Something "complicated" is cooking around the Raptors
A guy takes a night off to go to a thing where great fun was had by all and all heck breaks loose at the end of the night.
The e-mail I got overnight said simply that the Turkoglu to Phoenix thing you can read about here in Paul’s piece is “a lot more complicated” that you’re seeing.
Doesn’t mean it won’t happen, just that it hasn’t and there are all kinds of moving parts.
And considering it’s almost a year to the day since Bryan pulled off the four-team double sign-and-trade transaction that landed Hedo here in the first place “complicated” is something he does quite well.
But what’s it all mean?
Well, if would mean the end of a failed experiment with Turkoglu that would have to go down as one of the darker moments of the Colangelo era but it also would free the team from the final two years of an albatross-like contact. And that’s never a bad thing.
But it would also mean a diminished talent pool seeing how Leandro Barbosa – in my opinion – is a lesser player than Hedo right now and Boris Diaw hasn’t missed too many buffets since moving on from the Suns to the Bobcats.
How either of them, if they get here, ends up fitting will be interesting to see, too, and the mere fact their names are being bandied about may suggest Bryan’s got some other things in play out there, too.
If he gets Barbosa, who can be a 1, does it mean the imminent departure of one of the point guards?
How would Diaw fit on a team with Kleiza and all the other bigs?
Are there more moves afoot?
I would absolutely think so and I’m guessing the next two or three weeks will give us all kinds of stuff to talk about.
I got no indication last night when any Turkoglu transaction would be complete but if it’s getting to the point where it’s being leaked and talked about openly, I’d say it’s sooner rather than later.
And once it’s all done, we can dissect it more.
How about those teens, eh?
Not a bad showing at all, the bronze medal at the first age-group world championships (you can get some of the details by clicking here) and after talking to a couple of kids on the telephone Sunday morning, I’m thinking there should be a new catch-phrase for the good folks at Canada Basketball.
Hey world! We don’t suck.
That’s a bit of a joke but as Maurizio Gherardini put it to me in an e-mail after the game “No more doubts: Canada is also a ‘basketball nation’ and the world basketball community has found out.”
Now, this doesn’t mean they should or will win medals at any other competition but the foundation truly has been laid by these teens. They have established a level of expectation that other teams will have to try to live up to.
For the longest time now, there was a perception that Canada was one of the true weaklings of the international game, we hadn’t really had any big successes and it was always, always going to be a long road back. Kevin Pangos, one of the co-captains of the team and a kid whose name you should remember, said something on that conference call that really hit home.
He was talking about the after-effects of this medal and how he hoped it would translate into support for all the programs Canada Basketball runs.
And it got me to thinking:
Wouldn’t it be a wise idea for some company or person to attach his or her name to Canada Basketball right now and ride things out for the next six or eight years as all the programs grow? There is a feeling of unbridled optimism around the group these days – the boys did well, the juniors are really good and they are the next wave of talent – and I think some forward thinking company should leap on board now.
Anyone out there interested?
Teen girls, who start their world tournament in France at the end of this week.
And, yes, the plan is to cover them as much as we covered the boys.
Okay, I think it is merely a coincidence that after a day where I was nominally in charge of the sports department (and by that I mean I had to go into answer phones and accept e-mails) that the power was out all night at our Vaughn print shop and there seem to be no hard copies of today’s paper to be had.
Really, it wasn’t me.
Next world power in basketball? Korea.
Has to be.
Instead of playing a game in the Summer League (and I’m making a big X with my two fingers as I type “Summer League) the Raptors scrimmaged against the Korean national team Sunday morning.
Toronto wins, 100-77, but that’s not the big story.
In attendance, one of my guys tells me, was the legendary Lenny Wilkens, who’s acting as a consultant to the Korean program.
Like I said, next world power.
To a football neophyte, the World Cup was as much about the passion as the game and that means that the clunker of a final really didn’t bother me all that much.
But you have to love an extra time goal and be entirely overjoyed that such a big game didn’t end on penalties.
Can’t wait for 2014 and Brazil.
All right. One more day in the big chair and then a couple to sit around and chill on the deck trying to figure out what Bryan’s got up his sleeve.
Going to be a nice week, methinks.