How To Score 28 Points and Lose the Game For Your Team

Posted on November 1, 2010 | 11 Comments

Dear Mr. Bargnani,

I’ve been told I’ve been way too hard on you. I’ve been told that I’ve focused too much on your inability to rebound and play team defense and not enough on your impressive array of offensive skills. I’ve been told that you have such an innate ability to affect the game on the offensive end that it outweighs the things you don’t bring to the court. I’ve also been told that playing beside a guy like Reggie Evans, who inhales rebounds like Charlie Sheen inhales whatever the hell he inhales that causes him to makes such stupid decisions, will neutralize your rebounding liability.

So I have to ask…



Tim W.

Yes, the Raptors lost to the Sacramento Kings 111-108, due in large part to Bargnani allowing rookie center, DeMarcus Cousins, to grab two crucial offensive rebounds right over Bargnani, allowing Sacramento to score both times, including when Sacramento got their first lead of the game?

Think I’m being too harsh by singling Bargnani out? Did you listen to what Leo Rautins said when it happened both times? I’m not the only one.

The sad thing was that the Raptors were in control for most of the game. This was really their game to win or lose. It started to go south when shots that were dropping earlier stopped dropping. That happens sometimes and you can live with that. One bright side, other than Reggie’s continued dominance on the boards, was the play of DeMar DeRozan. Most of the time the Raptors struggled to score, he was usually on the bench. However much his jumper is still inconsistent, his ability to drive to the basket and draw fouls really made this team go, on offense. As expected, he had his hands full with Tyreke Evens, but he did a solid job on him when he was on the floor.

Another bright spot was Jose Calderon finally busting out of his slump, going 5-9 and looking A LOT more confident shooting the ball. And he continued to play much better defense. He’s still not a stopper, but he’s not the liability he was last season.

Kleiza was his usual self, scoring within the offense, being aggressive and picking up at least two travelling calls while trying to post up. Note to Linas: When you move your pivot foot, it’s called travelling. You’re doing it at least once every game. Watch the tape. Still he played well, again, and hit a very big three late in the game.

The bench, apart from Calderon, didn’t fair so well. Weems didn’t shoot well and got smoked by Tyreke Evans one too many times. Barbosa is looking worse and worse as the season goes on (yes, I know it’s just 3 games), and I’m seriously wondering whether he should just get the surgery on his wrist now. If he keeps playing like this, he’s not helping the team, and it’s not as if they’re fighting for a playoff spot, now.

David Andersen actually had a good game, but only played 15 minutes. Truth be told, he did allow the Sacramento big men to get inside too easily, at one point, when he got yanked.

Amazingly, Jarrett Jack had a +7 +/- rating yet had a pretty poor game on both ends of the court. Everyone who was talking about how Jack is obviously the best PG on the Raptors should be holding their tongues about now. He’s not going to continue to play like he has, but this is exactly why I wasn’t a big fan of trading Calderon away.

And now Bargnani.

The movie Annie Hall is probably a little old for many of you, but there’s a famous scene where Woody Allen is caught in line beside an opinionated loudmouth who he finally confronts. When the man claims to be an expert on Marshall McLuhan, Woody Allen pulls Marshall McLuhan from behind a poster who dresses the man down for not knowing what he is talking about. Although I’m not a Woody Allen fan, it’s a classic scene.

Woody’s last line in the scene is “Boy, if only life were like this.”

Well, yesterday, I, as well as a couple of other people, were arguing against this self-professed 20 year basketball coach who claimed that blocks are more valuable than rebounds. I, as well as a few others, were understandably shocked that not only someone actually believed that, but they had the responsibility of teaching younger people the game of basketball. I fear for the game, if this is true.

Well, this person actually stated that he’d rather have 1.5 blocks in a game than 4 rebounds. In what is beyond irony and bordering on divine providence (and this coming from an atheist), Bargnani blocked 2 shots against the Sacramento Kings and grabbed just 2 rebounds. If Bargnani had just grabbed 2 more rebounds, the rebounds he basically gave to Cousins, the Raptors would most likely have won the game. Not only is 4 rebounds worth more than 1.5 blocks, it was the difference between a win and a loss.

Sometimes, life is like that. But I still would have rather had the win.

Blogger’s Note: In my continued effort to get as much free Dropbox space as possible, I am going to give a short Dropbox tip at the end up every post. I will do this until I have the full free amount (10 GB). You can sign up and install Dropbox on your computer by clicking on this link or the one on the top right sidebar.

