Man, $17.9 million just doesn’t get you what it used to.

Rudy Gay, Toronto’s highest-paid player by an enormous margin, has had about as bad a start to the 2013-14 season as anyone could have imagined. He’s shooting below 35% from the field, he’s turning the ball over at a rate well above his career norms and he is easily lagging his fellow starters in plus-minus stats. As DeMar DeRozan continues to look more and more comfortable leading the Raptors on the wings, Gay looks increasingly like he is unsure of how he is supposed to help his team win, which is a problem when he is cashing a cheque that takes up thirty-percent of the team’s salary cap.

Throughout his career in Memphis, Gay acted as the primary offensive force on the wing because he was often by far the club’s most talented option. The Grizzlies were so confident in his ability to hold down their wing scoring, in fact, they paired him with a virtual non-entity on offence, Tony Allen, when they made their biggest push for respectability as a franchise. Gay was given a very long leash to play with and he made full use of that freedom by leading his team in field goal attempts in every year but one.

Things are different in Toronto, though. For the first time in his career, Gay is starting alongside a wing that is not only in his stratosphere as a scorer, but through three games is actually handily surpassing him as a scoring option for the Raptors. When Gay arrived in Toronto, he called DeRozan “by far the best wing I’ve ever played with,” a sentiment that has proven more true than Gay probably intended at the time as the Raptors are now having trouble adjusting to the reality that it is DeRozan, and not Gay, that needs to be anchoring their offensive attack.

While DeRozan is leading the Raptors in raw field goal attempts per game, it is Gay that leads the team in shots per 36 minutes, and on the season he has only taken one shot fewer than DeRozan despite shooting 12% worse than him from the field. Put another way, the only reason that Gay is not leading the Raptors in field goal attempts per game is because he is playing 3.3 fewer minutes per game than DeRozan is. If their minutes were equalized, Gay would be leading the team in shots and exemplifying one of the biggest on-court problems facing the Raptors after one week of play: that this team’s offence is kind of broken.

So, all of this means that Gay is a major problem and his exodus cannot come quick enough, right? Well, not so fast, cowboy.

Look, Gay has had a bad start to the year, there is no way of getting around that. He takes seven pull-up jumpers per game (suggesting his shot selection hasn’t improved since that puts him at 24th in the NBA), he’s turning it over on 15.7 percent of his possessions and the team is allowing 5.7 points per 100 possessions over their average when he is on the court. Also, did I mention that 32.7% field goal percentage? Because that’s not good, either.

However, the devil is in the details here, the key one being that Gay is not going to shoot 32.7% from the floor for the rest of the year. This is a career 45% shooter, so those numbers will normalize as the season wears on. Right now he is pressing and you can see it every time he touches the ball. This slump is already in his head and it is messing with his play. Now that doesn’t justify plays like the one he made in the Milwaukee game where he passed on an open three to take a dribble inside the arc to fire up a (missed) long-two. Nor does it excuse his lazy behind-the-back pass to Amir Johnson, who wasn’t looking for the ball, that wound up being another in a long line of turnovers. It does, however, at least begin to sprinkle some context onto why Gay is making so many bone-headed plays when he gets the ball in his hands. He’s thinking and not reacting and there is no worse place for an NBA player to be than in that particular headspace.

There’s a simple solution, though, right? Stop taking all of those jumpers and get to the paint. Well, Gay has actually been very good about getting into the paint. In fact, he’s actually taken 40% of all of his shots at the rim (22 of 55 FGAs). He’s also averaging 5.7 free throw attempts per game, second only to Kyle Lowry’s 7.3. He’s not hitting his paint shots as well as he needs to (40.9%), but at least he’s trying to get himself high-percentage shots at a time when his jumper is clearly not agreeing with him.

For what it’s worth, he’s taken a far greater percentage of his shots at the rim than DeMar DeRozan has (26.8% of his attempts have been at the rim), and takes one less pull-up jumper per game than DeRozan. Before you think that DeRozan is justified in taking those pull-up jumpers because he’s making them at a far greater rate than Gay is right now, know that DeRozan is only leading Gay by 0.5% in eFG% on pull-up jumpers (thanks for the new player tracking stats,!)

