Saw that one coming a million miles away
That was kind of predictable, wasn’t it?
Best thing about it was that it was so predictable the Angst-O’Meter around here didn’t go off the charts.
A game of numbers
We all know from reading the intro to this lovely collection of unrelated points that it was the youngest starting five in Raptors history, right?
Need more confirmation?
Well, we all think of Derrick Rose as a relatively young player still, don’t we?
Rose has started 180 games in his NBA career; if you add up the totals of Bayless, DeRozan, Weems, Johnson and Davis, they total 179.
(Yes, I double-checked the math, I think I got it right).
Anyway, starting such a young group was certainly not anyone’s aim when the season began but things being what things are, it was what they were forced to do.
Ugly, at times, wasn’t it?
But that’s not the point either, really. This season was always going to be about developing youngish kids and letting them get a taste of what it’s like night after night. That was a tough lesson but maybe an invaluable one in the future in a couple of ways:
Maybe some of the young ‘uns will learn what it takes to win consistently in the NBA and will be fine in the future.
Maybe some of the young ‘uns never quite get it and Bryan moves them out.
Interesting either way.
One ticked point guard
The guy most ticked off – or at least the most vocal about it – was Jerryd Bayless, who dumped this on the assembled media horde after the game.
“It’s embarrassing. It’s just embarrassing. I don’t like it and I’m not used to it and it’s not something I’m going to stand for. We have to get better, it’s plain and simple. We just have to get better.”
Now, I’m sure there were other HOTH equally miffed who just didn’t get a chance to verbalize it but I guess it’s pretty good that Bayless did, maybe he morphs into the vocal guy on a roster that’s pretty full of silent relatively silent types.
Hmm, what else?
I’m trying to come up with a worthy third point and, truth be told, it’s not that easy.
Oh, right. How about Ed Davis?
Except for getting schooled every now and then by Carlos Boozer – not unexpectedly, of course – the kid had a pretty good game and the best part may be that it was his second in a row.
Learning how to handle back-to-backs, and having some semblance of energy on the second game, is one of the most difficult things for an NBA rookie to do and we’ve seen Davis come out strongly on the consecutive nights this week.
Now, he still has a long way to go but flashes are there and I know the coaches were privately impressed with the way he handled himself this week.
I also know they’re going to keep hammering him to be better because I keep hearing that he’s more than willing to put in hard work if someone’s pushing him; like a lot of kids, if you cut him some slack, he’ll take it.
So Sam comes back tomorrow and I’ve got a couple of pretend dollars to wager that he doesn’t pull a Mo Pete and go kiss the logo at centre court.
Can someone tell me if it’s a good thing when the yellow “ABS” light and red “brake” light come on in a Smelly Ford Focus while you’re doing 110 going down Hwy. 427 to the arena after getting off a plane from Charlotte?
Guess the shimmy-shake in the back end and the limping home on road shoulders and service streets to steal, er, borrow, Super Wife’s car would probably mean no, right?
Guess I’ve got a date with a mechanic today.
Here I was wanting to chat with my man KC last night to see how things are going in Chicago and get his take on the Bulls and, perhaps, set up a post-game soiree at this little bistro he and I (and dozens of other visiting writers) like to visit.
Well, that sure didn’t work since he didn’t see a minute of the game because he was in the back working on the Noah-has-surgery story.
But friends being what friends are, when KC hollered across the room that he was about to have to write a game story off a game he didn’t see, he got some help.
Raptors not so much.
Raptors not so much.
And with that kind of insight ringing in his ears, this is what he came up with.
Yes, I spoke with Chuck. Quite briefly.
Yes, he’s doing well.
Let’s drag this one out of the mail, shall we?
Q: Hey Doug. Notice these shoe commercials with all the retired athletes in them? It got me to thinking. How sweet would it be to have an NBA retirement league where all the 40+ players get together to show how they've still got game. I think the league could be missing a huge cash cow here. Imagine watching Malone, Jordan, Miller, etc lacing them up and going at each other at half speed. I'd watch that. I bet any nostalgic basketball lover would watch it. You could really cheese it up by having the broadcast split screen moves that they attempted now, and how they did it back in their prime. I'm sure someone has thought of this, no?
Colin K, Ann Arbor
A: I imagine some entrepreneurial type has thought of it and had the idea dismissed out of hand because (a) those guys are so beaten up, a lot of ‘em couldn’t get up and down the court and (b) if they could, maybe no one would watch the NBA.
Oh, and they used to do something like it on a smaller scale at all-star weekend with some kind of “legends” game that usually ended with a lot of winded old guy clutching various strained muscles and joints.
And that was still better than the rookie-sophomore game.
Now, some of you Irregulars may know that there have been times when nights have ended in with Jack Armstrong – and others – warbling the night away.
You couldn’t hear it unless you were at the next table but that’s all ending now.
Jack and Eric Smith, two of the good guys, are cutting a CD tonight (if “cutting” a CD is the right term, I’m more a “cutting an album” kind of guy) and I’m thinking it might be an excellent stocking stuffer.
It’s 13 Christmas carols, it’s called From Brooklyn To Toronto and it’s only $5 with all the proceeds going to the Raptors foundation.
I can tell you that Jack’s got some pipes, I can’t vouch for Eric’s musical talents but this could be something very cool.
They’ll be on sale at games Friday, Sunday and Wednesday if you’re interested.
And now that I’ve given them this huge plug, I’m hoping I can be a Doo-Wop Boy next year.
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