Arsenalist

The Toronto Raptors Blog with an Arsenal touch

Proof that Andrea Bargnani is working hard this summer

Posted by Arsenalist on August 1, 2008

Andrea Bargnani working on his game

Andrea Bargnani working on his game

I’ve been known to read peoples facial expressions and judging from the picture above the Paul Bunyan look-alike muscled an offensive rebound away from Bargnani and then put it in for a 3-point play. Seriously though, aside from working with John Lucas and attending Tim Grgurich’s big man camp I have no clue what Bargnani’s been upto. Pete Newell’s big man camp starts off next week and there was some talk earlier in the year of Bargnani attending it.

In a HoopsWorld article from a couple days ago it was suggested that he could move out of the four spot and onto the perimeter which somehow is supposed to be a good thing. In a perfect world he would be able to defend the small forward position and score using his size on offense but realistically speaking he’s still a lot closer to a PF than a SF. Jay Triano alluded to two of Bosh, O’Neal and Bargnani being on the floor at all times which would mean there will be minutes for Bargnani at the PF as one of Bosh or O’Neal moves over to play center. Lest we forget Bargnani’s “natural position” is the power forward and so far in his Raptors career he’s been asked to play center.

I don’t think the difference between defending the C and the PF is much different in the NBA, both require him to box-out, rebound and use his quickness as an advantage. Last year a lot of fans felt that he was playing out of position and if we moved him over to PF it would fix a lot of his problems, I don’t buy that argument. At the end of the day he’s got to play big-man basketball and both positions offer the same defensive challenges and offensive opportunities, in fact you could make a case that he should be able to take advantage of centers more easily considering how they’re usually slower. Regardless of which position he plays Sam Mitchell has to try to use him as a plus point rather than a liability.

Anthony Parker and Jamario Moon were playing pick-up at some guy’s house and gave their thoughts on the Jermaine O’Neal trade. Both are counting on a “renewed” O’Neal to lead the Raptors this year. Parker gave his thoughts on ex-teammate Will Solomon joining the squad and says its another shot at the NBA for him after being very successful in Europe. Sure, whatever to not give the impression that we’re scraping the bottom of the barrel here. Jamario Moon will be heading down to Vegas again to work out with Joey G and O’Neal later in the month.

Resident fruitcake Mike Ulmer got to interview Nathan Jawai and once again failed miserably. My favorite gem from this interview has to be the question, Are Australians just like Canadians? No Mike, Australians marry kangaroos, eat their offspring and run around naked in shopping malls trying to set off fire alarms. WTF?!? You get a chance to interview a player, ask him basketball related stuff like his impressions of Mitchell, what he thinks of his teammates and other interesting stuff. Who cares if he thinks Torontonians are nice?

Jack Armstrong will replace Chuck Swirsky on the Fan 590. He’s paired up with some hockey coach just to even the balance for the puckheads. I might actually listen to a Fan 590 show after years of boycotting it because of their idiocy when it comes to covering basketball. Eric Smith is a fair enough analyst but after that the drop down is so significant that its not worth it.

The folks over at Rush the Court have compiled a list of schools which have produced the most NBA draft picks (Google Spreadsheet) and not surprisingly UCLA and North Carolina are #1 and #2. You might be surprised at #3, its not Duke. My Kansas Jayhawks are #8.

Could they have found an uglier picture of Bosh? On a non-basketball related note, this has to be one of the craziest stories I’ve read this year.

That’s about it for now. Thanks for swinging by in the summer time. A special thanks to the ArseBlog for linking it up.

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19 Responses to “Proof that Andrea Bargnani is working hard this summer”

  1. RaptorsFan said

    **** that story is insane.

    And lol @ Bargnani.

  2. John said

    Some very crazy people in this world.

    Every time I see a picture of the Italian I get the sense all he really wants to do is hang out, get paid and relax. Guess I would do the same if somebody would pay me big bucks.

  3. […] – Arsenalist […]

  4. nunya said

    Quote “Every time I see a picture of the Italian I get the sense all he really wants to do is hang out, get paid and relax. Guess I would do the same if somebody would pay me big bucks.”

    Toronto, where mediocrities are bred like fruit flies…..no one is going to pay YOU big bucks, John…to do anything…

    ….have you never seen pictures of any NBA players playing video games?? Have you never seen the All Star game Video game competitions? YOU get the sense?? you don’t have any sense you pathetic dweeb.
    I will bet that Bargnani actually plays a lot LESS than a lot of NBA stars, including Chris Bosh…American NBA players don’t need to spend the time LEARNING another fucking language.

    …nothing to do with whether he’s ever going to be a great player, who knows…HE DIDN’T DRAFT HIMSELF….just a reaction to how fucking lame these prissy comments are…

    Ulmer (and Swirsky) are the kind of lowest common denominator clowns that have jobs because far too many of the fans are cretinous Beavis and Butthead clones …if the fanbase weren’t so fucking stupid, he wouldn’t have a job….he SHOULDN’T have a job…they know that if “Raptorland” thought Swirsky was great, they’ll put up with any LOW BUDGET hack willing to do the job….after all, he’s “nice” and that’s what really counts in this

  5. Arsenalist said

    nunya with a very nice dose of reality. I think John’s being a bit harsh there. You’re right, he’s obviously a lot less “Americanized” and you’d think he’s not the type who gets off by seeing himself in a video game. I just hope he comes back strong next year for his own sake.

    It was frustrating watching him struggle last year and try to live up to the #1 pick but as you said, he didn’t pick himself.