Then there are the 15 rebounds that Gay pulled down against the Bucks on Saturday. Gay made a somewhat self-serving acknowledgement that he’d need to find other ways to help his team out if his shot isn’t falling after the club’s loss to Atlanta (that’s a canned sound bite if ever there was one), yet true to his word he attacked the glass with ferocity twenty-four hours later. One of the biggest reasons the Raptors were able to hold off the Bucks in that game was their 60-38 rebounding advantage, and no player on the Raptors had a bigger rebounding impact than Gay.

All of this is a roundabout way of saying that while Gay is struggling to find his niche playing alongside a wing that may have surpassed him in ability (or at least efficiency) this summer, at least he is trying to find out how he has to augment his game to accommodate.

This is probably good for Gay.

Dwane Casey could afford to take Gay out for a couple of minutes in the fourth quarter on Saturday because they didn’t need him to be the club’s offensive catalyst in a close game. Gay doesn’t have free reign like he had for so long in Memphis. The Raptors don’t need him in the same way that Memphis believed they did for so many years. Don’t misunderstand, the Raptors need an effective Gay as presently constructed if they want to consistently win games, but they don’t need him to dominate scoring on the wings to have a chance at winning. For the first time Gay has to grow as a player to be afforded the kind of role he has grown accustomed to after seven NBA seasons.

At this point it’s an open secret that Masai Ujiri would trade Gay if he got a whiff of what he considered to be a palatable deal. Gay simply makes too much money to not seriously entertain any and all offers that come the team’s way. Whether the Raptors trade him or not, though, Gay making strides to reimagine his game can only help their cause going forward, which in a way opens up the possibility that Gay’s early-season struggles could actually be a boon for him and the Raptors if he learns from it in the right way.

He may never be worth the $17.9 million he’s gonna make this year, but maybe an early-season reality check can force him to get a little closer to justifying it than he may have otherwise if he’d performed at his typical NBA standard.

  • Adriiian

    I’m not ready to give up on Rudy yet. Just need to have faith. His game will improve.


    • Moe

      I feel this way as well but it’s hard not to want to tank, it is honestly the best solution For long term.

      • RaptorFan

        “it’s hard not to want to tank, it is honestly the best solution For long term.”
        LOL – Where is it proven that tanking creates a championship team later on?? How do you know its the best solution for us long term?
        Please don’t confuse rebuilding with tanking. Tanking does more harm than good….ESPECIALLY if you don’t win the lottery.
        Fans keep throwing this crap out there and it needs to stop. There is no proof that tanking is a better solution long term for THIS TEAM than any other strategy. Good decisions/moves by Ujiri is what’s needed to take this team to a new level…..NOT blowing it up and keeping our fingers crossed!

        • Andre Julian Ward

          Finally, someone with sense …^

        • 2damkule

          i dunno, man, i think you’re being a bit disingenuous with your (strawman-esque) argument. pro-tankers aren’t advocating that ‘TANKING = CHAMPIONSHIP,’ and suggesting as much does a disservice to the debate. what is advocated among us in team tank is that for a franchise such as the raptors (not, historically, a FA destination of choice), who are in this particular situation (high team payroll, middling success), tanking is a legitimate way to get off the carousel; rebuilding is nice, but that assumes that there are multiple options in terms of obtaining star-quality players, either via the draft, trade or free agency, and if we’re being completely honest, unless they’re willing to take on bad contracts for mediocre players, or give up on the few players who actually have a high ceiling, they aren’t making a trade that will improve them – you have to give to get, and the few transactions that have taken place recently that were lopsided netted the solid picks &/or cap relief. unless the raps are willing to move picks with solid young players, then they aren’t going to get back a difference-maker.

          similarly, until/unless they become a winner on the court, FAs that they’d want aren’t going to sign here (yes, you can always sign FAs if you throw enough money at them, but a) they don’t have the same flexibility as a lot of other teams in that regard, and b) the kind of players that they SHOULD want to sign here aren’t going to do so just for the money).

          what i see you advocating is essentially that they continue to try the same thing over & over & over…fill in the pieces here & there, always trying to be competitive in a league that rewards teams for being really good or really bad, but NEVER rewards teams for being middle of the road. as currently constructed, they are middle of the road, and that should be the most frightening realization any fan of any team makes. i would rather they put on a full-blown tank effort – it would at least give me something to look forward to. you can call it ‘rebuilding’ if it makes you feel better.

          • RudyG

            How many years we have been rebuilding? Can we please just try to get into the playoff? Fans are tired of rebuilding status, tanking is always a big risk and it is very frustrating for fans to see your team every year always in the bottom.

