But Triano, if he wants a career as an NBA head coach beyond this, has to make his own decisions here. No one is saying they're easy decisions. He can't bench the whole team. The options in reserve aren't particularly appealing. Every win is important.
But if you won't sit a guy against the Nets, when are you going to sit him? And if you don't recognize that defence will be the story of this season, understand that the Raptors, with Saturday's 100-90 win, have now won 27 consecutive games in which they've held teams to under 100 points, the longest current streak in the NBA. As offensively potent as the Raptors are, all they need to do is play a tiny bit of defence. It's not a Herculean requirement. Half the teams in the league are holding opponents under 100 this season. Triano, at some point, has to make it known that he won't stand for all the standing around while the other team scores and rebounds at will.
Bargnani hasn't been the only slacker during the ongoing slump. Chris Bosh has apparently decided to recommence playing like an all-star, but Hedo Turkoglu continued to loaf through his early retirement in Saturday's first half, after which he somehow earned the second-half luxury of 16 minutes, second-most on the team.
For playing him, Triano got to hear Turkoglu spend another post-game scrum complaining about his miscast role to any U.S.-based scribe who cared to listen. At some point, that has to stop. Turkoglu has to start playing hard. Such is the reality of guaranteed contracts that Triano has but one card to play, and it's playing time.
But don't take it from the media. As Reggie Evans, the Raptors forward, was saying on Saturday: ``We're playing like we're in a rec league – prima donna-style basketball. That's what we're playing right now."
Evans didn't name names, but you don't need to be John Wooden to understand who needs to be brought around.