The “Jack hates Liston” edition:

Ajinca: he’s like the guy they send in to sweep up after the porn shoot. He’s hoping to score with whatever is left over.

Alabi: nice guy, no hope.

Barbosa: that loud groan you heard this morning was Leandro opening up his curtains in his condo.

Bargnani: I would never call him useless. Maybe “not worthwhile”. To say he has hit a bump in the road is like saying Hamilton had a bit of snow and Arsenalist loves Hemingways. Stating the obvious. Also, not to say it’s fact, but it sure as heck  looked like he was bickering with Jay about blown zone coverage, which, when you consider the source, is quite hysterical.

Bayless: he has the basketball persona of that 9 year old brat you would be beating at checkers and, rather than lose, he flips the board over and walks away in a snit. You beat Bayless one on one and he’s coming back at you and ignoring all other teammates. He could have Andrea AND DeMar wide open under the basket and he’s driving.

Calderon: he made the lone 3, he got another double double and his hair looked good. Other than those positives, he sucked. No, really.

Davis: no blocked shots by wee Ed tonight mostly because people were blowing by him like a redneck heading to the buffet table. He took the night off offensively and blended into the empty seats a bit too much.

DeRozan: one of those games where he looks to be on a tear and gets hampered by foul trouble. The ones called tonight were ticky tack, but as one of the best players on the floor he will attract that attention. Shot the ball well, was aggressive, but also holds the shame of no trips to the line..which is where he should be building a futon and living.

Dorsey: give Elvis his guitar back, chump.

Evans: he’ll be back sooner than the Drake Sprite commercial.

A. Johnson: the confidence is back, the determination is back, his back is back. Another great game from a man who has just as much to prove as Andrea does. Too bad they can never be hot at the same time. 20/14 against a Hawks team that is pretty intimidating. Memorable night.

T. Johnson:  some solid minutes but nothing that would warrant keeping him around.

Kleiza: hope he’s a snow owl.

Weems: every so often even the smelly kid at school showers. Weems had a nice night and showed flashes of being the Sonny of old in attacking the basket and knocking down jumpers with ease. Then he had some rest and realized who he really was and went back to performing like Lady Gaga on helium.

Wright: I couldn’t believe he played 12minutes. Seemed like he was out there for 2-3 and got pulled.  Need a nice stretch of games from him again. He’s definitely an X factor off the bench, but lately he’s been performing like A-Dub at Garth Brooks Karaoke Night.

Driving The Bus: Amir Johnson

Under The Bus: Andrea Bargnani

Game Theme:

  • WhatWhat

    May I propose another nickname for Bargnani: White Swan.

    • Arsenalist

      ROTD.

  • barenakedman

    That missed fade away jumper with nobody between Bargs and the basket tells me he’s gotten afraid to go to the hole. Take that part of his game away and really what do they have in him?

  • jlongs

    Well, we all knew what was gonna happen…and true enough it did. A win would almost feel like a miracle at this point. Even against the Cavs.

  • voy

    the ajinca line, best line ever!!! I’d gladly eat another 13 losses in a row to read another classic like that. well done.

  • Milesboyer

    I don’t know which Sonny Weems you were watching but the only thing he was doing with ease was putting up bricks.

  • Balls of Steel

    Man, the honeymoon is over for Bargs. He’s like a cat in its 12th life…

  • Paps

    Bubba Sparxxx in tha house. Atlanta’s a tough team, hopefully Toronto can draft well and be what they are in a few years. They have a few guys already in that mold. One can hope.

    • Nilanka15

      It’s scary to think how good that Hawks team would be with Deron Williams or Chris Paul (instead of Marvin Williams).

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=504323292 Cito Knickz

    thought they would get it done…not going to bash anyone because we are all in favor of getting a top pick

  • Arsenalist

    Somewhere Sam Mitchell is laughing his ass off and Peddie is putting the final touches on BC’s shiny new contract.

    The one thing this team was good at last couple years was hitting the three, now that’s even gone. Surprised they even kept it close, can we hit 16 losses in a row? Yes. We. Can.

    • WhatWhat

      Friday’s game is key; if they don’t win that, they won’t have a serious shot of winning another game until March.