            • Nilanka15

              Just because Colangelo called it rebuilding, doesn’t mean we actually were.

              • SR

                Yeah, it wasn’t rebuilding at all, and nobody was calling it that. All those offseason Colanagelo acquisitions – Turkoglu, O’Neal, TJ Ford, etc. etc. etc. – he was always one move away from trying to get over the hump. Post-Bosh was the first time the team didn’t really have playoff aspirations – and Colangelo’s patience with that lasted until the Gay trade. A capped-out team (they’ve always had one of the higher payrolls) is not a rebuilding team.

                This team has never been rebuilding in any serious sense – they’ve just been bad. Not the same thing.

              • Minks77

                rebuilding, retooling, reselling the same garbage. Colangelo was a great snake oil salesman.

            • 2damkule

              what does it matter how long they’ve been ‘rebuilding?’ did you define the gay acquisition as a ‘rebuilding’ move? what moves, specifically, that have been undertaken in the last 3 years count as ‘rebuilding?’

              would making the playoffs as weak prey for an actual contender, knowing that that was the ceiling for this team, make you happy? why don’t you want more? how many years of ‘making the playoffs’ and being eliminated in the first round (with maybe – MAYBE – a visit to the 2nd round if all goes well) will satisfy you? would you be disappointed if that was as good as it was going to get?

              tanking is a risk. everything is a risk. well, almost. you know what isn’t a risk? being mediocre. year in & year out of being a playoff contender (not a championship contender, mind you, but a contender to make the playoffs). always something to play for, the games ‘have meaning,’ the fans fill the seats, because, like, playoffs!! basketball ain’t hockey…it isn’t about making the playoffs because ‘anything can happen.’ it’s not uncommon for an 8th seed in the NHL to make if far in the playoffs, or win it all (just happened a couple years ago). it just doesn’t happen in basketball…there’s a much clearer break between the actual contenders & the pseudo-contenders.

              perpetual mediocrity is not the objective.

      • youngjames

        Lets say we “tank” and end up with the sixth pick or less – how is that a long term solution?

        • Nilanka15

          We make use of the draft as many times as it takes to get a franchise talent, cuz we certainly aren’t getting him through free agency or trades.

          Besides, if the 2014 draft is as deep as they say it is, even the 6th pick could change the franchise for the better.

          • beaverboi

            I understand that, but doesn’t that mean that 5 other bad teams get franchise-changing talents??

            • Nilanka15

              If the pre-draft scouting reports are true, then yes.

              Either way, I don’t think the Raptors should be too concerned about what other teams do. Worry about ourselves first.

  • Paul Menezes

    I’d be more impressed with 15 assists

    • Moe

      Lebron only got that like once and he is the best Foward passer… Gay getting 7 would be impressive

    • Sammy

      15 rebounds isn’t good enough?

      • Paul Menezes

        It’s not reboundball.

        • DDayLewis

          It’s not assist-ball either.

          • Paul Menezes

            Ok I was quoting bargs with the “reboundball” comment. Regardless the rebounds are nice, but I still rather him show up in the assist column instead. Our bigs are doing a great job boxing out, which will allow KL, RG, and DD to get a few more rebounds than normal.

            • DDayLewis

              I’d argue that rebounding has been the sole reason why Toronto has 2 wins right now. Had it not been for those extra possessions obtained (offensive boards), or the possessions retained (defensive rebounds), Toronto would not have been able to defeat either Milwaukee, nor Boston.

              • Raptorsss

                My dream is for Gay to be Lebron light and go for triple doubles, but I’ve given up on that possibility

    • Overthewall

      Rudy Gay, Demar, and Lowry plus 1st round pick for Rondo and Courtney Lee.

  • arsenalist

    I get that we’re giving him points for driving, but he’s not going to change his colours and become a Paul Pierce type player, which is what many thought he’d become when he came into the league. He is what he is and any improvement or regression will be nominal.

    What I’m looking from Gay is scoring efficiency because you can’t have two high-volume guys in the backcourt, and this guy needs shots to survive. He’s not a guy who will defer to DeRozan, take 12 shots a game, play great defense, and be content with it – not at this stage of his career. He’s still go the “I’m the man” mentality to a large degree and I don’t see that going away. Basically, DeRozan have him have the potential to be a solid backcourt if Gay tunes his game but I don’t see him doing that.

