Lessons from the first three gamesWhat do we know after a 3-0 preseason start?
Preseason still doesn’t mean jack
As always it’s important to remember that the preseason, is like a movie trailer, just good for some solid entertainment if you're lucky. It may build your expecations one way or another. But really it doesn't mean squat. When you consider the ridiculous union rules that don’t let NBA teams practice more than 3 hours a day on court, it is shocking that these guys can perform together in any cohesive fashion at all. These guys have shown a knack for knowing how to play b-ball (i.e. no Araujo’s on this squad).
Roles players are us
This Raptors squad is chalk full of quality role players. It’ll be interesting to see how Sam Mitchell deals with this. Everyone is performing and trying to earn their way into ‘consideration’ for minutes. PJ Tucker led Texas in rebounding at all of 6 foot 5 (playing with Aldridge mind you) and after getting no minutes so far this year, comes in against Jersey and holds his own, en route to dropping 18 pts.
Our three point vacancy has been filled
Gone are Mike James and Charlie V chucking up bombs, in are Jorge Garbajosa, Bargnani and yes….Chris Bosh. Our bigs can huck it up from downtown. Again, It’ll be interesting to see how Sam Mitchell tries to take advantage of this, especially when our point guard can’t shoot. It should open up some room for the drivers (Ford, Jones, Parker? Mo?) and we should once again expect to be scoring lots of points. If we’re going to lose….at least we’ll be losing big.
Winning World Championships is good for the confidence
Who is this Jose Calderon? He sure isn’t the same tepid (dare I say pansy) from last year. He’s taken that gold medal from the World Championship and rolling it up into something quite smoke-able. Great news, as we’ll have someone to push T.J. and provide solid minutes at the point. Having Garbajosa around is a nice reminding for Jose that he’s sweet.
Raptors fans think we know something everyone else doesn’t but don't let this mess up your fantasy draft
The Raps are getting zero respect so far from the sports media, with many predicting we are still a 30 win ballclub. We have a brutal schedule up to New Years and then it softens up. I’m looking at 38-42 wins for this team. If we could hit 40, that would be solid. To make a run at he playoffs this year, .500 probably won’t do it and we’ll have to go on one heck of a late season run. Luckily we can roll with blind faith right now and say, we do have a chance.
But if you are looking for sleepers on your fantasy squad...yikes, it's tough right now to think of any Raptor with the exception of Bosh who is going to do much. Mo will get his, jack his three's etc. Garbage Man will have some night's where he goes 5-9 from downtown, but will put up average numbers at best. Bargnani will be all over the map. Tough to think you'll get much fantasy love from this team.
And last but certainly not least, the sweet new do on Chris Bosh is working.