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The Future is Bright November 16, 2006

Posted by mcanis in Colangelo Watch.
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Forget the ugly start, dented expectations, underwhelming play and shoddy defence. The Raptors will win a championship soon. The proof, as they say, is in the pudding. The pudding is the video.

81-1 November 2, 2006

Posted by pardis in Bosh Watch, Charlie V. for Vendetta, Colangelo Watch, Raptor Watch, Sammy Watch, TJ Watch.
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I don’t know…it’s tough to say after that game.

To be honest, I was shocked that they were still in it in the fourth. They were being thoroughly outplayed by the Nets on both ends. My take is that they lost their grip on the game at the end of the third, when Jose came in for TJ. TJ was dominating, and the Raps, our Raps, were up. But Jose slowed the game down, and they went down by four going into the fourth.

The turning point, though, came in the fourth when TJ cleanly stole the ball from Kidd as he was coming down the lane on a fastbreak. Now, this was a clean steal and TJ was heading the other way, with clear possession of the ball. The ref blew his whistle, though, called it inadvertent, and then gave the ball to the Nets!

WTF?

The Nets hit a three on the next play as part of a 15-6 run, and the Raps were out of the game.

Brutal.

Bosh played like crap, Garbajosa couldn’t hit the wide side of a barn, PJ Tucker was questionably getting quality minutes down the stretch, Fred Jones did nothing memorable, and Joey Graham, the guy all the “experts” thought the Raps should have drafted instead of Charlie V, needs to be traded while other GMs still believe he has an upside.

TJ was another story. He was Skip to my Lou at Rucker. He was toying with the Nets defence, and got to the hoop whenever he wanted. He just didn’t do it enough. If BC wants this to be Phoenix North, then he needs to get Sammy to let TJ loose – let him call the plays, let him run the offense, and trusthim. If he does that, TDot will do just fine.

If they don’t, then I can only pray that Charlie V’s performance last night was an aberration.

Like selling ice to…someone who doesn’t need ice October 17, 2006

Posted by pardis in Bargnani Watch, Bosh Watch, Raptor Watch, Sammy Watch, TJ Watch.
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OK, let’s get a few things straight, here.

First of all, the preseason doesn’t actually mean anything. It doesn’t matter that the Raptors are unbeaten because they’re playing 20 guys and their opponents are playing 25, and the Raptors are playing to win while their opponents are playing their fourth strings.

So we still don’t know anything about anything. They might be good, they might not. Don’t get suckered in.

Second of all, this season is wrought with the most anticipation since Olajuwon’s first year north. We all believe, which is a nice change. And the preseason is only fueling that. Seeing TJ average 80 assists and knowing PJ is called Baby Mule because of his work ethic and seeing Garabajosa do all the things the Raptors never did and knowing that Bargnani isn’t a bust and hoping that Sam can pull this all together…it’s all just fueling our collective belief. And it feels good.

Third, we don’t know what’s going to happen. We don’t know how this big euroerotic experiment will pan out. We don’t know that TJ will stay healthy, we don’t know if Bargnani will become Dirk North and TJ Steve…North…and the Raps Phoenix North. We don’t know if PJ and Joey and Parker et al. can co-exist and support each other’s development. We don’t know if Rasho will learn how to run in time. And we don’t know how far Bosh will go. But for the first time in a long time, it looks like we do know that they’ll try. And that they’ll care. And that there won’t be anyone on the inside trying to tear the team apart. Now c’mon, that’s something to chear about, isn’t it?

It feels like we’re living through a basketball version of The Departed. Everyone’s on the edge of their seats, waiting to see what’s going to happen next.

Let’s hope for a less bloody ending.

All quiet on the Northern front… October 6, 2006

Posted by pardis in Raptor Watch, Sammy Watch.
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Everyone’s making this big hullabaloo about Mr. Mitchell being a lame duck.

Know this, Sammy – I got your back.

If something happens this year and you’re not offered a contract extension with Canada’s Team, don’t you fret. I’ll hire you.

I stand here, in front of all of you, and make that commitment loud and proud.

If BC doesn’t see the benefit in securing the employment of a Coach who isn’t afraid to challenge players with undeserved out of control egos, or engage in fisticuffs with overpaid players whose whining compounds how much they suck, then I’ll be glad to pick up the pieces and benefit from BC’s loss.

Snoop Sammy SamThis is a man who was able to go 26-40 after a 1-15 start. Now, if you ignore the poor start, that’s a .350 team! I mean, c’mon…there aren’t that many head coaches in the National Basketball Association who can lead their professional basketball team to a better overall team winning percentage, or record, over the course of a season. And even if there are 1 or 2 or 25 of them, none of them had extenuating circumstances or injuries to deal with, like the Raptors did.

I mean, when you look at the season wholistically, Mitchmeister Flex did an admirable job.

And that’s worth rewarding.

