steph

Those five games in summer league have served as a marketing platform for the Raptors. They’ve released a documentary or sorts chronicling the exploits of the now officially branded Young Gunz. It’s a four-part series on raptors.com which uses phrases like “the future”, “face of the franchise”, “Vegas started to take notice” and a lot of other stuff that would be well-suited for David Attenborough to narrate as Weems and DeRozan dunk over Blake Griffin’s brother.

The season might be over but the marketing machine never stops and MLSE is bound to be hoping that creating hype where there isn’t much hype can sell some season tickets, or at least renew them. Let’s be serious, we all want to be pumped up about the Raptors, but don’t feed us summer-league highlights to get us excited. I’ll be pumped when the team does something when it matters, against NBA opposition. I don’t want to play Debbie Downer but that’s the truth.

Marco Belinelli got traded yesterday in a defense-for-offense move which registered a 0.0001 on the “I care scale”. Safe to say he didn’t live up to the hype and it’s entirely his own fault and as much as I hate to say it, Don Nelson was right about him. Julian Wright comes the other way, a young defender who possesses the same offensive skills as a newborn: none. The good news is that it’s easier to be a defensive specialist than it is an offensive weapon, the latter requires a degree of tangible skill like shooting, dribbling, creativity and finishing whereas playing defense is more about effort. I’m not suggesting that playing defense doesn’t require skill, but it’s a skill that is born of effort (which Doc Rivers swears is a skill). Got that? Good.

More trade rumours. Remember that great deal Charlotte pulled off when they acquired Erick Dampier and his begging-to-be-waived contract? Well, they tried to get in on the orgy of a deal from yesterday by dressing up Dampier’s contract in a revealing outfit, but it didn’t work. Charlotte is apparently still looking to acquire Jose Calderon but without Chandler, they’re about as attractive a trading partner as Rosie O’Donnell is a prom date.

The Raptors will be going to Vancouver for training camp. They say it’s for training camp but in reality it’s to rub salt in the wounds of the four Grizzlies fans still left in Vancouver. Now, now, the Grizzlies had great fan support, unfortunately they had Stu Jackson as a GM. Or Laurence Fishburne, could never tell the difference. The training camp will be held at the University of British Columbia, which is a spot I’ve been to. They have great swimming facilities, an outstanding outdoor pool and the nudist Wreck Beach happens to be just around the corner. I was there on a conference about three years ago and curiosity got the better of me as I wandered over to the Wreck to see what the big deal was all about. I will never go back. It is not what I thought it would be.

If you want some more fuel for your Bosh hate, read this.

I have to work now. My boss might just fire me today. Will keep you posted.