Well I have always said it, no one asks how you win games at end of year just if you did. That being said, give Devin Harris that shot I think he makes it 9 out of 10 times. The Raptors were due some good karma in a season where they have had a lot of things not go their way. Thanks to the struggles of others like the Nets the Raptors at 9 games below .500 they still are very much alive for the playoffs. I had kind of written off their chances. But it seems they remain alive. That is the advantage of playing in the East. I heard a stat on Toronto radio last night that surprised me but likely should not have. In 7 of the last 8 years the 8th seed in the East has had a sub .500 record. One year the Celtics got in with just 36 wins. That was prior to the Big 3 obviously. I am highly conflicted if this is a good or bad thing. If the Raptors get in at an 8th seed what does it really do for the franchise long term? I can't come up with to many things. It would be different if this team had not been in the playoffs the 2 year prior to this. There is no question getting in as the 8th helped the Atlanta Hawks last year to this year. They also performed well once they got there. Some will say that well maybe the Raptors could do the same. But I have been watching the Celtics this year and if they finish on top I think the Hawks taught them a lesson last year that whoever they play this year will pay for. Kevin Garnett did say anything is possible and it is. But for the 8th seed in the East be it the Raptors or not, I am not liking their chances. Just as a pure fan you always want your team to get into the playoffs. It sucks to watch 16 teams play after April 15th with out your team. But when you look long term I can not find a benefit of the Raptors making it in as an 8th seed. Even if they were able to sneak up to 7th seed the challenge is almost as great. However despite all my thinking about all this I do agree with Chris Bosh in saying he is glad people thinking like me our not on his team. Players and coaches should always be focused on winning basketball games. It is for management to figure out the long term stuff. People that are covering the team tend to fall somewhere in the middle leaning to the long term and not the short.
So Will He Be An All Star?
I was pleased to hear the comments of Chris Bosh last night when the topic of the All Star Game came up. There has been a wide variety of opinion on if he will make it when the reserves are announced tonight. However the majority feel that Bosh will make the game including Paul Jones who visited us the other day. I have been quite concerned that he might not. It is not that I don't think he is worthy. I think he is more than worthy. I just was concerned that the Raptors record may hold him back. Danny Granger is in the same kind of spot as Bosh. The difference is that Bosh has made it 3 times already. I often wonder how seriously coaches who do the voting for the reserves take this task. There is no doubt it gets huge conversation with fans and in the media. I think and would hope that coaches take it just as seriously. Tonight we will find out who is in ans who is out and the debate will rage on who did not make it in the game. This process becomes almost more important in comparison to the game itself. It is a status thing as much as anything. When you can say you were an all star it is something you can take with you the rest of your life. Not unlike being a former champion in boxing. When you are old and people introduce you they can say this is Chris Bosh he was an All Star this many times. However having a ring that says you were a champion means just a bit more. That is something Vince Carter never seemed to understand. I was pleased to see that Chris did not take for granted that he would hear his name called tomorrow. It gives me some hope that I have not been wrong in my thinking about other things.
Here in 4 years?
Sounds like something for politics. A term in office of a president is four years. But this is about if Chris Bosh will be in Toronto in 4 years. If you listen to Jalen Rose he is done in 2 years. Eric Smith laid out a challenge to Paul Jones to try and get Jalen as a guest on Hoops tonight. Paul said he would try to make it happen. I would be very interested to hear from Jalen if he does get him. Rose has wanted a career in broadcasting for a long time and to boldly put his reputation on the line saying that Chris Bosh will be in New York in 2 years is a highly risky move if you are not certain. That is why Jalen sounding so confident concerns me. However at the end of the day Chris Bosh will be the one that makes that call. If you listen to Rose he already has. But I just can't see that being the case. If I was advising Bosh as an agent. Yeah I know fat chance. However the best advice would be to re-sign in Toronto. Because what happens after 2010 may be more important. The season after that the collective bargaining agreement ends. Given the state of the economy I think it is safe to say that will not benefit the players. So he should sign a contract with Toronto and get all that he can. If Toronto is not on a path to winning once the new CBA is set up or even before you can ask to be moved and walk away with a better contract. That is what Vince Carter did. It is really the best thing to do. I have mentioned all this 2010 talk could end up being much like the doomsday talk around Y2K. In the end it is still a year and a half away. You have people already saying trade Bosh based on this minor amount of speculation. What is it going to be like next year? A zoo and not one that I am looking forward too.
I will tell you this though. If I am wrong and Bosh bolts and leaves for New York or somewhere else. I am done getting behind players on this team. I am going to approach it like I would supporting a college team. I only will see the name on the front and screw the name on the back. I just can't be bothered getting emotionally invested in any of these guys if the end result will be they leave. Bosh is a lot of ways is my last hope in that not all athletes are like Vince Carter. I really have felt Chris is far different from Carter. However if he leaves and does the same thing as Vince it will be hard to make that argument and I would not bother wasting the time trying too. So I hope that Chris Bosh is here for far longer than 4 more years. I want Chris Bosh to be here for life. Well for the life of his NBA career. It maybe be unrealistic and not in the whole this is a business way of thinking. I don't care and you know what for fans it is not about a business for us. It is about emotionally investing in people and far to often having that investment get stomped on as athletes walk out the door. It is hard to be a fan in the modern sports world.
What Does #4 Have To Say?
Eric Smith tracked down Chris to find out what he had to say about Jalen Rose and his comments.
E.Smith Exclusive With CB4