Of good games and silly, silly comments
As entertainment goes, there’ve certainly been better ones than Saturday night but it was in doubt until the final minute, there were some excellent performances and, all in all, not a bad night.
The kid is coming around
There’s still a need for consistency and more offensive range, but the more I see Ed Davis, the more I like him.
One from early last night:
A couple of minutes left in the first quarter and he’s guarding Andray Blatche on the post. Davis is smaller and younger and not as strong but he held him off, forced him under the basket and into a difficult reverse layup that missed.
And then Davis collects himself, sprints down the floor well ahead of Blatche or any other Wizard big and finishes the possession with a dunk.
Little thing? Yes. Good thing? Yes.
When have we seen this before? Yikes. Looked up in the fourth quarter to see all three Raptor bigs on the floor – the first time that’s happened this season – and since I don’t think any of them have the ability to defend small forwards, and two of them don’t have the offensive game to play away from the basket, I’m presuming we’ll never see it again.
“We just decided we’d go a little bit bigger, make sure we didn’t give up any second-chance points late. We thought we could match up, Andrea’s guarded Rashard before … it’s not foreign to him and that gave us a chance to keep Amir and ED on the floor. We were sitting there debating who to take out and they were both having great games.”
One for the ages
Yes, that was as good as I can remember Jose Calderon playing in a Raptors uniform.
I presume there might have been games back in ’06-07 or ’07-08 when he was close but for efficient offence, very good defence – anyone remember John Wall doing anything of substance? – and running the team? As good as a game as you’d want.
No, they didn’t win and that’s what it’s all about but to watch was to see a guy at the very top of his game and it was fun.
A little bit.
Promised this one in the In-Game Bloggy Thingy and here you go:
I’m sitting there listening to the various distractions that go along with your typical NBA game and all I can think of a couple of times is:
What’d Michael say in the Post?
I can’t be reading Brian’s story on the Heat-Bulls game correctly here, can I?
Chris Bosh can’t possibly be saying that guys shouldn’t hustle for balls because, well, because you shouldn’t.
There’s no way he said this, right?
"C'mon, that is how guys get hurt, that is how serious injuries happen. You've got to watch people's legs. I know guys want to hustle and everything but we all want to play and provide for our families and have a job."
He had to be kidding, didn’t he?
In case you missed it, or didn’t want to read the link, Bosh sprained an ankle when Chicago’s Omer Asik rolled up on him when Asik was diving for a loose ball in the third quarter of their game.
Then he was upset at Asik’s play because, well, because it hurts maybe?
I don’t get it. I really don’t.
But, in an effort to make sure nasty things like freak injuries don’t happen any more, I offer the following rule changes:
Nasty bruises are unsightly.
No yelling, fans.
After all, who wants a headache.
Bubblewrap for all!
It might take away from the athleticism but what the heck.
I can almost smell the beignets at Café Du Monde.
And if I close my eyes really hard, I can visualize an Abita Amber or two.
But when I’m in New Orleans, I’m going to have to do the mail for tomorrow and I should get this one of there now to ease my load.
(I keed, I keed. I love the mail and you can click here to send whatever your little heart desires. Mash notes are, well, never mind … )
Q: Doug. Not a Raptor related question but rather NBA logistics and procedures. With the recent and pending sales of NBA franchises and the talk of re-location and the suggestion by the league administration that they frown on it. How is it that The Nets of New Jersey (Newark I believe?) are making a move to Brooklyn (seemingly) unobstructed by the league office. I know they have had many obstacles put up by various groups representing interests in Brooklyn, and presumably New Jersey, but I have not heard any objection registered by David Stern or the league office.
Have I missed an episode along the way or has this move just been rubber-stamped by the NBA? And how was it justified in light of their policies on franchise re-location?
Have I missed an episode along the way or has this move just been rubber-stamped by the NBA?
And how was it justified in light of their policies on franchise re-location?
Richard E, Toronto
A: Actually, it’s much easier than you think.
Just because you haven’t heard a lot of objections from the league or feel that it might have been rubber-stamped doesn’t mean a lot of hard questions weren’t asked at the board level.
But if an owner – any owner – can make a compelling case for moving his franchise, the league isn’t about to stand in his way.
And I’d suggest the NBA is far, far more lenient about moving teams than any other pro sports league. Charlotte to New Orleans, Seattle to Oklahoma City and, sadly, Vancouver to Memphis are moves that have happened in the last decade and I’m not even going to expand the list past New Orleans to Utah, Minneapolis to Los Angeles, and, sadly, Buffalo to San Diego.
The justification is always financial, these guys are as much business partners as they are competitors and if you’re costing the group money and have a chance to make more somewhere else, there’s a better than average chance your request will be granted.
But, trust me, there are a lot of questions asked behind closed doors before moves are made.
I don’t imagine Sundiata Gaines is going to approach Pops level or even Julian Wright level but if he plays the rest of this week like he did last night, you people might like him a lot.
He gave them 14 solid minutes, scored a bucket, ran the offence okay even if he had limited plays in his mind and, most importantly, he didn’t hurt them in any way.
And talking to Jerryd after the game made me wonder whether he’ll go on Monday afternoon so there may be more Gaines time in the future.
Okay, a wee bit of work to do for the newspaper, a noon flight down to NOLA and then, perchance, a walk along the streets down there listening to music and wondering if Super Son could get a gig as some jazz saxophonist so his dad could come visit.