Cue the scary music as we look at Gaines
A bunch of little items after a rather boring Thursday but games come fast and furious starting tonight so the slow time ends soon.
Now, this is scary.
You remember Sundiata Gaines, right?
He’s the kid who got called up from the D League by the Utah Jazz – the moment was captured on TV in one of those “behind the scenes” things -- and, after just one practice, he finds himself on the court, at home against the then-mighty Cleveland Cavaliers in the dying seconds of a close game. He drills the first three-pointer of his career to win the game and leaps on the scorer’s table to bask in the adulation of fans and teammates.
Jan. 14, 2010.
Jan. 14, 2011.
Wild stuff, eh?
Anyway, that little snippet of news aside, what do we make of his arrival on a 10-day deal yesterday?
Not a whole lot but it’s certainly some insurance, especially after Jerryd Bayless kind of hurt his ankle again at practice.
But the bigger concern they had when they picked up Gaines was Jose’s foot. It’s getting better but it’s not near 100 per cent and while they can manage his minutes and rehab and all that stuff when there’s time between games, it gets dicey when the games pile up and there isn’t a lot of down time.
And with a back-to-back starting tonight and one to finish the road trip next Friday-Saturday in Florida and games in New Orleans and San Antonio in between, they figured it was wise to have a young fella around just in case Jose can’t go or is hugely limited.
I still think they can get by with Bayless and Barbosa and that it’s going to take Gaines 10 days at least to get up to speed enough to play but they don’t pay me the mediocre bucks to make such decisions.
Speaking of the D League …
Hey, Solo’s back.
As we said all along, Alabi was sent down to Erie mainly so he could play in the D League Showcase – all the league’s teams gather in one place for three days of games – and he’ll be back on the end of the bench tonight.
No, he didn’t get really good down there; no, he’s not ready to play in the NBA yet; yes, I’m sure he’s glad to be back.
Oh yeah, more on Gaines.
Know who had a lot to do with Toronto’s decision to pick him up rather than any of the other unemployed point guards out there?
Yep, Darrick’s working in basketball development with the Minnesota Timberwolves – Gaines’s last team – and when the Raps called Darrick for info on the kid, he gave a glowing report about Gaines’s willingness to get a team in its offence rather than look for his own shot and for his character of the court.
And, funnily enough, I’m told Gaines will wear jersey No. 2 during his stint in Toronto; probably not in homage to D Martin but still kind of interesting in a “I have to fill out this blog with marginally interesting tidbits” kind of way.
Now, if the kid hits the lone three-pointer of the game in garbage time at the final buzzer, we’ve got ourselves a story.
As a wise man once said, not much good happens when worlds collide.
Sort of. A little bit. Not much but enough.
But it was nice talking to Popeye for 20 minutes or so on the phone and he promised to slap Sam in the head for me so something good came of it.
There is no way in the world anyone can feel anything but bad for Brandon Roy with the news yesterday that he’s going to have scopes on both knees and there’s no guarantee that’ll even work well enough to get him back on the basketball court any time soon.
It was always fun to watch him play – and hopefully will be again – because he was so good at controlling a game without being overly flashy, just the way I like it.
But it’s also worth pointing out that maybe someone owes some doctors a bit of an apology because all we heard around draft time was that there were concerns about his long-term prospects.
I really, really hope Roy gets back to at least something approximating what he was; I also think we should pay closer attention to reports before drafts now and not be so quick to judge.
What are you doing at noon?
The cool kids will be here to ask questions that I’ll try to answer.
Well I don’t know for 100 per cent sure how much a mess that team’s in right now but the decision to sit Rip Hamilton for an entire game the other night – a move Tayshaun Prince called “buffoonery” and that’s a word that should stick – can’t be a good thing to diminish any chemistry issues or clashes between coach John Kuester and the players.
And with that in mind, and with the Pistons having taken yesterday off from practice, here’s what’s in the papers heading into tonight’s classic struggle down at the arena.
Best thing about a home renovation? When it’s over Super Son has a nice subterranean room all to himself and I live a Wii-free existence.
Seriously, folks, some of you owe me mail.
And luckily for you, I think we’re going to have to have a day’s delay in its delivery thanks to the Saturday night game in Washington.
Like this fellow did:
Q: Hi Doug. In my mind one of the best stories of this years Raptors is Leandro Barbosa. Not only has his speed been so fun to watch but his interviews and comments seem genuine and thoughtful (including his comments on driving in the snow). Any chance he gets consideration for 6th man of the year award? Even if he doesn't, I hope BC keeps him around, he is the kind of player I love to cheer for.
Trevor B, Saskatoon
A: He has been quite a nice story indeed and he’s a very good guy. Just the other day, Zic asked him about Marta and when you can get an NBA guy to talk knowledgeably about women’s soccer, it’s cool.
Anyway, to your point.
As a guy who has cast more than a few post-season ballots over the years, I can tell you one hugely determining factor in any of the votes is team success so, no, I don’t imagine he’ll get any consideration whatsoever.
In case you were wondering …
Pats will roll, the Steelers should win and how cool would a Green Bay-Chicago NFC Final be?
You’re welcome for the tips, it’s what we do around here.