    • AxlT

      All true, but I think at least his efforts disqualify the Bargnani comparisons starting to emerge

      • Tim W.

        The only Bargnani comparisons I’ve read are those who are arguing in support of Gay, and saying he’s not like Bargnani. I would hope NO ONE would make that comparison, because it’s not even close. For all his flaws, Gay is still a productive NBA player. I think he’s wrong for this team, but I’d never say he’s not productive.

    • Roarque

      Could DDR’s success be to some degree the result of opponents sending their best defender to cover Rudy? If Rudy isn’t there does DDR get the double team that will bring him back down to earth? The answer lies in Landry Fields evolving as a threat on the other wing I think.

    • SR

      All Gay needs to do is take 2-4 less of those quick, out of sync with the offense long J’s per game and I’d be basically happy. If we could cut his salary by 50%, that would also be great.

    • Bendit

      I dont see Gay cutting back on his shots/game over the next year or two. He has an upcoming contract negotiation to worry about….here or elsewhere.

  • Dagger

    Let’s be honest:

    1. Rudy is a very inefficient scorer. Period. Yes, his career FG% is 45%. But his FG% has actually declined for three straight years, a slump that has been headlined by the baffling disappearance of his three point shot.
    2. Derozan is also not an efficient scorer. He’s been okay this year, but he’s averaging more points because he’s taking more shots, not because he’s suddenly developed a new offensive repertoire.
    3. Neither Derozan nor Gay are good all-around players. Gay grabs a decent amount of rebounds for his position, but he’s a poor passer. Derozan is not a good rebounder and he’s not a good passer. Neither are consistently competent defenders.
    4. Gay and Derozan are complemented by a score-first point guard who might be even less efficient than they are. Since 2009 Lowry has shot around 41% from the field.

    In conclusion, there’s a simple, sad reality here: Derozan, Gay and Lowry are all score-first players who can’t score efficiently. They have overlapping skills and have reached the age where future improvement is almost certain to be incremental. All of them are athletic and flashy, but none of them are good all-around players, which is reflected in their mediocre advanced stats. This in an NBA where advanced analytics are driving an increased emphasis on efficiency, which has helped Lebron and Durant become such offensive wrecking balls. Derozan, Gay and Lowry are all about 10 or 15 years behind where the league is today.

    No team is going to win anything significant by starting these three guys and paying them over $30 million/year. Period.

    • One relaxed fella

      Exactly. At least some fans see things the way they actually are. No hatred, no hype, just plain and simple truth.

    • DDayLewis

      Actually, those “advanced statistics” look very highly on Kyle Lowry (who has always been an above average passer at the PG and a decent shooter).

      • Dagger

        Depends on your definition of “very highly.” His PER last year was 17.5 His WS was .133. Those are “starting PG on a bad team/bench PG on a good team” numbers, which is about right.

        • DDayLewis

          There’s also +/- numbers (Lowry was top 30 in the NBA in xRAPM) and wins produced. Either way, none of the advanced numbers suggest that Lowry is anything worse than an above-average NBA player.

          Also, I don’t know why you think Lowry can’t score efficiently. He’s consistently had a TS% above ~53% (league average for PG’s).

          • 2damkule

            yeah, i’ve been a bigger supporter of KL than others, for the reasons mentioned above…but what i think is at the heart of Dagger’s consternation is that he (KL) is not what you’d classify as a ‘traditional’ pass-first PG. normally, that’s no biggie, and is a trend the L moved to a while back…there are a slew of PGs who you’d probably think of as scorers first & distributors second, and they are among the very best in the L (rose, westbrook, irving, etc.). BUT…it is a bit of an issue for the raps, as neither DD nor gay are what you’d call proficient (or efficient) creators of offense. they CAN get their own shots, but the efficiency #s indicate that, well, maybe they shouldn’t be trying to do so, that a pass-first PG who can get them the ball in favourable positions to score would suit the team better. i’m not suggesting lowry isn’t capable of doing so, and there’s no doubt that the lack of creativity on offense lies at the feet of casey (at least somewhat), but there’s only one ball, and when you’ve got 3 guys on the floor who want it in their hands, it can stagnate the offense…more so when you’ve got two frontcourt players who live off the PnR, something the raptors, for whatever reason, are loathe to do. coaching? PG play? some mix? yes…

        • theswirsky

          “Those are “starting PG on a bad team/bench PG on a good team”
          yeah, hate to break it to you but that qualitative assessment doesnt exist in the world of stats.
          As DDayLewis points out, what those #s are saying is he is above-average, but not anything else. The rest is just your opinion (which is fine) but not a quantitative comparison to the stats themselves.


