This is the kind of postgame that writes itself. You look at what happened on this Sunday afternoon, and you see all the early season themes playing out perfectly:

– a close hard-fought loss (now 1-6)
– questionable minute allocation (Ed Davis)
– questionable officiating
– Andrea Bargnani bringing his shooting in-line with the rest of his (non-existent) game

Why are we losing all these close games? The unpopular two-guard lineup featuring Kyle Lowry and Jose Calderon? Not playing Jonas Valunciunas in crunch time? Let’s talk about the coach, Dwane Casey, then. Before we jump all over the guy, let’s take a step back here.

Dwane Casey is the third coach in Bryan Colangelo’s tenure. Granted, Sam Mitchell was not hired on his watch, and sure enough Smitch’s treatment of Bargnani got him canned after a horrible 8-9 start. Colangelo then hired Jay Triano, who ended up being a combination of a PR move and a coach that Colangelo could “influence”. When that didn’t work, he cut his losses and hired Dwane Casey, who was supposed to help this team become better defensively, and he did just that.

Regardless of what you want to think of him, he is Colangelo’s third coach, second of his choosing. The players on the floor, have been under his control for over 6 years now. So he’s cooked both ways. If the coach is bad and the players are good, that’s on him. If the coach is good but the players are weak, thatès on him too. If both are bad…

Now, the real question is how much someone like Andrea Bargnani should be playing. What his role on this team should be, if any. Is Dwane Casey being put under some sort of pressure to play Il Mago? Or is it that this team just doesn’t have enough offensive talent to overcome his absence?

The bigger question should be the way certain players get babied in this organization. Seeing Tony Parker calmly rip through the Raptors defence today hearkens one back to the days when Gregg Popovich would rip into a younger Parker for things the casual fan wouldn ‘t even recognize. Mistakes that were probably far less egregious and common then Mr. Bargnani commits.

But really, what choice does Casey have? You have Kyle Lowry, who is probably the best we have, but hasn’t averaged more than 15 points in his career, and with low percentages. And DeMar DeRozan, who is still a one-dimensional scorer who has not shown the ability to score in the most important moments. With pretty much nothing to offer at the small forward position, he (Casey) feels compelled to have a major defensive liability like Calderon on the floor. The real problem with this small lineup isn’t having Calderon out there. It’s having Bargnani on as your 5. One of the worst rebounding and defensively stupid, yes stupid is the perfect word, “centers” to have ever graced an NBA court.

Even on a day where Ed Davis pretty much hustles his way into being noticed, the lack of scoring talent on the floor forced Casey to bring Bargnani back. For me, and all the Raptor fans out there, we don”t care. The accountability part is way more important for an organization that’s trying to create a “winning culture”. It’s almost never happened. Maybe his minutes get reduced, he gets taken out a little earlier and he returns a tad later than normal. But a complete benching, nope. That’s just too bad.

Ed Davis has done all the necessary work. He clearly put on some muscle and he has been rebounding at an elite level this year. Look at his rebounds per 48 minutes:

Ed Davis can rebound

Even Reggie Evens is getting more love than Ed Davis. The rest of the guys on the list are quality players who are garnering major minutes. Free Ed Davis, seriously. His only flaw is that he happens to play the same position as Andrea Bargnani. This team will win more games if you switch his minutes with Bargnani. Anyone with some knowledge of the game will agree to this. The general manager of this team doesn’t.

Officiating in this league has always been questionable, because any kind of contact can be called. This is why NCAA is more much more enjoyable. Fouls are fouls. Hacks to the arms, hard contact. Being a non-elite team with no real superstars, it’s been a rough ride for the Raptors, but this year does actually seem weird. There is no conspiracy against Toronto, or Canada. When this team will play mediocre to bad teams at the ACC, the calls will be pro-Raptor but noone will remember that. The feeling is that they are letting more stuff go, so perhaps it’s a matter of getting used to it.

So don’t blame the coach in a game like this, because his hands are tied with the lack of talent on this team. If you do want to blame him, remember that not all on-court decisions are his decisions, that the same GM who hired him exerts a lot of influence. Even if he truly is a bad coach who could be getting more out of this team, how many coaches does a GM get to have? Not 5, not 6, not 7?

On the bright side…

This team is definitely better than it’s record suggests. They are still a fringe playoff team in this weak Eastern conference. Kyle Lowry may have come back early to right the ship, because he doesn’t look like he’s as quick or aggressive as he was to start the season. He’s the most important player on this team. Terrence Ross has NBA talent but is an afterthought right now.

And Val. How can you not cheer for this kid? He had a an eye-opening game against a re-energized Tim Duncan. The jumper, the fearlessness going to the basket. He’s doing this while being repeatedly being hung out to dry by Bargnani, who rarely helps or comes into rebound. In a weird kind of way, having Bargnani around is like throwing the kid to the wolves. If that kid survives, you’ve got something special. The hope is that he doesn’t get hurt dealing with two bigs on his own. He almost busted his elbow today trying to fight for a ball near the basket.

Eventually Jonas becomes a dependable 15 pts, Lowry looks like he’ll give you 20 and Demar 20 as well. Do we really need to add another 20 points a game from a player who is a liability in almost every other facet of the game?

Even if we do, I’d rather lose with players who give a damn.