    • tonious35

      20 losses… f%$#%’n book it. Yes. We. Can.

    • Balls of Steel

      Can we lose between now and the trade deadline? Yes. We. Can.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/David-Morris/713738372 David Morris

    at this point this team might as well lose every game, as they will not make the playoffs in any way, shape or form, final season win tally cleveland 15, toronto 15 but toronto gets first based on easier schedule and total lack of effort, time to trade most of the team, maybe they can get some 1st rounders for the wasted talent that does not even try anymore, keep ed davis trade everyone else

    • Nilanka15

      According to Hoopsworld, Bulls are looking for a shooting guard, and DeRozan is on their list (along with Anthony Parker, Courtney Lee, Shannon Brown and OJ Mayo). No idea what they’d be willing to offer though.

  • Spanish_eddie

    With Barbosa out we’re the 2nd worse team in the league…which obviously translates to a very high draft pick. What about Leandro going ahead with that arm surgery now and coming back next year healthy (ie tanking this year) ?What’s the point of fighting through that, and now this hamstring deal, in order that he might steal 5 games we don’t really want to win.

  • Spanish_eddie

    and i hate to bring this up on a very rare occasion where it’s not already being argued ad nauseum…but about the whole bargnani bashers vs his supporters thing…seriously, what do people see him doing on the basketball court that make them believe that he can be a contributing piece of a winning basketball team?

    • cb

      great question. one that most of us intelligent basketball observers have been asking of the fan boys for over 3 years now. and still they persist. really tho, their baseline defense consists of calling us “haters”; which poetically is about as much defense as AB provides.

  • FAQ

    50 games played for a 13-37 record. Only another 32 games left.

    I see the Raptors finishing off the rest of the season at 1-31 … since they only play the Cav once again. I can’t see them beating Minny, but it’s a remote possibility.

    And that’s all she wrote … so come the draft, Raptors are sitting there with the second worst record …. only beating out Cleveland. I believe Sacramento will climb out of the Western cellar.

    So what does the draft look like … can the Raptors draft a big man … again ..??

    • Wulfers

      you dont want us to draft a big man. we want kyrie irving or perry jones.

  • onemanweave

    yes

  • onemanweave

    We

  • onemanweave

    CAN!

  • Mike

    Dre is under the bus is hilarious…. The guy put the ball on the floor tonight and was posting up. Only had a few long range shots and 3’s yet not a positive comment. DeRozan was awful and got lite up don’t believe me look at Joe’s stat line. Smith was eating Amir and Davis all game and Hortford was realitively quite but again who cares right… Only player on the team who played well was Amir and that was on the offensive end only.

    • cb

      fan boy.

    • Balls of Steel

      You can’t get lit up when you’re at the bench and would only come in if Horford gets a breather from Pachulia.

    • Spanish_eddie

      my friend…bargnani is in his 5th season. Demar and Ed have far fewer poor efforts than Andrea and they’re in their 2nd and 1st seasons respectively. the point is, his ‘potential’ is still just that…If he plays 10 years his career is half over and he just isn’t learning how to play basketball. what makes you think next year’s the year that the light will switch on.

      sticking up for bargnani and then saying amir only played good on offence is the stupidest way you could have ended that post.

  • Jonathan

    Yea… Mike you are insane, bargs effort just wasn’t there.. like every other night lately.. you simply can’t argue with that and that’s all the fans are looking for nowadays.. just show us that you care bargs.. hustle, fall on the floor in an effort play, knock someone on the ground boxing out, put in elbow in someones chest grabbing a board, all we ask is to make it look like you care and try even if you dont because the hate isn’t going to stop unless we see you try and everyone else even the supporters, announcers/commentators, and FINALLY coach (benching him significantly last night) are realizing you just don’t put in the effort

    • Nilanka15

      I would assume (based on the first 50 games of this season where Bargnani didn’t put in a defensive/rebounding effort, but was still rewarded plenty of minutes) that Triano was under Colangelo’s instruction to make sure Bargnani was given plenty of opportunity to shine.

