Wither Marcus and the Ray Allen story, among other stuff
Join Doug Smith for a live Q&A at 1 p.m. today, as the Raptors prepare to take on the Orlando Magic.
I would be remiss if I didn’t point out that Super Son just checked the Orlando weather to let me know what I was missing and found that, at 8 a.m., it was 0 C.
What, pray tell, do you think becomes of Marcus Banks now?
With Jose Calderon coming back, I can’t see there’s much room even for a guy who’s shown himself to be a serviceable backup, even if he’s shown some regression to the mean of late.
(Regression to the mean being one of the things I’ve learned from readers, thank you very much.)
But is there any time for him at all?
I presume Jay might try to use him in specific instances when he needs a stop or two but other than that, I don’t see him getting much more time now than he did early in the season when both point guards are healthy.
The one thing that might happen is this: If either Jack or Calderon gets into early foul trouble and has to sit down (like getting two in the first five minutes, or a fourth early in the second half), I don’t think Jay should have any worries about using Banks for a couple of minutes and resisting the urge to bring the foul-plagued guard back more quickly than he’d like.
A solid third point guard, capable of emergency minutes, is a luxury this team hasn’t had in a long, long time it’s got to be comforting to the coaches to know he’s there.
The answers are:
I’m sure there are those among you who will take great glee in this next little observation.
Did you notice that it seems Vince Carter can’t shoot any more?
He was 2-15 last night in Indy, 3-15 the game before in Chicago and 3-10 the game before that in Minnesota.
That’s a whopping 8-40 over his last three and it can mean only one thing: He’ll make like eight three-pointers and go 14-15 from the field tonight and have about 40 points.
Just warning you.
It must have been Saturday night in Boston when someone asked me about Ray Allen and whether he was a good guy or a good interview. I vaguely remember telling the fellow I had an all right Ray story that I’d use on a slow day this week.
It’s the Saturday before Game 7 of the 2001 Eastern final, Milwaukee against Philly. With the rest of the basketball world focused on the Lakers-Spurs out west, Chris Sheridan, then of the Associated Press, and I find ourselves as the only “national” writers covering Bucks-Sixers and the only two out-of-towners at Milwaukee practice the afternoon before the deciding game.
As the locals are surrounding George Karl or someone, Chris and I were having a private chat with Ray, who we knew a little bit and had a pretty good relationship with.
Talk comes to next day’s game and Ray, entirely unprompted, drops this on us, or words like it:
“The NBA wants Philly to win, it’s all about marketing and BRI.”
We’re a bit taken aback – this is, after all, a true star suggesting the NBA has favourites (duh!) – and ask him to go on.
He gives us about three minutes of why it’s so much better for the league to have Allen Iverson and the Sixers in the final instead of the relatively anonymous Bucks and that the league would love for the small market Bucks to just go away and lose.
Good stuff and a pretty good off-day story that no one else had.
And for that one afternoon, there’ll always be a soft spot in my heart for him.
(As an aside: A while after that conversation, the league surprises everyone by suspending Milwaukee’s Scott Williams for Game 7, the Sixers won and, as I recall, both Allen and George Karl were, at one time, fined for their comments about the league and refs in that series.)
The questions are:
Should the Raptors go after
Anybody cut in a money move yesterday.
Just heading some of you off at the pass.
Oh yeah, let’s start the mail call right now, okay? We’ve had some good weeks lately with early requests, let’s keep it going. Click here and send.
How about that wacky NBA, eh?
Orlando, one of the best teams in the East, plays Indy, one of the worst.
Indiana is without Troy Murphy, Jeff Foster, Danny Granger and Tyler Hansbrough. That's three starters and a key reserve.
Easy Magic win, right?
And that’s why no team “should” ever win a game without playing hard.
Wonder if they’re calling for Jason Williams or Mickeal Pietrus to start or Stan to be fired and replaced by a "real" coach?
How about 1 p.m. today for the usual game-day chat and we can kick around Jose-Jarrett.
(No, we can’t; that was a joke.)
And, of course, we'll be back for the 7 p.m. in-game blog because my day involves the couch, incessant Super Dog walks and has nothing to do with Air Canada.
Someone pointed this out in the comments section yesterday but I’m sure a lot of eyes glazed over trying to read all those diatribes and some of you might have missed it.
Not only is Roko Ukic headed back to Europe to play, he’s got a deal with Fenerbache in Turkey where he will replace – get this! – Willy Solomon, who was cut a week or so ago.
Not sure that means anything at all but it’s oddly cool.
Time to shovel.