The morning after the season before
So let’s do A Bunch of Pointers and see where it takes us.
Sound okay? Cool.
See ya, Patrick.
I can say with pretty much certainty that those are two fellows – both good guys who’ll be missed in the whole ‘hey, what’s happening’ conversational vein – who will have walked off the Air Canada Centre court last night for the last time as Raptors but it begs the question, who else is gone?
Of course, Chris Bosh is the big question and we all know there’ll be more than enough speculation about him for the next little while that it’s not worth getting into it today.
But how about a couple of others? As I watched Antoine Wright walk to the elevator on crutches after it was all over, I figure that might the last time I see him around the Raptors locker room because he’s a free agent and I’m not sure there’s room for him, as I’ve mentioned a few times before.
But what about Turk? Or one of the point guards? Or Reggie Evans?
Think they’ll all be back?
If I had to guess, and that’s all it is right now, I would think Bryan would want to give Turk another year to redeem himself but I do think he’ll move one of his point guards and I am pretty certain he’ll try hard to move Reggie sometime this summer.
So that’d make another five guys at least gone from the roster and if Bosh goes, that’ll make six. And let’s say they can’t find a contract number that suits Amir Johnson, also a free agent, and that promising young big moves, too.
That’s seven guys gone, almost half the roster, and here we go again with the blowing up.
Quite aside from the fact it’ll get some of you all riled up and that’s never a bad thing (I keed, I keed), I am going to say this:
They should not make a move on Jay.
I think he’s a good coach, an excellent guy at Xs and Os and deserves another year. No, he’s not fiery and he’s not the greatest quote in the world and sometimes he comes across as unwilling to publicly criticize his players, to the point where he mouths platitudes that aren’t exactly true.
But there’s some promise there and at some point, you have to let a guy grow into his job rather than pull the rug out from under him too quickly.
I don’t know about his assistants – maybe they need to find some grizzled old screamer to sit next to him – but I do feel that Jay deserves the chance to take another new group and see what he can do. That’s not popular opinion – it was even debated heatedly at our Annual Last Game Of The Year Grunt-o-rama after last night’s game – but it’s what I think.
As perhaps I’ve mentioned a time or two, I think coaches get too much credit when things are going good and too much blame when they’re going bad and to make a change here for little more than change’s sake doesn’t work.
Although, I think I’d find it hugely entertaining to see how long it would take some of you to turn on the new saviour they brought it.
One of the more telling things about Wednesday night?
Last game of the regular season, kind of important in a ‘man, they better win’ kind of way, perhaps the last game for some players and still they can’t sell out?
That has to be troubling to the suits upstairs, doesn’t it?
And I found it kind of odd, after all the disappointments over the course of 41 games and the non-playoff end to the year that when the final buzzer went, the fans stood and applauded.
Good on them, actually. Odd, though. Quite.
So Toronto’s 40-42, Memphis is 40-42 and the No. 12 pick in June’s draft is far from a thing.
What happens now is the league – or someone who works for the league – flips a coin to see who’s No. 12 and who’s No. 13 going into the draft.
That’ll be exciting, won’t it?
What’s up now? Well, just to keep you up to speed, and to make sure you know what’s coming, here’s how the next few days will unfold.
After I get Super Dog all walked, watered and fed, it’s time to head down to the ACC for clean-up day. What they do is, after the players get their end-of-season physicals and have their exit meetings with Bryan and Jay, they parade select ones through the post-game interview room so we can grill them.
I’m pretty sure we’ll talk to Bosh, Turk, Jarrett, Jose, DeMar and perhaps even Andrea.
Oh, and Jay, too.
The whole process takes about three or four hours in a mind-numbingly boring day and then we figure out what the story is.
But getting words of wisdom and the state of the franchise opinion from Bryan will have to wait until at least Monday; he’s off at NBA board meetings today and can’t talk to us.
They’re dancing in the streets of Chicago now that the Bulls have made it. Or John Paxson and Vinny Del Negro are having a steel cage match.
I’m not sure.
But whatever it is, let’s make one final check with my boy K.C. and see what’s going on.
I will point you now in the direction of Rick down in Charlotte where we once again hear from Larry Brown, who I still quite like and respect.
Here’s a kind of verbatim conversation I had with a fellow before last night’s game. Him first.
“What about Bosh?”
“I think he’s gone but six week ago I thought he was staying so who knows.”
“Sign-and-trade?" “That’s what they want.”
“Sure, and something really good with him. That seems to be what the people want.”
“Tell me about Lee.”
“If you put him out there with Bargnani and Turkoglu it might be the worst defensive front court in the history of basketball. But he’s a good guy.”
“Hmm. That might be enough.”
Oh, what’s up here?
Well, the plan is to have a little player-by-player look at the roster in this space tomorrow, maybe a GruntTV wrapup today if I’ve got time or tomorrow at the latest and we’ll keep doing our usual good stuff each morning.
And if you’ve got questions, you can click here and send ‘em because I’ll have some time Friday and Saturday to perhaps sit on a stool and answer them.