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  • Ice2000

    Usually pretty good articles on this site. This was not one of them. Anyone knows the Raptors would win more if Ed Davis played  35 minutes a game and Bargnani played 13 minutes. Really? I did not know this. I guess because of my lack of knowledge of the game. I do know that the Raptors would be god awful to watch without Bargnani.

    I did watch the game today and I was not unhappy about Barganni’s shots. They were not going in, but sometimes that happens. Derozan cannot do it all on his own and Lowry is not nearly as good as you suggest. Sorry but Bargnani is the best scorer we have.

    Now I could dump all over you and write something like anyone knows the people on this site are not professional writers and we really should not consider them as knowledgeable as sports writers or really expect much in a write up.  That would not be fair though. There is a lot of great stuff on this site and by you as well. Perhaps today was just a bad day.

    It is frustrating being a Raptors fan but write like a writer not a fan who is still in high school. I can ignore all of those postings, but I hope to keep looking forward to the articles written on this site.

    • Nilanka15

      “I do know that the Raptors would be god awful to watch without Bargnani.”

      For a player who averages 35 minutes, and 17 points on 17 shots (on 39% shooting), one could easily say, “I do know that the Raptors would be god awful to watch WITH Bargnani.”

      It may not be a foregone conclusion that the Davis experiment would indeed work, but perhaps the writer (who is a volunteer, not a professional writer, by the way….) is merely suggesting that with a 3-11 record, there is nothing to lose by starting Davis. 

      In other words, what are we so desperately holding onto by maintaining Bargnani in the starting lineup?  It certainly isn’t winning basketball.

      Now before the Bargnani-backers rip my head off, let me point out that I’m not blaming Bargnani for our troubles.  There’s plenty of blame to go around.  This post is simply a suggestion specifically regarding the starting lineup.


        “what are we so desperately holding onto by maintaining Bargnani in the starting lineup”

        At this rate, we’ll be able to hold onto our draft pick next year!

      • voy

        if thats what the writer wanted to suggest then thats what he should have wrote.  just because he is a volunteer doesn’t mean he automatically wants to join the posse of hotheads… unless of course he aspires to become the RR’s version of bob mccown. 

        its not a bad suggestion to write like a writer and not a highscool fan.

        i like the site.  i like a-dub.  however the RR is infinately better when it doesn’t try to appeal to the alarmists who think bc is part of the illiminati or that the team will be better if we bring back vince.

        • Nilanka15

          It’s an opinion piece.  Nothing more, nothing less.

      • howlonghowlong

        I agree.  I already wrote this in a different post but AB should be coming off the bench for scoring punch from your bigs.  Not sure if ED is the answer but it’s time to experiment.  The 7 year experiment with AB has not worked out.  To the point above, AB is not “the” reason we’re 3-11.

        Personally, I would much rather watch a 3-11 team that plays top 10 defense and puts their heart out every game, than a 3-11 team that crosses their fingers that players make shots.  After 14 games our best defensive players (> 140 min played) – Player (Defensive rating) as per Basketball reference.

        1.  ED  (101)
        1.  KL  (101)
        3.  AJ  (103)
        4.  TR  (104)
        4.  DM (105)
        4.  JV  (105)

        In case you’re wondering DD/AB are both at (108) … only JC and LK are worse (109 and 110 respectively).  Granted these numbers are not a true representation of defensive rating since both TR/ED are often playing against other teams’ bench.  That said, ED would not be the defensive liability that AB is.  One would also question if TR should be getting more playing time (away from DD/JC).

        I can’t even cheer tanking because unless we end up with top 3 pick … we don’t get anything from a losing season.  This a bad time to be a raps fan.  I feel bad, yet excited, for the next GM that’s going to try to clean up this mess.

        • sleepz

          Don’t worry, Stepanaski already has a handle on what his job will be like.

    • j bean

      You must like losing if you like watching Bargnani. He missed 17 shots yesterday but you still call him their best shooter. Their best shooter is scoring less points per game than DeMar DeRozan and there is only one person with a worse shooting percentage in the top 60 scorers. In the league Bargnani is 31st in scoring averaging 17.6 per game and in the top sixty only his countryman Galinari has a worse scoring percentage. In fact Bargnani has missed more shots than Lowry and Calderon combined. So tell us what is it about AB that leads you to believe he is their best scorer.
      It’s easy to criticize an article when you offer nothing to back it up. 

      • what the

        Cesco never mension those stats

    • cesco

      Anyone knows the Raptors would win more if Ed Davis played  35 minutes a game and Bargnani played 13 minutes. Really? I did not know this.    

      than I guess you’re a dumbass, and probably italian. Not that the two are mutually exclusive. 

    • hateslosing

      Rebounds and defense win games. Period. If you have more posessions than the other team by grapping offensive boards, you both add to your oppurtunity to score and take away the other teams. If you make the other team score less points by playing good defense, it means you have to score less in order to win. Rebounding and defense don’t get “cold” like shooting, anyone can do it if they just hustle so as long as you bring consistant effort you will play consistently on that end. Good teams score lots of points, great teams play defense and rebound.

      In short, Ed Davis there is a very strong argument for Ed Davis being better for the team than Bargs. His rebounding alone gives this team another dimension and when you pair him with other active guys like Jonas and Amir it’s hard for the other team to deal with it. Long term, I would say that a rebounder of Ed Davis’ caliber will be one of the most important players on this team and once he gets his man muscles (he’s only 23) he is going to be a force in the post.