Haha. No, seriously…it was funny. September 19, 2006

Posted by pardis in Raptor Watch.
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So, some loser from Britain said that our beloved Raptors could win a championship if they moved to the Euroleague.

Ooh, quite! Very good, sir! Toptop and cheerio, then!

Idiot.

Snoop Davey DThe Raptors, our Raptors, will win a championship when we get a consistent effort on the court every night, and when we stop looking at Bosh as anything more than a poor man’s David Robinson. Snoop Davey D, you’ll recall, needed Timmy T to win, as, too, will CB4 need his own Timmy T to win. MoPete is not that person, nor was Mike James, and it sure as hell wasn’t TMac’s cousin. The verdict’s still out on Bargnani, but I have my reservations about the impact he’ll have on Canada’s Team.

Who, then, is the answer? Who will be CB4’s Timmy T? You got me. But I can’t wait ’till the day he gets his very own. And that, sir, will be the day the Raptors win a championship…in this league.

Why TMac is better: Reason #28 September 18, 2006

Posted by pardis in Vince Sucks.
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You know that story that psychologists tell about how Native Americans weren’t able to process what they were seeing when they first saw the European ships off North American shores? That because they had never seen anything like those ships before, because they had no experience, either direct or indirect, with anything that had that combination of form and function, they were literally incapable of seeing the ships. It was as if they weren’t there.

When Vince watches this video, all he sees is a blank box.

Life, or something like it. September 14, 2006

Posted by pardis in Raptor Watch.
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You know what’s nice in life?

Certainty.

It’s also rare.

But that’s all we want. That, and reason to hope.

So all I want to see this season is a team that plays every possession like it means something. BC’s outfitted the team with athletes. And lots of them. So we have enough guys that the starters don’t need to worry about conserving their energy. They can play all out, get subbed, the bench players can play all out, and then the starters can come back and play all out again. Just give me a sense of certainty when it comes to the efforts these kids will give us each night. If we just miss the playoffs or we don’t do as well as we hoped, I’m fine with it as long as they play hard. And when they do play hard, well then, then there’s hope.

It’d be nice to have that again.

Fixed Or Repaired Daily September 13, 2006

Posted by pardis in Raptor Watch, TJ Watch.
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So word on the street is that ol’ BC is trying to sign Mr. Hooker to an extension.

Now, I may only be an uneducated fan, but shouldn’t we wait until Mr. Ford plays a few games before we lock him up and limit our options by signing him to an extension? I mean, the guy hasn’t yet shown whether he’s a Fiesta or an F-150, and given his repair history, I’d be prone to wait until he’s established that he fits in with the team and that he can last for 82 games before throwing $30 million at him.

Don’t get me wrong. I have full confidence in BC and his decision making skills. I mean, look at how the Q-Rich deal worked out. And I have full confidence in the long-term durability of a player whose neck was broken. I’m just not sure that we should jump the gun, here. Maybe, just maybe, some due diligence is in order.

Then again, I’m just an uneducated fan.

Hey, ESPN – Get a Life. September 4, 2006

Posted by pardis in Around the League.
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The more ESPN insists on making content available to paying customers only, the more they risk losing their position as the premiere destination for sports content.

To be fair, the good stuff (Marc Stein) is usually available for free. So why bother making secondary content from Chris Sheridan “Insider Only?” It’s like allowing me to play against Jordan for free, but charging me to play H.O.R.S.E. with Jud Buechler (not to say anything bad about my man Jud – the original Mr. Instant Offence).

I guess the point is that I’d prefer to get all of my content from one site, and that using headlines like Expect fresh faces for Team USA ’07 makes me search out similar content from other no-fee sites, not pony up a subscription fee to ESPN for the right to read Sheridan’s take on the world.

So, ESPN, maybe you should nurture and coddle your readership rather than find ways in which to turn them away.

I mean, it’s just an idea. Do whatever you think is best.

How did BC know? September 3, 2006

Posted by pardis in Around the League, Bargnani Watch, Colangelo Watch, Raptor Watch, TJ Watch.
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Okay, it’s safe to say that Colangelo’s a genius.

Two, yes two, Raptors played a major role in getting Spain the World Championship – Jorge “Don’t call me George” Garbajosa and our man Jose “Don’t call me Josie” Calderon.

Maybe Bargnani’s for real, too. Hell, maybe even Anthony Parker can play a little. And maybe TJ really is Steve-Nash-North. Maybe, just maybe, all of Colangelo’s moves will pay off and we won’t have any Q-Rich incidents on our hands.

You have to think that with all the game time the Raps have gotten this summer – Bosh, Jose, Jorge, Slokar, and Rasho at the Worlds, in particular – that training camp will be more than “get back in shape” camp, and the Raps’ young’ns will fly out of the gates to start the season.

Let’s just hope they don’t hit a wall in January.

Regardless of what happens, BC’s street cred’s improving (Exec of the Year didn’t cut it) north of the border, and there’s legitimate hope for the season.

It should be fun.

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