      Yeah, Tim seem to be the Doug of RR. This piece is just a sad attempt to convince the fans they don’t understand what they are seeing and that Gay will “probably” figure out. I’m hoping he’s just trying to get the fans to stop pointing out the obvious, as to not completely destroy any trade value he may have left.

      The guy couldn’t figure it put playing alongside far better talent, but DD will be the one to change his ways. Riiiiight.

      • Tim W.

        “This piece is just a sad attempt to convince the fans they don’t understand what they are seeing…”

        This labelling of people who disagree with you has to stop. It’s all opinions, here. The pettiness on both sides is starting to get out of hand.

        • Guest

          Get used to it. This is RR. At least the bigotry has become much less apparent.

          • Tim W.

            We’re trying to clean things up on this site for that very reason. There will be some changes soon.

            • Michel G

              That would be welcomed. I might post more often.

              • youngjames

                Lets change the most popular Raptors website and commentary to what ever MichelG wants – that would be a great business move. Tell all the advertisers that the site is being re-arranged to suit Michel G and “Guest” – Doug Smith. The advertiser who pay to be on this site would welcome and love a change of format for the worse. Less people visiting but who cares MichelG might post more often!

            • youngjames

              @Tim W – if you can’t see it already “guest” is Doug Smith – he only responded to the comments that were aimed at him. and MichaelG…DUH! Is Michael Grange. You wanna “clean things up” just for those two then do it. But you’ll have a site widdled down to 9-12 comments per day with NO conversation at all, just like Smith;s blog. 1 paragraph of the Raptors and 5 more praragraphs about his trips to cover games and his family…this is not what Raptor fans want. His numbers are proof. Doug Smith’s blog is not a “blog” it’s his opinion and who ever agree’s with it – which turns out to be less then 20 actual fans…That ain’t right. Leave this site as it – we don’t care about these grandfathers who are running blogs at a 1/3 of the tilt RR does. RR has more people visit and comment then any other Raptors focused site – why change what the people want? Like Howard Stern – there are always old fuddy-duddies that want things to be status quo and they hate his show, yet he is the most popular DJ daily in the USA. MichaelG and Doug Smith are very jealous of this blog – very very jealous.

              • Tim W.

                Cleaning up the comments means stopping the petty namecalling that doesn’t add anything of value. That sort of behaviour stops a lot of people from commenting.

  • rap fan 2

    Hopefully, I think it’s just getting rid of rust and the season is early. Practicing and preparing in the off season is way different than playing real games in the NBA against real players playing real defense. So far I see the team missing a lot of free throws so it’s probably due to some rust. The other thing that is jumping out at me so far is that the team is running too many isolation plays. It’s a lot harder to score on a set defence unless you have a great mismatch or your shot is really on. I think the shooting percentages will go up for everyone, especially for Rudy and Demar, if there is way more ball movement to help shift around defenses and allowing better open looks and cutters to attack the rim. To get better ball movement I think you need to operate more as a team and work as one cohesive unit. Just like when you play good defence you need to work as a unit or a system. Imagine how much more effective Rudy, Demar, Terrence and Jonas would be if you set them up with an open lane to the hoop. On the other hand, so far the defence and rebounding have really improved.

  • rap fan 2

    Speaking about Rudy Gay, everyone is focusing on his offensive efficiency and that one side of the game. In fact, I think forget about the offence and what the naysayers say he should focus more on playing better defence, hustle more for steals and rebounds and make his team mates better by getting more assists. He’ll be more valuable as a player. He should quit worrying about his offence. He’s a great athlete and putting more importance on the other parts of the game will make him a great player. Just look at Lebron James, what makes him such a great player? He does everything.

    • Dagger

      Lebron also shoots 56.5% from the field. When you’re paid a max contract as a wing player, you should absolutely worry about your offense AS WELL AS everything else.