      • pran

        rap of the day? I think so.

      • Theswirsky

        “If you have more posessions than the other team by grapping offensive boards, you both add to your oppurtunity to score and take away the other teams. If you make the other team score less points by playing good defense, it means you have to score less in order to win. Rebounding and defense don’t get “cold” like shooting, anyone can do it if they just hustle so as long as you bring consistant effort you will play consistently on that end. Good teams score lots of points, great teams play defense and rebound.”

        a great simple lesson in fundament basketball. 

        Unfortunately it will go unheard or rejected because so many have been indoctrinated in the importance of scoring points.  This is the result of this teams management and highlight reel clips.

      • FLUXLAND


        Please escort this man, he’s making too much sense.


      • ghost

        So a starting line-up of KL, DD, DM, ED, JV. That’s a front court that couldn’t score if it’s life depended on it. And defensively, it’s nothing special either. We would probably be down by 15 points at the end of every 1st quarter. Does anybody remember last year…just how bad we are offensively without Bargnani. Like it or not, he’s the most versatile, even if inefficent, scorer on the Raptors and I’m not even a Bargnani fan.

        • The Truth

           Does anyone remember this year…just how bad we are offensively with Bargnani?

        • Nilanka15

          Last year, we didn’t have a scoring PG in Lowry and we also didn’t have a DeRozan capable of creating his own shot in isolation like he can today. 

          Further to that, Davis didn’t have an improved mid-range jumper last year, and Valanciunas is already better offensively than any of our centres from a year ago (Amir, Gray or Magloire).

          Apples and oranges, my friend.

    • Mossnoah

      This article was spot on. Obviously, Bargnani missed some shots that he would normally take, but people like you are the problem. Should he even be on the court to take the shots is the question.

      And I totally agree with the comment about ED and I have been saying it for years. Ed can be a better all around player than bargnani if he got the minutes and even half the attention that bargnani does.

      That’s the point of the article…we put too much faith in losers and then tell ourselves it was ok because if he would have went 5-19 instead of 2-19 then we would have won.

      And don’t knock the site because you have some weird fixation with Bargnani. Read the article and really try to understand what it means. You completely missed the point honestly you sound like a casual fan (not that there’s anything wrong with that but I would give “professional” writers who study the team the benefit of the doubt).

      free ed

  • TheR3dMenace

    The close losses, the refs, the frustrating play of our “Star”…this season of heartbreak ends with the raps out of the playoffs. But we won’t fall ass-backwards into our protected 1,2, or 3. Nope. Instead we’ll get to watch Sam Presti draft another Hall of Famer with our #5 pick or something.

  • Mo

    7 years into this experiment, we know what Andrea Bargnani is, an enigma. 

    Is he as bad as he was yesterday going 2-19? The optimistic fans say no.

    Is he as good as he was scoring 34 points with ease? The pessimistic fans say no. 

    Reality is he isn’t the middle, he oscillates between the two between games and sometimeseven between quarters. 

    Truth is Bargnani is taking too much heat and undeservedly so. He’s not the only one at blame for this loss but the worst performing Raptor tends to take the majority share of it over the years (It used to be T.J Ford, then Calderon, then Hedo, back to Calderon, and now Bargnani)

    To me the real person at blame is the coach, one who preaches defense and accountability with his supposedly no nonsense approach to the game. One whom gave significant minutes to James Johnson, Anderson, Gray, Uzoh because they grinded and played hard on D is now playing a turnstile at the 2 (Calderon) and a 7 foot version of Nick Young yesterday. It takes more to win than having talented young players (ask Sacramento/Detroit/Washington/Golden State), we need to build a winning culture first then look to add talent. When that happens, we will retain our restricted free agents easier and draw more talent. If the Vancouv…Memphis Grizzlies can do it, so can the Raptors.

    • BCBargnaniCaseyGots2Go!!!

      To institute true culture change (not just a pr spin on one) one must dig out the old roots (BC & company) and plant new roots (new Pres/GM/Coach/etc) as by trimming the hedges on the bush (new coach, front office hires, annual roster overhaul of supporting role players, AB & Jose remain) just gives a new appearance to the very same old bush……

      BC claims culture change with Casey then brings in 9 new players in the off season that weren’t apart of that so called culture change while AB (the team’s #1 building block) shows up to training camp out of shape for the start of his 7th season……..

      If Casey calls this team young again: the Raptors are the 11th youngest team roster-wise in the NBA and OKC is younger than them roster-wise as well as owning the rights to the Raptors 2013 daft pick (top 3 protected).

      What was the Triano era all about again?

    • The Rub

       Andrea Bargnani is a poor man’s Tony Romo

    • Pesterm1

       You dont get  it… I dont give a shit about the loss. bargnani doesnt try hard enough, he is way to lazy and laid back. that And1 play her had, Jonas V is all fired up turns to bargnani who is expressionless. like GTFO of here. If you cant be excited about an and1 play in crunch time BEAT IT!!!

      You cant control losses but you can certainly control your effort. this is PRO sports… Bargnani players 35 mins. for those 35 minutes you better give every ounce of effort you can.