I signed up for Dropbox about a year ago after reading about it on this blog.Curious, especially when so many commenters chimed in about how great it was, I signed up and installed it. At first, I simply used it as an extra folder I would keep copies of things in. Nice, but not completely useful. What changed was when I realized that instead of keeping copies in the Dropbox folder, I simply would work out of that folder. I put my Documents folder IN my Dropbox. Now, everything I did was automatically backed up to the Dropbox server, where I could access it anywhere, including on my mobile device. Very cool.

So my tip: Don’t save copies to your Dropbox folder. Work out of it. That’s what it’s for.

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Join the discussion: 11 Comments


  • JoePanini

    I think you are being a bit harsh. I blame the loss on Triano. When the starters were all hot and had a 16 point lead, he decided to sub Bargnani and I don’t remember who else. Killing his hot run with nearly 20 points. He also took out DD who was also hot. When they both went back into the game, the lead was down to under 10. Bargnani had a solid game, apart from the last few rebounds… But it’s pretty harsh to say he lost us the game. And how about the fact that once again Bargnani was avoided on the final play… Which I don’t get. He should get the shot, when you score 28 points, 3-6 from downtown, you take the last three. You don’t go for Kleiza who went 6-16 or Barbosa who chucks long 3s. Or even a two point shot when 3 down…
    Anyways I was friggin pissed. HOW DID WE LOSE. C’MON. But yeah, towards the end I got pretty annoyed with Bargnani too. But now we are going onto a play-off team run, that we will pile up losses…. Oh well.

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  • Tim W.

    I don’t think I’m being harsh in the least. This is EXACTLY the reason why I constantly say you can’t win with a guy like Bargnani. How do you think him allowing Cousins to grab two crucial offensive boards right over him would have gone over on the Lakers, or Boston or San Antonio? Wins and losses are separated by plays exactly like this. It’s why you absolutely, positively need your big men to do the little things, like box out and rebound. Bargnani simply doesn’t do that.

    As for Triano, if you want to blame him for keeping Bargnani in the game, then go ahead. I certainly don’t blame him for taking him out. As for DeRozan, he was taken out because of foul trouble. Triano had nothing to do with that.

  • Nikita

    Man, there i was in my living room with a case of beer cheering myself hoarse for these dudes. It was a lively exciting game at the first half. Then towards the 3rd quarter everything went south. What in God’s name should we do with Barganani so he would at least box out his man. And he’s 7 foot tall, fahchrissakes. It’s downright criminal to be out-rebounded by Reggie Evans. And Reggie should be rewarded for such an outstanding job on the boards!!! Way to go, Regg, more power!

  • aaron

    ARe you stupid or is 6-16 and three blown assignments for 9 points in the last 6 minutes a good game. But 28 points on 17 shots cost the raptors the game. Maybe triano should have had evans on cousins?Tim you only look like your on a witch hunt and andrea is your witch. Andrea makes 10 million a year he isn’t paid to be a franchise player but he is with the raptors. Your embarrassing yourself

    “Kleiza was his usual self, scoring within the offense, being aggressive and picking up at least two travelling calls while trying to post up. Note to Linas: When you move your pivot foot, it’s called travelling. You’re doing it at least once every game. Watch the tape. Still he played well, again, and hit a very big three late in the game.”

  • malefax

    I think you have tunnel vision, Tim.

  • Michel G

    Kleiza went 6-16, had 4 turnovers, and collected 1 majestic rebound. And you say “Still he played well, again, and hit a very big three late in the game.” It’s getting hard to take you seriously Tim. And don’t bother explaining to me what a bad defender and rebounder Bargnani is, I know what kind of player he is. The exhibition game against the Knicks when the ball was rolling at his feet and he allowed Ray Felton to pick it up and stroll in for a layup says everything you need to know about our beleaguered Italian. He is what he is. You can’t manufacture heart. Except for his usual deficiencies, he had a good game last night and was the primary reason, along with DeRozan, why we had a chance to win.

  • Tinman

    Yeah, gotta agree with malefax, its becoming obsessive. I am actually pleased with what I have seen from te big lug, on both ends. Continued growth. He is getting better.
    Ironically, I agree with you assigning the blame on Andrea for the L in last nights contest.
    Move on.

    You know my take. This year don’t matter, at least regrding W’s and L’s. We will lose two thirds of our games this year, hopefully more. I want to see Demar continue to grow, Ed Davis to learn the system and Amir to learn to stay on the floor.
    Thos are our goals – oh yeah and the continued growth of your favourite whipping boy.

  • khandor


    One way that know you are on the right path is when certain individuals in the blogosphere begin to take offense to your viewpoints.

    Keep up your first-class work.

  • Tim W.


    Thanks. I must have been doing something right for a while, then. I’m amazed how people can apparently be so offended by your opinion that they leave a nasty message, but it doesn’t stop them from coming back again and again.

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