Thursday, October 8, 2009

Observations from Attending Raps vs 76ers

I was at the game with Rachel (thanks Malin), and we were pumped to see the Raptors again, regardless of it being pre-season. Some observations:

  • DeMar DeRozan looks like a baby, as Rachel pointed out. Being there in person, you can easily tell he's the 'new kid', the 'young guy', etc. And he's wiry as hell - I thought his body was bigger, but that must've been pictures from he just finished working out. His athleticism is awe-inspiring. He had a sick, wicked, and nasty dunk on the breakaway, and every time he drives to the rim in general, it catches your breath.
  • Sonny Weems is quickly winning me over. I've only seen him in a couple of games, but he's hustling to death and is running the lanes at every opportunity. Of course a lot of that has to do with him trying to get minutes, but he's done no wrong so far. He's a legit 6'6", and has a big, wide body on top of that. Guy just looks huge. I keep saying he looks like Joey Graham, Rachel said he looks like a mix of Joey Graham and Antonio Daniels.
  • Bargnani played well in his limited minutes, and he looked like he wasn't even trying that hard. That baseline drive-and-dunk was the highlight of the game for me - it beats DeRozan's dunk because DD's was on a fast break and we expect that from him, while Bargnani drove from the corner all the way for the dunk. As soon as he started driving my heart skipped a beat in anticipation, and he delivered.
  • Marco Belinelli is awesome. He's all over the floor, has better handles than you'd expect, but what surprised me the most about him is his hang-time (seriously). It's not like Jordan by any means, but he had at least two drives I remember where he switched hands 2-3 times in the air and they weren't easy finishes either. Ginobili is one of my favourite players in the NBA, and Rachel admitted Belinelli's "got a little Manu in him". Also, his height always catches me off guard. He's taller than I think - I always picture him as 6'3"- 6'4", but he's definitely 6'5" almost close to being 6'6".
  • Reggie Evans forced a lot of shots. I don't know if its because he honestly thought they could go in, or because he was feeding off the crowd cheering for him and he just wanted to deliver the goods. The frustrating aspect of his game is when he dribbled down the floor on the fast break - and of course- it resulted in a turnover as he got called for a charge. Now, it wasn't one of those situations where he's way ahead of anyone else, which would excuse him for handling the ball - nope - there were plenty of Raptors right around him. Reggie Evans shouldn't ever take more than one dribble down the floor. Other than that, he was doing what he brought over to do - throwing bones and getting rebounds. Actually, its quite uncanny how he grabs offensive rebounds - you just don't expect him to - he's undersized and what not but in the first quarter alone it was like the ball was just pulling towards him like gravity or something. Oh, and he got a technical foul. Like Malin texted me, "you gotta love a guy who gets a tech at a pre-season game".
  • Calderon looked much better than last night's stinker. He even looked to be aggressive and get the ball down to the other side of the court as soon as possible. There was one play I remember, an alley-oop to Amir Johnson on a broken play/fast break where Calderon sensed Johnson's position to be, and just tossed it from around mid court towards him, and Johnson didn't even realize it till it was half way towards him - and to his credit, quickly jumped and completed the play. It was quite beautiful actually.
  • Amir Johnson gets me excited all over again for that Jerome Moiso, Jerome Williams, Keon Clark type. Long, athletic as hell, and even when he doesn't block shots, he definitely alternates them. And he follows the ball like its the Lord of The Rings; never gives up on the play and will get numerous tips and second chance points.
  • I was appalled that Rachel thinks Marcus Banks is good looking (can you believe it!!??) we were arguing over it, and it got to the point where I ended up saying Reggie Evans is probably better looking than Banks!
  • Your main man Primoz Brezec was in the game - and he tired to go at his boy Rasho Nesterovic as soon as he got on the court - to epic failure of course. Primoz was trying so hard to post up Rasho and do all these moves in order to score on him to no success, while on the other end Rasho just put up that soft jumper of his so non-chalantly and scored over Primoz, it was hilarious.
  • Marc Iavaroni is an intense dude. I caught glimpses of him several times on the bench yelling out defensive instructions - he just looked pissed, like, all the time. It was wicked.


  1. you DO realize that this is the second time youve commented on me thinking marcus banks is good looking, LOL.

    this is how MY mathematic equation goes amongst the three we compared:
    marcus banks > amir johnson >>>> reggie evans LOL.

    theres multiple > for a reason yo. thats all i gotta say haha

  2. It's so appalling it needed a second mention!