It’s New Year’s Eve, so pop some champagne, celebrate with friends and call a cab at the end of the night. As you prepare for celebrations, check out some New Year’s Resolutions the Raptors probably do or should have in mind as we flip the calendar to 2013.
Note: These aren’t meant as arguing points for these players. I simply scanned their profiles for areas for improvement. I’m not trying to vilify anyone.
I resolve to trade Andrea Bargnani.
It’s not that Bargnani can’t be good once again, it’s that he’s a symbol of f ailed era in Toronto and a symbol of failure on Colangelo’s part. He should not be made the scapegoat, but at this point it’s probably in the best interest of the fans, the players, Colangelo and Bargnani to part ways with Il Mago.
I resolve to settle on a wing rotation.
I understand that Mickael Pietrus and Linas Kleiza have their purposes, but Casey needs to make DeRozan and Fields the starters with Ross and Anderson off the bench, using the other two only for spot duty. Fields hasn’t earned it but needs the chance to show improvement, while Ross and Double-A have proven beyond a doubt they’re a bigger part of the near- and long-term future than Pietrus or Kleiza.
I resolve to try and look like I care.
It’s certainly possible he does care, but it’s the aloof, expressionless face that rubs people wrong in bad times. Having said that, he’s probably gone by the deadline anyway.
I resolve to be more consistent in attacking the rim.
DeRozan has shown some nice improvement this season but he’s taken a slight step back in his frequency of trips to the line (0.2 attempts less per game, with 1.0 more field goal attempts). Specifically, he gets to the line much more (5.9 per 36min) in the fourth quarter than in other quarters, so if he could show that kind of aggression early on it may help his overall performance.
I resolve to treat the last eight minutes of the game like the first 40.
In the fourth quarter of games, Lowry has shot way more threes and more overall than earlier in the game, while his first quarter assist, steal and rebound rates are much higher than in the rest of the game. Whether it’s Lowry forgetting the “little stuff” for Hero Ball late in the game or what, if he played every minute like it’s the fourth quarter, you’d hear far less complaining about his attitude.
I resolve to be professional on my way out.
Whether he’s dealt or just walks at the end of the year, Calderon’s entire tenure has been marked with professionalism in every sense of the word. I don’t think he’d do it, but it would be disappointing if he ended up leaving on bad terms, such as with a more hard-lined trade demand or via an unfriendly battle with Lowry down the stretch.
I resolve to be more Boss.
If that’s even possible.
I resolve to foul less.
No seriously, he has more personal fouls than any other player in the NBA right now, and he’s played the fewest minutes of anyone in the top-15. It’s always been a problem for Amir, but after two years of cutting his foul rate appreciably, he’s back to hacking nearly six times per 36 minutes.
I resolve to take this injury as a blessing in disguise.
Jonas had clearly begun to hit a rookie wall, what with the NBA schedule being so much longer and grueling than the European schedule. Four to six weeks off sucks for the team and the fans, but it might be the perfect remedy to keep Valanciunas fresh down the stretch.
I resolve to change my stance on the dunk contest and wow everybody at All-Star Weekend.
I resolve to have more success at being successful.
I’m a journeyman and I take 14 shots per 36 minutes. And you thought I wasn’t on the Kobe System?
I resolve to waive my $4.6M player option for next season.
I resolve to lock myself in a gym until I figure out what’s up with my stroke.
Seriously, 33% from the floor and 32% from long range? This isn’t last year’s John Lucas, and chances are we’ll need that John Lucas after the trade deadline.
I resolve to lay the smack down on Gerry Dee.
Did y’all see this? That’s former RR writer James Herbert laughing in the background, by the way.
I resolve to get mad ink.
I don’t know, I just think it’d be hilarious for Aaron Gray to be tatted up.
I resolve to call this a fresh start.
Honestly, I feel bad that the fans and media turned on Fields so quickly this year when he struggled. After a long lay-off, a retooled jumper and a new calendar year, Fields should treat this as his starting point with the franchise, and so should we.
I resolve to lose to Blake Murphy in a beard-off.
Laying down the gauntlet, Q. Accept in the comments.
Happy New Year everyone. Be safe. And holla at ya boi on Twitter.