      Given the recent reduction in Bargnani’s minutes, I can only come to 2 logical conclusions:

      1. Bargnani is indeed injured, and is given reduced minutes in an attempt to recover.

      or

      2. Colangelo has FINALLY granted Triano permission to manage Bargnani’s minutes in any way he sees fit, thus potentially indicating that Colangelo is all but finished with his Bargnani experiment (again I say “FINALLY”).

      I seriously hope it’s the latter…

      • Jonathan

        This does make sense Nilanka…

        Something that should have been done a long time ago because really what is the message you are now sending bargs?

        Bargs thinking process: I have been doing what I thought was good all season long, doing my best to score points, now recently I am being told that what I have done for the first 50 games is no good and I have no effort on D and grabbing boards so now I am being benched for my minutes, so why now? Why all of a sudden is my playing technique so wrong? Why wasn’t I told this or reprimanded for my actions on the court earlier?

        Trianos 2 options of thinking process:

        1. Oh crap, I look like an idiot sending bargs out there for 35/40 mins a game because now that he’s not scoring he is simply a pylon watching the game.

        2. Colangelo has FINALLY let me do what I want with my players so I am finally going to give bargs what he deserves!

        No matter what actually has happened here it is still wrong. As much as I dislike bargs effort every night it is very unfair for him.

        If he would have been given the message early on in the season and he was still acting like this after 50 games then the benching is much more justified.

        Now bargs has to deal with the strong hate for him from fans, commentators and maybe coach?

        Poor bargs? or poor raptors?

        both maybe?

        I think its a combination of bad decisions that have led to a bad atmosphere with the team and its fans.

        In summary of everything, no one wants to watch your team go on the court night in and night out and watch your supposed star player give 60% effort…

        Amir gives 100% effort every freaking night and it pays off, now if only bargs will receive the message (hopefully from his continued drop in minutes) and step up and bring to the table the kind of effort and intensity this team needs from its leader!

        If this message is not received, digested, and acted upon by bargs by the end of the season, everyone, and dear god we hope colangelo included, knows what must be done this off-season.

        • Nilanka15

          I guess I could’ve included a 3rd conclusion, that Triano was scared he’d suffer the same fate as Sam Mitchell, who was pretty much fired for giving Bargnani some much-needed tough love.

        • Theswirsky

          ‘If he would have been given the message early on in the season and he was still acting like this after 50 games then the benching is much more justified.’

          Really after 3 straight losing season he didn’t get the message that effort is important…. after 4.5 years he doesn’t realize he needs to play hard night in and night out at the NBA level. That defense and rebound are just as important as scoring. I guess its possible he never grasped that… but then I’d chalk him up to a complete moron, which ofcourse would explain why he does what he does (or doesn’t do what he needs to do) and further justifies the need to reduce his minutes, bench him or ship him to the highest bidder.

          I mean really (and I mean no disrespect to either of these guys) but neither Evans or Amir are gonna win any sort of MENSA award, but it never took them long to realize the importance of effort…. even without talent.

          • Jonathan

            Sadly I was just trying to come up with some type of reasoning to justify bargs actions. I agree it makes absolutely no sense. It is unjustifiable that he should ever of made the NBA with the lack of effort he brings to a game. Pretty much he is proving that if you are 7 feet tall and have a semi-good jumper you can make the NBA no matter how uncoordinated or unmotivated you are in every other aspect of the game.

            And it is totally true when bargs is on the floor I do the exact same thing watch him and just get sad… because you know he is hurting the team so much with his lack of effort.

            Amir Johnson is my hero. He is my favourite player on the team and plays every game with 100% effort and leaves it all on the floor every night even if he doesn’t have 100% skill as you said.

  • Spanish_eddie

    I’ve got to the point where when Andrea’s on the floor I don’t enjoy the game. I don’t follow the ball. I just watch him with a tense feeling in my chest. I’m not saying that for comedic value. I realize that’s excessive but it’s literally got to that point for me. I, personally, think he is an tremendous shooter (growing up a larry bird fan i don’t remember bird being as pretty a shooter as andrea) but an awful basketball player. I do believe alot of it is will and determination, but another part of it is that his body and skill set don’t match. I don’t think i’m going out on a limb in saying that he’ll never win. Anywhere.