Morning Coffee

Morning Coffee July 21


Toronto Sun

During his four-year NBA career that includes stops in Portland and Indiana, the 6-foot-3 Jack has been durable.

He’s considered a high-character individual whose best days clearly are ahead of him.

Jack supplanted ex-Raptor T.J. Ford as Indiana’s starting point guard and is more than capable of sliding over at shooting guard.

He’ll attack the rim and provide just enough defence that won’t get Jack exposed on the perimeter.

Jack addresses needs much like Turkoglu (point forward) and first-round draft pick DeMar DeRozan (athleticism) filled when the Raptors first began to re-do their roster.

Globe and Mail

The Toronto Raptors have added their latest puzzle piece. The Indiana Pacers confirmed yesterday that they would not match the Raptors’ four-year, $20-million (all currency U.S.) contract offer for Jarrett Jack. That clears the restricted free agent to sign with Toronto. He’s expected to appear at a press conference at the Air Canada Centre today.

Jack is expected to solidify the point guard spot behind Jose Calderon, which was a weak spot when Calderon was injured for large parts of last season and a reason why the Raptors finished 33-49 and out of the playoffs for the first time in two seasons.

Globe and Mail

I didn’t see any of Demar DeRozan’s games at the Raptors now concluded NBA Summer League, but looking at his line the one thing I liked was that he took it upon himself to take just five three-pointers. It’s not in his arsenal right now, which isn’t to say it won’t be at some point in his career, but I like the fact that he was able to find ways to get up 15 shots a game without taking threes that the opposition was likely daring him to shoot. That suggests he was running the lanes and working hard in the half-court to find his shots. He converted 49.3 per cent of them which implies a mid-range game with promise. In fact, if you take away the five threes (he made one) he shot better than 50 per cent for the week. If you are going to be the fifth option, on the court to run wide on the break and slash into space on the half-court, that’s the kind of efficiency that will keep you on the floor.

NBA Roundtable

Description of Jarrett’s game — Jack of all trades, master of none — Jarrett Jack is mediocre or slightly below average pretty much across the board, which does make him a decent all-round player … but he has very few high level skills.

Jarrett Jack is a poor defender at the point guard position, he lacks the lateral quickness to stay with opposing point guards and gets burnt repeatedly on the defensive end. At the two guard, he’s decent, but undersized and not all that talented defensively to begin with. Jack is also a mediocre rebounder for a point and a poor one at the two.

Heels On Hardwood

The Toronto Raptors were 1 of 22 teams who took part in Vegas Summer League this year and ended the week with a record of 3-2. The win-loss record holds little importance here with the focus put on learning a teams system. The Raptors had 4 players on the SL roster who are under contract for the 2009-2010 season and the games gave the coaches a chance to see how they have been developing and pinpoint what they need to work on for the rest of the summer. The rest of the roster was made up of hopefuls trying to snag a roster spot on this team or any other that was scouting at the tournament.

Bleacher Report

He averaged 15 points a game last season, scoring five more than he did the previous season. Look for him to average around 15-19 points this season. Him and Chris Bosh will become one of the better, yet softer front courts in the league.
This will be the season where all the years of waiting pays off and Bargnani takes off the bust label as some see him as.
I’m not sure that Bargnani can live up the expectations of a number one pick, but he will show that he can be at least a borderline All-Star.

Another thing that drew my attention was their knowledge of NBA basketball. I was surprised by the number of people who knew me; I was stopped in the street by people asking me for autographs and photographs. Basketball is one of the biggest mass sports in China. I do not know the country well enough to say that it is the most well known or important sport, but I am sure that it is the most followed sport.

The visit was grueling for the number of trips and events that I participated in, but I had a great time and I am looking forward to returning next year, it was a great experience. I would like to say thank you to all of the people from LI NING for the wonderful treatment and for making this experience possible.


Although Evans adds a toughness and rebounding prowess the make-up of the front court is still worrisome. This teams ability to rebound the ball still causes me grave concern (Hedo doesn’t rebound nearly as well as one would hope), the Raps don’t have a true shot blocker and frankly neither Bosh, Bargnani nor Evans are a defensive force.

With a limited amount of cash left to spend (bi-annual and veterans min) it’s a tall order…in particular when guys like Chris Wilcox and Joel Anthony are quickly being taken off the market. I do feel like the reward of signing a player of Jack’s caliber was worth the wait, even if it meant less choice when it comes to serviceable bigs, but there is not much left to choose from.

So who’s left?

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