The biggest week in a long time has arrived
So, is this the biggest week of Bryan’s tenure with the Raptors?
You could maybe make that case.
A new coach – first time he’s gone outside the organization to hire one – should be in place any day, there’s a rather significant draft pick to make Thursday night and while it might not be as busy as his first summer, when the signings seem to come almost daily, it should be some kind of metamorphosis of the franchise.
The draft? Well, I think it’s going to come down to who’s there and then a choice between guys who can help more now or guys who have more promise in the future.
The two guys who might be able to step in and contribute immediately would be Brandon Knight and Kawhi Leonard and I know they’re both on the list, with Knight closer to the top that Leonard.
After that, I presume there are a couple of longer term prospects – Jonas Valanciunas and Bismack Biyombo – who are intriguing but probably not ready to step in a play a lot.
Personally? I still think Knight should be their guy but it’s hard to see a scenario where he’s there.
We’ll get into this more as the week unfolds but if it’s Irving and Williams one and two (and I’m not sure what order it’ll be) and then Kanter and Knight in some order at three and four, that’s going to make it a bit of a tough call.
I know one thing: Can’t imagine that Bryan’s worried about the nationality of the guy he picks and I sure wish none of you were.
We’ve always said they should take the guy they think has the greatest amount of talent and it shouldn’t – and doesn’t – matter what his passport says.
The Raptors have a private session set for today with Biyombo (they saw Vesely yesterday but I bet he’s a very big longshot at five) and that may go a ways in determining what they do Thursday.
Oh yeah, the coach.
Have to think it’s going to be Dwane Casey, unless something wildly unexpected pops up, and hopefully it’s sooner rather than later.
Bryan did say right off the bat that he’d hoped to have someone in place by the draft and time is running out.
Sure going to make it a busy week around these parts; all they need to do is leave my Monday and Wednesday nights free for Mighty Rockies action, thank you very much.
How come no one told me the MMVAs were on last night?
I would have looked for my little buddy Bieber.
Here’s a first sign that some movement may be afoot with the Raptors staff.
A report out of Ohio overnight says Scott Roth, who spent one season on the bench here, is being considered for a spot on Mike Brown’s staff with the Lakers.
No idea if he’ll get it because I don’t know how tight the relationship is with Brown and Roth but it is the first open sign that assistants here are actually seeking alternate employment for when their contracts expire at the end of this month.
As I mentioned somewhere in the mail bag on the weekend, history suggests that a new Raptors coach will surround himself with familiar faces and I’m not exactly sure how that’ll impact Alex English, PJ Carlesimo, Micah Nori, and Roth.
I wouldn’t expect many of them to be back, to be honest.
Before nodding off, spent some time with Treme and if they keep knocking off characters like John Goodman last year (although you could see that coming) and Steve Earle out of the blue, I’m going to be miffed.
And I can so see the dude from St. Elsewhere hooking up with Melissa Leo but causing much angst for her child.
Oh, yeah, got to catch up to this.
Remember last week when we mentioned the Canadian Cadettes, the group of under-16 who rolled through their first three games at the FIBA Americas qualifying tournament for next year’s Under-17 worlds?
Well, they hit a wee bump in the semis when they were beaten by Brazil but rebounded to blast Puerto Rico and they have advanced to the world championships.
Age-group worlds provide excellent experience for these kids, they get to judge their skills against other countries and can only help in their development.
It’s a long, long way from Cadette to senior team but the more times Canada can get out there in the world, the better it’ll be long-term.
It will be interesting to see how the junior men and women do at their worlds later this summer. And that’ll give me something to write about every now and then.
I swear I looked up at the TV yesterday afternoon to watch some of TOD and I saw Bronson Arroyo on hill for the Redlegs.
Guess that’s why they call the NL the Senior Circuit, he’s got to be about 192 years old, no?
Speaking of the draft, I’ve got to correct a bit of misinformation I put out here a couple of months ago.
The second-round pick the HOTH got in the Dallas deal is not for this year, they currently don’t have a pick after No. 5 but I’m pretty sure as the draft unfolds, Bryan will be working the phones trying to make some magic happen.
Oh, and I bet you’re all waiting to see who goes to the Bulls at No. 28 to find out if he’s better than James Johnson is right now.
Man, how time flies.
I was reminded yesterday that it’s been 25 years – a quarter of a century – since Len Bias died in what was one of the most tragic sports stories of my lifetime.
Not sure how many of you young ‘uns would remember the story: Great, great college basketball player out of Maryland, drafted second by the Celtics and the heir apparent to Larry Bird in what would another seamless transition from one Boston era to the next.
Two days later? Dead. Cardiac arrhythmia brought on by cocaine use.
I think it was a watershed moment in the intersection of drugs in society and professional sports, not a wake-up call per se but the first time a lot of people had come face-to-face with the dangers of that drug. It was a story that resonated, put a personal face on a societal plague.
I can’t write about it too well or with authority because I didn’t really know that much about it but you should read this piece by Bill Simmons.