      • tweed8

        Agreed! Last season AB looked like he was finally changing his mentally, his physical presence was entirely different. He looked like a guy jacked on caffeine and wanting to run teams over. I remember games where he’d back a guy down with force and that twitchy leg move and I would think, who the hell is this guy and what did he do with Bargnani? … Now, I am thinking where is that guy?! This man needs to find some passion.

  • BCBargnaniCaseyGots2Go!!!

    Don’t blame the coach….shiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiit (Clay Davis voice)

    Blame the GM/Pres and his front office nut huggers, blame Casey and  blame AB!!

    This team is its record (3-11)- point blank!!

    Casey is another BC yes man appointed to baby AB (evident by keeping 3 of Jay’s assistant coaches on his staff and saying that his regime is a continuation of Jay’s era) yet Jay has left the franchise a year afterwards for Portland- even Jay knows that the Raptors ship is sinking fast under BC Titanic style.

    In the post game presser Casey said that AB was the team’s top scorer but AB is currently 3rd behind DD (18.7), Lowry (18.3) then AB (17.6).

    In the post game presser Casey said that AB was the top 3pt shooter on the team but stats say Jose (45.5%), Lowry (40.9%) then AB (33.8%).

    As well, AB (with all of his minutes played 34.9 per game) is the team’s 6th leading rebounder Val (6.1), Lowry (5.9)  AJohnson (5.40) Davis (5.10) DD (4.90) then AB (4.70).

    Casey went from requesting 2 rebounds per Q from AB to this season’s just box out plea- how low do we have to lower the bar to avoid the reality of AB’s shortcomings?

    I’ll take a RAnderson or Novak over a glorified coddled fake franchise 7 ft Kapono type of player all day everyday.

    Casey said that he will ride with AB come hell and highwater- what has AB done to deserve and/or earn this type of respect from Casey especially when AB has never made a game winning shot nor lead a winning Raptors team post CB not to mention his half ass inconsistent career efforts?

    Fyi The NCAA is full of bullchit foul calls and refs manipulating games.

    • Dan

       Don’t forget Byron Mullens. He doesn’t have Andrea’s ball handling but he is the same size and has the same shooting range plus more rebounding. His fg% is terrible too. He was the 24th pick in his draft compared to #1 and he has a better per and costs a lot less then Andrea.

    • sleepz

      I did take exception to a few of the things Casey said in postgame as well most notably:

      “Eds minutes were extended tonight”.
      They might have been coach but playing a guy with 15-14 only 21 minutes is so impressive you might want to extend them some more during the game no? Why does he even have a specific amount of minutes pre-determined? Don’t you play guys more or less mintues depending on how the game unfolds?

      “Andrea had 34 points the last game and he’s our guy so we went back to him”.
       Don’t use the previous game as a barometer for the next game coach or if you do then I guess it is fair for us to assume that both JV and Ed will have “extended minutes” next game considering their play against the Spurs yesterday.
      If I see Ed hugging the bench next game and JV not getting into the game in the 4th it will indicate the continued lack of accountability in the Colangelo era.

      Someone needs to ask this Casey where has the defence gone? It was your platform last year and now it is an afterthought. Why the sacrificing of defence for offence? It was a terrible philosophy shift and I’m certain where it came from. Collars just can’t help himself.

  • NyAlesund

    Ther are a lot of problems in this organization.

    First Casey. I don’t know if he free to work or BC has an “influence” on him. A coach has to read the game and act consequently. Yesterday, Ed Davis was on fire, despite two stupid miskakes on Parker, but his intensity, points, rebs were important, probably could be decisive.

    AB was in a night in which no one easy shot for him pays dividend and considering what Davis was doing at the same time, the right thing to do would have been bench him. Yes, I understand the ability of AB to stretch the floor, to score in different ways but yesterday even if he would have shot 30 times barely he had scored a couple of them.

    In addition, I can’t understand why Casey is not punishing the player when committing mistakes. Why I can see Pop bench the All Of Famers and him not, is a misterious for me. Lack of personality, lack of gut, or worst he can’t do this?


    This ream is bad assembled. Lowry is a combo guard not able to “see” and facilitate the teammates like a real point guard, Calderon is the right guy but unfortunately he is suffering everytime on D, Bargnani is the most talented player offensively with the big issue defensively and DeRozan is not ready to be a go-to-guy and perhaps never. I don’t want to talk about the Fields’ contract……..Jesus…..

    Despite all, we lost several game in crunch situations, yesterday with 5/33 from AB/JC we had plenty of occasions to win against the Spurs.

    BC. This man is probably the worst GM in the league. I understand the fact that Toronto is not the first ideal place to play for a FA but, you can build a decent team despite all. In these 3/4 years I saw many incomprehensible choices…. The list is very long.

    For me the only thing to do right now, is to be tough to all of players. Bargnani plays bad, bench, DD doesn’t do the right thing, bench, Lowry makes a nonsense shot, bench, ED plays well, on the court……………..Nobody has to think, even for a single second, to be untouchable. No contract or status has to influence the Casey’s choices.

    Yea, I know we can risk other painful lost but this for me is the way to grow, even accepting another season without po.

  • KobeToronto

    Bargnani played well defensively and was far better than JV against Duncan and cutting off Parker on the pick and roll. He had a nightmare game in terms of shooting but had 8 rebounds in his time on court. He takes so much heat from the fans it’s hard to believe that he cAn play at all. He’d be better off elsewhere so he could burn the Raps and their fans by being used properly

    • Canadian Paul

      7 years in and you’re still delusional. Let me guess. Your real name is Rocco, Massimo or Giancarlo.