      • Rap fan 2

        Yes but you see most everyone is focusing on his offence. Playing NBA basketball is so much more than being an offensive player. Part of the reason Lebron shoots at such a high percentage as well as the Miami Heat as a team are shooting at such a high offensive efficiency is maybe more by design. Lebron tries to attack the rim and get the hoop whenever he gets the chance. Dwayne Wade does this too. Lebron is smart player, he reads the defence and evaluates the situation and I think if he can set up an easier play he’ll do it. He’s a willing passer. The Miami Heat as team pass the ball and try to move it around for the best shot. I see this in the Spurs too. Lebron tries to do everything well. You see him blocking at the rim. Running at passes to get the steal. So what I’m saying about Rudy Gay is that there is so much more room to grow his game by focusing on the other just as important aspects skills like passing, rebounding, hustling for steals and playing great defence, blocking. The other thing I’m saying is your offensive efficiency is related to your teams offensive efficiency. A team that systematically tries to breakdown an opponents defence by passing to the player with the best opportunity to make the basket will tend to produce players with higher efficiency ratings. If Rudy Gay plays in Miami or San Antonio he will play in their system and I think he’ll most likely be a more efficient offensively.

        • 2damkule

          can’t disagree. BUT…the player lebron is now is the player that he has been for years (only a better version, it really is remarkable). the likelihood that gay reinvents himself in some meaningful capacity (which was the gist of Chisholm’s article) seems remote. after a while, guys be who they be…and rudy is who he is.

          here’s a thought, though: on a better team, yes, he’d likely be more efficient offensively, but wouldn’t that be due to him being in a role more suited to his actual skill-set? for either team, he’s coming off the bench, or has a reduced role in the offense, but beyond that, he’d be required to adjust his game to the system, and if he didn’t/couldn’t, then he simply wouldn’t be a part of the system (or not nearly as big a part as he could be based on his raw skills). on a team like TO, there aren’t any better options, so they not only rely far too heavily on him, but gear their system around him & what he’s comfortable doing.

          • Statement

            In the Grantland article last year, Rucker was saying that isolations are fabolous for the Raptors. Also, I think there was an article on the republic that indicated that Gay and Derozan were amongst the best iso-players in the league.

            • Tim W.

              The problem is that an isolation-based offense is usually less reliable than other types of offense, and tends to underperform in the playoffs.

              • Statement

                I hear ya.

  • SR

    This is the problem with advanced stats gurus. (What you should know right now is that I’m a big fan of advanced stats.)

    The pendulum has swung so far, especially for a couple contributors on this blog, that they ignore things like a 60-38 (!!!!!) rebounding advantage that includes an 18-6 advantage on the offensive boards (!!!!!) and a 38-18 FTA advantage (!!!!!!!!!) as minor footnotes in the game story because gosh darn, Rudy Gay took at least 3 more J’s than we’d like to see him take in an average game and (small sample size warning!) his percentages are too low through the first three games of a new season.

    Honestly, everything that has been pointed out in the game recaps so far this season is correct (I also want to see Rudy move the ball better, continue to attack the paint, and take 2-4 fewer J’s per game) – it’s just completely imbalanced and lacking perspective. I’m sick and tired of seeing the usual suspect beat the dead horses of 1) long two’s, 2) FG%, and 3) blowing it up and taking speculation. We get it. It’s part of the game story, so take note and have a discussion. But seriously, there’s so much more going on in these games that is being completely ignored.

    Thanks to The Tim Who Actually Knows Something (Chisholm, that is) for bringing some sanity to this blog.

    • BlakeMurphy

      FWIW, ‘advanced stats’ would absolutely credit the FT disparity and OReb disparity. Doing some things well and other things poorly are not mutually exclusive.

  • Shadow Of Christ

    I’ll say this much: Having Rudy Gay takes more pressure off DeRozan offensively, so if a trade is going to be made, i could see DeRozan going and not Rudy.. Yes, Gay’s contract is ridiculous. However, he’s more effective down the stretch than DeRozan is on a consistent basis. That said, don’t anyone unless it benefits the Raptors in a positive way, IE playoffs

    That’s my two cents.

  • Chuck Johnson

    One undermentioned facet of Rudy’s game has been his inability to create good looks for himself off the bounce. We frequently mention his shot selection, the long 2, etc, but have you seen Rudy try and beat his man off the dribble? He doesn’t have an explosive first step. And there have been a couple of occasions when he did get to the basket that he can’t get the ball over rim. So far it looks like Rudy’s summer workouts were misplaced.

  • Statement

    I have to see the Raps beat the behemoth 76ers before I take them seriously.

  • Parm

    Damnit Dan, why did you have to channel facts and analysis to mitigate the Rudy hate?

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