There’s not much to analyze in this game and even if there was, I don’t want to because of the big elephant in the room, who I will get to very shortly, worry not. The Raptors had one of their worst games of the season. Jay Triano’s coaching got exposed for the second night in a row. The Timberwolves actually didn’t shoot that well, which is the norm for them, but the Raptors were awful offensively. DeRozan never got on track, but took just 11 shots, many of which were later in the game, but showed some good defense to make up for it. Sonny Weems seems to have a negative impact on this team since his return, playing token defense and jacking up questionable shots. He is hurting DeMar’s development. It’s time to pick one of the two and stick with it, and we all know who that should be now. There have been a few games like this where the team looked like it had checked out by the 3rd quarter.
Sam Mitchell got fired for far less than this. Actually, Mitchell didn’t get fired because of the performance of the on-court product. He got canned because he didn’t give certain players minutes if they didn’t deserve it. If they didn’t D up with at least close to 100% effort. Kevin Love would play on Sam Mitchell’s team, a lot. He would ride the shit out of Amir Johnson and Ed Davis, and Julian Wright would actually have a consistent role. Jack Armstrong, who kind of lost it last night which was extremely refreshing to see, better be a little careful being too critical about this team and his players, or he might suffer Sam Mitchell’s fate. You think I’m joking? He’s even taking not-so-veiled shots at Bargnani.
Ten million dollars. That’s about how much gets deposited into Bargnani’s coffers every year. If you made around fifty grand, it would take you 200 years to make that same kind of money. How hard do you work? How hard would you work if you made that kind of money and thousands of people like me and you who are die-hard fans counted on you to entertain us with a winning product? When people drive 10+ hours to Minnesota to eagerly watch you hopefully win against an equally bad team? You shoot 5 – 24, and even with the sheer guilt of being useless offensively, couldn’t grab more than 3 rebounds? Are you kidding me?
3 rebounds. It’s like we’ve all become immune to the fact our starting center just grabbed 3 damn rebounds. If Al Horford, Andrew Bogut, Joakim Noah, or any other center grabs 3, you’re googling that to see how that could possibly happen. Not on the Toronto Raptors. That’s ok Andrea, and the 5 – 24 is ok too, you were just “a little out of sync offensively” like Jay Triano said after the game. The fact that him and Sonny Weems took so many shots that DeMar DeRozan’s first shot attempt was at the first quarter buzzer, that’s ok too. We know you’re not good at anything else Andrea, so get your 20 points, because we know that everyone will forget about the 5 – 24 eventually and just see that nice 20 beside your scoring average. You’re down by 26 in the fourth, and Martell Webster starts his drive from the top of the key, Bargnani just waiting there, and Webster just flushes it hard as the crowd goes wild. Bargnani just braces himself so that Webster’s legs don’t hit him the face. Nice. That’s what the Toronto Raptors are all about now, not Charles Oakley, Antonio Davis, shit even Kevin Willis. They were joking on NBA TV after the game about that play. How the “red sea parted” as Webster came through. Even Jack Armstrong felt that Webster should have been out on his ass. Jack even said that maybe, paraphrasing now, “you tell the guy you gotta get 10 and 10 and if you don’t, then you sit on the bench”. Hahaha, that’s funny Jack, good one.
I’m sick and tired of this farcical situation about this “unique” talent and his GM and asisstant GM of the same nationality. Yeah, I said it. There’s a strong element of favouritism because they are all Italian. Maurizio probably knows his family well and they talk all the time and all this stuff is more important that the fact that this team will be a laughingstock with him as a starting center. And not just a bad center, one that’s spoiled and lazy. I used to brush aside this notion of favoritism but now it’s unavoidable. Or maybe BC and Maurizio think that this is the kind of player that will help you become a winner, which is even more discouraging if it’s true. It’s making me less and less of a fan, and I never thought that would happen. I’ve always been the eternal optimist, Arse was usually the one who brought things down to a more sobering reality. I was really excited about Andrea Bargnani at one point. Now his presence is all that is bad about the Toronto Raptor organization right now. Being bad is one thing, but lack of equity is just a turn off. And now I’m becoming a bitter fan that hates the way Colangelo operates and am losing my interest in the team because of that. Maybe that’s what it will take to end this Il Mago experiment, when the fans stay away. Or maybe a signed petition of some sort. Not even joking.
Watch Bargnani in the post-game presser. Never blames himself and shrugs half the time at reporters like nothing happened. No emotion. Caliper test FTW. 10 million dollars. 200 years. Think about it. Kevin Love probably does. I’ll end this tirade with a quote from the one and only Mr. Love about rebounding and why he’s so good at it:
He taught me about what he learned from playing with and against those guys — positioning and footwork — but more than anything, he taught me there’s a mindset to rebounding: It’s about assuming every shot is going to miss and how Bill Russell always used to say 80 percent of rebounds are below the rim and knowing I could have a lot of success doing it.
I didn’t have to be the most athletic guy. I didn’t have to be the tallest guy or have the longest arms. I just had to have brute strength and the tenacity to go after every single one.
I’m 6-9 without shoes on the best day of my life.
The will to rebound — to get every single one there is — isn’t something you can measure.
It’s something I feel either you have [it] or you don’t.
I think my dad focused on rebounding with me so I’d be more than just a scorer or passer. So if other things weren’t going right, I could always rebound. That was something that could still make me special. Even if I ever ended up on a team where I wasn’t getting the ball too much, I’d always know I could get four to six points just off offensive rebounds.
- Toronto Raptors Morning Coffee Jan 30
- Statophile, Volume 11