    • The Truth

      “He’d be better off elsewhere so he could burn the Raps and their fans by being used properly”

      Yeah, by coming off the bench where he belongs.

      • Nilanka15

        Regarding the quote, yet another sickening example of someone putting Bargnani’s interests ahead of the Raptors’.

      • Destro

        As a Raptor fan i dread the 7 foot jumpshooter shooting 36% who dont rebound or D facing us…..

        • The Truth

           I think there is a place for him in the league, but yeah the way he is playing at the moment there is no way he is starting let alone your #1 option on any other team but this one.

    • what the

      so now AB13 is not being use properly next you’ll be blaming rain fanboy

    • Destro

      Unfortunately for you and HIS fans you’d never see him command 35 mins a night nor would you see him in the last 5 MINS of a close game….No other organization in the league would give him a leash such as this…the notion he’d flourish eslewhere is pure laughter….Any other NBA team he wouldnt have been allowed to take 19 shots yesterday,he wouldnt have played in OT…

    • Trruth

      get some papers you lousy wop.

  • footie

     ” I’d rather lose with players who give a damn.” 

    haters they can just hate…or you just don’t watch any match.
    I hope for his own good he leaves , he might find a team, a coach and some real support maybe from day one.

    Here with or without him nothing is going to change.

    • Destro

      What coach do you think would allow him to shoot 11 % and be on the floor in clutch situations…..Pop ? Carlisle ? What good NBA teams are going to sit there bigs for a 7 footer who shoots a bad % and doesnt rebound/defend ?

      Yall fans are fcukn delusional…

      • RaptorFan


        I’m just confused as to why Dwane would put his career into jeopardy waiting for Andrea to turn into Dirk….. doesnt he realize that the fat lady has begun singing on BC’s tenure here??  Doesnt he know that the next GM will probably get rid of Andrea and Jose (if he’s not already gone by the trade deadline)?? 

        Dwane Casey lost all credibility when he said that he will ride with Andrea “come hell or high water”…..We fans don’t even know what we’re gonna get from Andrea and he’s been here for what 7 seasons??…..  Dwane knows Andrea for what…..just over a year – and he’s ready to be shipped out of town with BC and AB….. what a silly puppet!!

        • sleepz

          You guys awaiting BC’s departure might be disapointed.

          As team president you think he’s just going to allow himself to be fired by the Raps organization? There will be no job for him in the league afterwards.

          As Team President he will most likely pass along GM duties to his lacky Stepanaski so he can continue to pull the strings upstairs without the blame that goes along with it.

          Do I want it going down like that? Of course not.

          Is this a distinct possibility? You better believe it.

          • RaptorFan

            I’ll believe it when i see it happen!…..right now i’m just dreaming of the day when our players get rewarded for on court performance not because he’s the first italian to go #1 in the nba draft……

            MLSE would be ABSOLUTELY DUMB to retain BC….. sports should be about results…..The Raptors are not the Maple Leafs and i doubt Rogers or Bell will have the patience for a losing pile of dump, when the possibilities are endless to make tons of $$$ and marketing opportunites from an excited fanbase

    • pran

      stick with footie.

      • footie

         stick with hockey .

  • Nilanka15

    I’m sure we’d all kill for an 8-9 record right now, lol.

    • unknown guest

      Sad but true.

  • Nilanka15

    Aside from Jonas, the only obvious positive so far this season is the lack of quitters in this group.  With one demoralizing loss after another, you would think players slowly start taking plays off, tuning out coach’s instructions, or give up entirely.  Yet this team continues to fight until the final buzzer.  Small solace in an otherwise miserable season.

    • cesco

      You are absolutely right . The players know they have played more or less even with every team except OKC . I cannot see them giving up . Perhaps Field and/or Anderson coming back may just be enough ( assuming no major injuries in the meantime ) to tip the scale over in the last few minutes and get them playing 50/50 won/lost games . BTW , Davis deserve more playing time , take it from Andrea and see what happens . Chances are that Casey has already planned that .

      • what the

        Wow this coming from Cesco ,’take playing time from our franchise player our best player who spread the floor. Cesco are you sure?

        • Francesco

          May be an impostor.

    • Hound

      +1 well said. But things will change if the losing continues

  • Dan

    The GM needs to go. They also need to get rid of last bits of the old Roster. Jose is a nice player but he is way to soft. He had two turnovers on inbound plays and has given up completely this year on driving to the basket. Everything is long twos and threes. If Demar is going to be your 4th or 5th option he’s not bad. If he is one of your first options your team will not be very good. Him and Andrea are the same player. Volume scorers who have a good game every once in a while if their shot is falling and offer little else. Yes Demar had 29 but it took him 28 shots to get it. He becomes a lot less effective the further out he gets the ball. We have a guard who plays better 15 feet and in and PF who plays like a guard. Both of which are terrible on D. Then you have Jose becoming an undersized two every fourth quarter who is worst on the team for defense. You can’t outscore a team by hoping their shots don’t fall. You need to defend them. That’s why they keep losing in the 4th. The best help defender is a rookie and the best on the ball defender likes to gamble for steals and try to make big plays instead of smart ones. They were better off resigning barbosa. He at least drives to the basket and would be less predictable to guard the Jose.

