A recap of the world of basketball on this regular, in no way significant regular Tuesday (in honour of today there will be a noticeable difference in the theme of this posting). The season is just starting to get its grounding and yet there's already been plenty provided to talk about, both on and off the court.
Surge in the Polls The Toronto Raptors have turned heads once more, winning their first 3 games in 4 days and resurrecting the talk that they will be a contender this season. While some are calling them sleepers others have been waiting for the Raps to finally step it up, so really any success they're experiencing this year will not be that big a surprise. Regardless what mindset there is about the team though, they looked real good taking down 3 teams that will not be slouches this season, and for the faithful it's a great start to the campaign!
Early Voting Results No better way to start out a congratulatory mention to the Raptors Chris Bosh than with a cheesy shout-out from the past. The first Eastern Conference Player of the Week Award goes to Chris Bosh - there was lots of talk about Bosh in the offseason, about how he may cement his place as an All Star after a successful Olympic campaign. This is a great start showing all the talk was definitely for good reason! Averaging 26.0 pts, 10.0 rebs and 3.7 assts in the first week of play Toronto's team leader was definitely a crucial component in the Raps breakout start to the season! (there's a good article by Michael Grange in the Globe & Mail today on the unfortunately redundant story of how everyone and their Grandma are courting Bosh right now...it appears this story will be as played out as LBJ to Brooklyn over the next few seasons)
Troubles towing the Party Line It's really a case of pick your poison in New York right now, while new Head Coach Mike D'Antoni tries his best to resurrect the Knicks franchise he seems faced with problems on all accounts. It really just comes down to what's worse: benching/not dressing overpaid basketball throwing machine Stephon Marbury, or watching your team record their lone block of the season coming in the Fourth Quarter of their third game. With Eddy Curry out and Starbury requiring more and more attention, neither seem to have any end in sight...
Foreign Relations Searching thru the ESPN website I couldn't happen but notice a Euroleague Top 10 Plays of the Week. It may have something to do with the recent rise in basketball talent overseas, or maybe perhaps the exodus of NBA stars (Carlos Arroyo IS found within a few of the Top 10 clips), but it's quite interesting to see that more attention is being given to the International Game over here in North America now (in the past you had to specifically search out the games, or more realistically the stats from past games, if you wanted any insight into overseas action). For the most part they just list the scores of games each week on the ESPN site, it's great to see that they're stepping it up a bit by providing a little more coverage.
MAVERICK! Give it up for Danny Granger, the young Indiana Pacers rising star shattered BOTH his front teeth going for a steal in the Pacers win over the Boston Celtics this past weekend - and just shrugging it off! In something reminiscent of a hockey feat of strength Granger just single handedly took basketball players up another level on the 'hardcore' charts
"As professional athletes, we've bled throughout our careers," (Granger) said. "We've broken bones, torn ligaments, busted teeth. It's part of the game. It's kind of fun when you do it, and you actually win."
Granger's refusal to leave the game after the collision impressed his teammates and coaches.
Danny, I'm sure I speak for the entire nation of Canada as a whole when I say "that's awesome!" After having to endure a player who would hurt his ankle while completing a routine layup, this is certainly a welcome sign to see in an NBA player!