it?
Nesterovic – I respect any guy that can play well past his bedtime. Did you see him lumbering up and down the court at times? He looked like a 3-legged camel, but he played hard and played well. He fouled his man with authority, tried to rekindle his outside shot, and probably is in a tub of ice as we speak.
O’Bryant – something that will put the fear of God into some: Patrick is back in uniform. The only thing more terrifying would be if we found out Sprite upped their ad-buy budget and now we get to see that Drake commercial during every commercial break.
Turkoglu- played 7 minutes and then..wait for it…wait for it…got hit in the face and was taken to the hospital for a CT scan. Incredible. What sucked is, just like Bosh last night, Hedo was off to a fair start. He was active on defence and was actually running hard without the ball. Unlike what some fools say without watching the game, with Bosh gone for the rest of the regular season, we need all hands on deck to stem the tide.
Weems – A career night for a guy that deserves it more than some. Anybody that said practice pays off can use him as a posterchild. All those nights at the gym shooting jumpers and layups have paid off and he surely has solidified a role in the starting lineup. He once again started on fire and ended up 8/13, was at the line for 5 of Toronto’s 12 free throws, had 5 rebounds and 21 points. Not going to get that from him every night, but he left it all on the floor on a night we needed every ounce to keep us in it.
Wright – was removed from the starting lineup, but hobbled his way on to the court in the first and played with some fire. You could tell he wasn’t 100%, but he was close, letting some beauty haymakers go from deep. He’s like that construction worker you see working on the 40th floor of a building in the middle of winter with the wind blowing in off the lake. He may not be pretty, but he’s gonna give you what he has. Tonight he did: 17points, 7 rebounds.
Driving The Bus: Sonny Weems
Under The Bus: Marco Belinelli
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