  • aaron

    Why would you trade andrea now?  His value is at its lowest its been in 3 years.  The raps don’t stink just because of him.  The raps could easily be 500 with a few calls and hitting a couple shots.  The biggest weakness is small forward.  If we had someone who scored 12 points and got 7 rebounds from that position we would have won another 3-5 games.  
         Andrea may be the most frustrating player but at Detroit the raps would have lost by 20 point if it wasn’t for him.  ANdrea needs to go to the big man school and spend time just working on his post up game. 
          Basketball is a team game accept on raptors republic where its an  emotional rollercoaster after every game.  Lets just tank and get a top three player.  Maybe the raps can lose the most close games ever in the history of the NBA.  Lets hope that maybe Shabazz comes too toronto!

    • Destro

      I think it begins and ends with Bargnoodle….Its easy to just delfect the blame elsewhere but hes expected to be one of ur top 2 players and hes playing far below expectation and some nights the effort isnt even there….Sorry the target is exactly where it needs to be (#7)

      Do you blame Jodie Meeks and Steve Blake for the Lakers struggles or do you blame Kobe or Dwight when they underperform…You have to focus on the best players not playing well when these struggles persist….If Bargnani is putting up 20/10 on 55% you can then look at John Lucas or Landry Fields or Kleiza but that is not the case…Hes been awful this year,he regressing it NEEDS TO BE THE FOCUS…

      • unknown guest

        Lakers are an apt team here. Do you blame the player(s)? The coach(es)? Or the GM who put the team together?

        • Destro

          Honestly Casey is as much to blame for this 3-11 and losing all of these close games as anyone….Its one thing to blame certain players not getting it done,but whos the fool allowing it to happen ?

  • Stince99

    Gotta say, this is one of the most level-headed, rational, and more importantly dead-on correct posts I’ve seen among the collective mania of Raps fans.

    You can blame the coach all you like because hindsight and imaginary scenarios are 20/20, but Casey’s job is to win games right now. Going into the season that’s what the fans expected and now that he’s managing the club based on that imperative, the fans have turned on him simply because the results haven’t been there. Folks need to remember that since the day he was hired Casey has stated that Bargs is ‘the guy’ on the team, that’s he’s a Nowitzki-lite, etc. He’s going to get every opportunity to succeed or fail this year because if the team wants to win now, they (unfortunately) need him.

    No amount of coaching is going to fix the fact that this team’s roster is incredibly flawed.

  • arsenalist

    Mitchell was Colangelo’s “choosing” as well.  He signed him to a contract extension (after he won COTY).

    • unknown guest

      He was *forced* to re-sign him. Not re-signing Sam would after winning COTY would have been a PR nightmare.

  • pran

    ed’s rebound rate/48 compared to the minutes he gets is simply astonishing, great find. 

  • Daniel

    Had the writers had any understanding of basketball the readers would not have had the collective meltdown happening now. The entire media, mainstream and alternative, misdiagnosed our problems thus the patient suffers from mistreatment.
    Colangelo wanted to speed-up the tempo in order to make the product more palatable to the casual fans going to the games. He payed lip service to the defensive focus implemented by Casey however he wanted offense to be the star and not the defense. Thus he acquired another pure scorer in Lowry, adding to the other 2 pure scorers we have had in the team. To add insult to injury, all 3 scorers play in the first unit. We have a PG who does’t know how to pass (no double-doubles this season), an SG who doesn’t know how to shoot (to his credit, he shows an understanding of the need to become a multi-dimensional player however he doesn’t have the skillset to match his desire), and a 7 footer who doesn’t rebound and shooting the worst of his career. The second unit beat consistently the first unit during the pre-season however Casey found excuses to call it an anomaly and not a trend. 
    In additon, Casey, who I like, should never be more than a first assistant in charge with the defensive schemes. He’s too stubborn to do what’s needed tactically during the game. He’s been dealt a really bad hand however so many games decided by a few points is an indictment on the coach.
    The only bright spot compared with the expctations is Jonas. His foul rate and his offense are better than what I expected out of him. His 1-on-1 defense sucks however he has great help instincts and never gives up on the defensive play.
    Bottom line is we made the roster worse than last year however the management created the expectation of play-offs. Our age is indicative of a developmental team with huge holes in terms of skillsets. The players want desperately to win to fulfill the “organizational mandate” and in the process they are destroying their self-confidence by playing to their weaknesses instead of their strengths. 
    The solutions are not simple given the handcuffing job done by Colangelo however priority number one is getting rid of the entire management team. I prefer as coach a young and coming, innovative guy like Vogel or Spoelstra with experienced assistants next to him. Of course it’s very hard to find these gems so I don’ have much hope. The roster is fundamentally flawed and there is no easy solution to fixing it given the difficuly of attracting quality free agents and the lack of draft picks.
    At some point, after the the play-offs will be but a dream, this roster will perform much better. This has been my fear every season in the last 3: the foolishness of meaningless wins creating a powerful impresion on the management and fans and drawing the wrong conclusions out of it.

    • what the

      d if the Raptors get rid of Pound of Crack,Dribbles and AB13 you would see a culture change .

  • IROR

    Before I post…let me say I love Calderon and am a Bargnani hopeful.  But this is a better team without them.  Maybe a top 8 defensive team.  When Calderon is on the floor, despite his enthusiasm, he is an open door for his man to drive through.  This problem is exacerbated by Bargnani, who may be the worst help defender in the league.  Bargnani actually is so unaware he looks like Hoffa when if comes to helping.

    Take these two out of the equation, yes we likely struggle on offense. But on D, the days of EVERY SINGLE opposing PG strolling into the paint at will; the days of mediocre swingmen left open for 3s by help defenders trying to save calderon and Bargnani’s ass–will be over.   I’d rather see that and go back to the f-ing lottery and give our pick away than keep stroking a rabbit’s foot hoping bargnani just ‘gets it’ one day.  In BC’s words, it’s time to accelerate the building process..the best way to do that might be to trade bargnani, or at least cut his minutes and give someone else a shot.

    Just opinion here.  But I would like to see a Bargnani for Pau Gasol trade go down.  Looks like a solid basketball trade for both teams to me.  Bargnani would be sick with D’antoni and D12, and Gasol would bring some serious skill and pedigree to this young lineup.  Maybe then we’d win some of these close ones…

    sorry for the rant, just a frustrated Raps fan here.  I’m sure a few ppl are with me in this

  • Theswirsky

    Welcome to the special education class that is the Toronto Raptors. Everyone else learns from it except those in the classroom.

    Why? Because they are fucking retarded.

  • Gregast

    We’ve discovered how to enjoy the Raptors. It took a few weeks of gut wrenching screaming at the TV screen until my better half ( who loves the Raps more than I) suggested I need to try to not care about the score. “Treat  it like your golf score” she suggested “Just enjoy the good shots and the flow of the game.” So I have been doing just that, I mean, let’s face facts – the Raptors are not going to win the Larry O’Brien trophy in 2013, right?

    Now I watch Jonas with his great attitude and his selfless play. There isn’t a player on the team ( maybe Landry Fields ) who can’t learn about attitude from the young center. Wow!

    Now I watch Kyle Lowry and his intense drive. And I note that he will share the ball if his team mate works hard to get positioned for his pass. But if the team mate doesn’t work then he gets ignored – good strategy for the long term there.

    Now I watch DDR and see him learn to deal with the hacking and the contact and I see him getting stronger physically and mentally and we both know he can become like a Kobe Bryant if he wants to.

    We both think Dwane is the smartest guy on the floor and on top of that we know that he has access to more information than we do – so his decisions should not be questioned. Think Greg Popovich and then treat Dwane that way too.

    So, Raptors Republic, there you have it. A recipe from Vancouver Island on how to survive 2013 as a Raptor fan. No charge for this service except we’d like you to try to be civil with each other when you post on RR.


  • 2damkule

    it’s early, and i hate overreacting, or creating a narrative that complies with a pre-conceived notion.  that being said…

     – at a certain point, ‘struggling’ turns into a ‘trend,’ and then becomes a wasted season before you know it.  and bargs seems on that path, with the occasional high-efficiency offensive game thrown in every so often, seemingly just to act as a tease.  but who knows, it IS early, and there is time for him to turn things around.  offensively.  defensively or on the glass?  i gave up on that long ago.  he is what he is, so you either find a way to bring out the good & minimize the bad, or you cut ties.

     – IMO, the main impediment to the raptors moving bargs to the bench in favour of, well, anyone (davis is the latest name bandied about, no-doubt spurred by his recent showings) is the lack of anything resembling ‘production’ from the SF spot.  but hell, if it’s time for experimenting (which is what bringing bargs off the bench & starting ED would be), then why not go whole hog, and start ross @  the 2 & slide DD to the 3?  at the very least, DD would be the worst defender on the starting lineup, and he may struggle against bigger 3s, but he’d at least have competent help around him.  i don’t think there would be an overwhelming drop in offensive productivity as a unit, and it’d give ross a taste of extended minutes against quality opponents.  if he fails, then at least you know he isn’t ready.

    – doing so allows bargs to play with amir & jose in the 2nd unit, which should benefit him…i’ve been told he’d be super-ultra-awesome playing against bench players.  w/e.

    still lots of holes, and some of that can be traced to fields & anderson being out, but anyone who thinks either are difference-makers is perhaps overstating their respective values…yes, they’d add depth, but neither is the cog missing from this wheel.


    now for something completely different…as a raptor pessimist, i generally see things cynically, but as far as W’s & L’s go, while they DESERVE the record they currently own, i’ll echo some sentiments made here, in that they are close to putting things together (despite all the misfortune/poor play/poor game management/injuries we’ve seen).  they – for the most part – are playing hard, and competing.  winning doesn’t just happen, it’s something that has to be learned. 

    when i look at their games as a whole, i can pick out 4 or 5 losses that could legitimately have been Ws had just a single play gone their way (yes, most teams can probably say the same).  the raps seem somewhat snakebitten, and while some of that is their own doing, there’s no denying that if this team was playing around .500 (given their close losses, not an unrealistic idea had some breaks gone their way), i doubt that we’d see this much gnashing of teeth/rendering of garments.  at the end of the day, you are what your record says you are…but i think they can build on what they’ve done, even if the results so far haven’t been in their favour.

    • Destro

      I know fans want to say bargs wont get traded as long as BC is here,i disagree now with that… I honestly think he is going to be dealt before the trade deadline…BC’s job is on the line again and you know hes watching thinking he has to make one more big move to save himself….I think the anti bargs sentiment is too strong now too ignore even for him…Ironic if Ed Davis’s 15/14 game helped push him out the door…but i think it did….because i think BC is thinking about moving him now and i think yesterday was the final straw that made up his mind…

      • Dan

         Who would he trade him for. Bryan tends to try and recapture past success since he seems lost on how to create present success. You could end up with Amare. If he actually plays he is much better and more explosive then Andrea. But his knees are terrible and could be finished at any time. His contract is terrible. I just don’t see them coming out on top in a trade. You can get more productive older guys with big contracts. LIke Gasol or Boozer. Neither play d but they are more efficient scorers and rebound the ball. There doesn’t seem to be a lot of quality wings you could trade for.

        • Princess bargs

          Tyreke evans i do it straight up whether he resigns or not . Start ed davis and trade calderon later on

          • Destro

            I think Evans and somebody else would be about right…Two players that need a change of scenery…

            • Dan

               Evans is a very similar game to Demar. Better ball handler but maybe even worse shooter. Neither is really a three. Teams would just pack the paint and dare them to shoot jumpers. He is another player that plays no D or makes players around him better. If you had one of them coming off the bench that would really boost the bench production.

              • Dan

                If only Bargs could get the flu or be out a game or two to see how Davis would fit starting. The biggest need is small forward if Fields is not back any time soon. Prince would be a good veteran for this team. Plays good defense and cares more about winning then stats. In the Detroit game he made two big baskets in the post. Where most players on the Raps try to win with long Jumpers.

                • Hound

                  Seems to me Bargs missed about 30 games last year. I don’t recall ED playing that well. I think everyone should temper there enthusiasm. 1 game does not make an allstar.

                • 2damkule


                  everyone knows it takes 13 games for that…

  • FAQ

    Bargnani! Bargnani! Bargnani!  He’s NOT a PF.. he’s a PA.. Power Arc-er..!!!

  • Fletchmer

    This loss is 100% on Casey. Triano got raked over the coals for plays out of Timeouts can someone honestly tell me Casey is better. shit I cant even remember them scoring once off a crucial timeout this year. Yesterday was the worst. anyone who follows this team knows we see all this before. Lousy inbound.  5 second call. We have been a week inbounding team for years did he not review any of our previous weaknesses All on Casey using the little talent he has available.

     as for Bargs it reminded me of the Patrick Roy episode that seen him leave Montreal in disgust. Left him in for what 10 goals to humiliate him. I doubt Bargs wanted to be on the court any more than the haters wanted him to be.  Casey knew what was going to happen. The only possible reason I can see to have him out there is because in Casey’s eyes he is a better defender than the other options and if that is the case that does not say much about the other choices

    Out coached again

  • Dan

    “Andrea Bargnani scored 4 pts on 2-of-19 shooting vs
    Spurs. Per Elias, he’s 1st player in 25+ years to score < 5 pts w/
    that many FG attempts"
    Andrea is finally setting some records!!!

  • footie

    Poor Bargnani at least is making some good money from all this, the Raptors fans  accused him even if in Toronto snow in Winter , and his fans ( not from Toronto where he doesn’t have any left)  in the last few years are begging him  to ask for a trade …

    in few words nobody wants him here , but he still say that he loves Canada and Toronto , poor fool!

    • Destro

      Of course he loves it here….Where else could he get away with what he doesnt do and never be held responsible for it ? You think he wants to play for another coach and org that wont pamper him and coddle him in the media ? He doesnt have the testicular fortitude for the treatment he’d get in another city from the team,fans and media….

      He been getting off easy here for years AGAIN of course he loves it here…

  • Kujo

    “They are still a fringe playoff team in this weak Eastern conference.”

    Really?  Not buying this at all.  Those that said the Raptors would be an 8th seed threat this year are looking foolish.  I had to see it to believe.  The Bobcats are bigger playoff threat (never thought I would say that this soon).
    There’s no doubt in my mind BC has put pressure on Casey to play Bargs.  What a joke.  No respectable org pulls that crap ala the Spurs.  Casey should be benching his ass when he’s a complete non factor, and liability out there.

  • NyAlesund

    This was the pivotal game. Something is going to happen. I don not know what, but I am expecting some answers. From the guys, from the coach, from the GM (trade)…….

  • footie

     pamper him and coddle him in the media ? wow can somebody post his stats from the ACC and away they look pretty different , I start to think his putting too much pressure on himself at home.

  • Wmalawson

    Brutal loss. Combined effort. Jose throwing away two inbound passes!?!? Who made the call to have one of the shortest guys on the team inbound the ball? Bargs played like shit!?!? Who left him in the game? Hard to watch….again. Hard to stay the course these days as a fan from day one.

  • Creebrave

    I was so mad yesterday I traded Bargs and a 2014 Second Round Pick off my 2k13 team for Batum…

    Raps fans can only wish…

  • FAQ

    T.H.F.’s going rabid now ….LOL

    Did you actually believe this team was better than 3-11… and if you did who sold you on that silly idea.. or did you just convince yourself…???

    Perhaps the Raps will show improvement in the latter part of the season when their schedule becomes more favourable …. and they have ‘jelled’ as a team …. unless there are unexpected trades and then the team will really tank… believe it.