  6. Raps Fan said

    hopefully he will be better at grabbing rebounds in real life then in nba 2k8. indiana is surprising. i would have thought arizona or kansas myself.

  7. Crank said

    WOW! In all the time I’ve been reading this blog this is the first time I’ve seen a picture on it.

    He seems bulkier in that pic, maybe he’s putting on some pounds and trying to move his game inside. I see Bosh playing about 35 mins and JO around 30. Even if they play together most of the time it still leaves Bargnani with 15-18 minutes at PF. If the goal is to let Bargs play 25-28 minutes a night, he’ll have to play approximately 10 minutes at SF. If Mitchell can hide his weaknesses well it shouldn’t be that big of a deal. As long as he doesn’t start him at the 3 like he did stupidly against Orlando. That was crazy shit, he had never played that position and hadn’t started in ages and Mitchell decides to test shit out in the playoffs. Thinking about it more I feel Sam should’ve been fired right after the playoffs.

  8. cuzzy said

    I bet Bargs powered up all his skills and is leading the league in every category.

    Great photo!!

  9. Mrmvilla said

    Wow… A little sensitive Nunya?

    Bargs does seem a little bulkier there. Let’s hope he tones that up! With that added bulk and some mentoring from JO, we should see some improvement… I know it’s a stretch, but he’s gotta break out this year!

    What’s happening in Vegas this month? Didn’t the summer league just finish?

    Cheers and keep up the Raps Summer chatter!

  10. Grumpy Fan said

    Regardless of whether he likes it or not since Bargs is to be on the cover of the Italian 09 NBA game for EA sports I would think he would be encouraged to partake in events like this to satisfy product promotion requirements of EA sports.

  11. FAQ said

    Bargnani is a ‘project’ big man. He played exceptionally well in his first season because he played his natural game .. potting 3-pointers. In his second season he was asked to slash, set picks and post up .. and he tried his best to convert his game in public view competing in the NBA .. on-the-job-training so to speak. He may not have satisfied exspurt Raptor aficionados expecting first pick performance, but he did try to his credit. Finally the Raptor coaches and executive brilliantly decided to send him to a big man training camp .. since he had no NBA mentor for 2 seasons.

    Now we will see what he does in his third season, and what role the coaching staff determines will be most productive for the team. He will either get minutes and continue developing, or he will ride the bench and most likely go back to Europe for a big contract next season.

  12. Dee said

    http://slamonline.com/online/2008/08/dynamic-nba/

    that should explain things…

  13. khandor said

    Dee,

    Nice find!

    The most pertinent piece of information?

    Straight from the horse’s mouth, so-to-speak.

    Bargnani: Four is my natural position.

    No more questions need be asked, re: Is Bargnani best as a Small Forward (3), in the NBA, or SHOULD the Raptors develop him (long term) as their Center (5).

    Chris Bosh is THE Center for the Toronto Raptors. He is their best Low-Mid Post scorer AND does the best job checking the opponent’s best interior Big AND is their best interior help defender/rebounder/shot blocker.

    Jermaine O’Neal and Andrea Bargnani are the 4’s on this team.

    Which is THE reason Bryan Colangelo … if he really is a Top Flight GM … SHOULD have kept Rasho Nesterovic (i.e. the perfect back-up Center to CB4, with JO & AB at 4), instead of including him in this summer’s trade with the Indiana Pacers.

    In general, players succeed in the NBA when given the opportunity to play meaningful minutes at THE position THEY feel the most comfortable … not the position the GM, or the head coach, or the fans, want to see them play.

    NBA GM Handbook, p. 101 (How To Lead Your Franchise To An NBA Championship, Eventually) :-)

  14. FAQ said

    khandor Says: Which is THE reason Bryan Colangelo … if he really is a Top Flight GM … SHOULD have kept Rasho Nesterovic (i.e. the perfect back-up Center to CB4, with JO & AB at 4), instead of including him in this summer’s trade with the Indiana Pacers.
    …………………………………

    So smarty-pants, who would you have traded for JO .. if you were the Raptor’s make-believe GM?

  15. FAQ said

    Dee Says: http://slamonline.com/online/2008/08/dynamic-nba/

    that should explain things…
    ………………………………………………

    The most pertinent piece of information in this interview is this portion of the interview with Bargnani and it should explain things:

    SLAM: Were you surprised that Josh Childress left to go play—

    AB: No.

    SLAM: I haven’t even got the question out yet and you’re saying no. You’re not surprised then?

    AB: No, because we’re talking about money. To play in NBA, you’ve got an average salary, four or five million. And Europe it’s much more. There’s no tax, and you’ve got houses, cars. It’s a good opportunity.

    SLAM: Do you think when your contract is up that European teams would ever make a move to get you back to Europe?

    AB: (kind of looks at me like I’m dumb) I don’t know, I have no idea. I like playing in the NBA. But if they keep going like this more players will go over there for sure.
    ……………………………………….

    There you have it folks … Bargnani will most likely jump back to Europe at the first opportunity for more money and a better lifestyle than in ghetto USA and dead Toronto. I wouldn’t be surprised if Bargs tanked the next season to be released by the Raptors so he can go back to Italy.

  16. khandor said

    re: SLAM: Do you think when your contract is up that European teams would ever make a move to get you back to Europe?

    AB: (kind of looks at me like I’m dumb) I don’t know, I have no idea. I like playing in the NBA. But if they keep going like this more players will go over there for sure.
    ======================================================

    IMO … AB is insinuating (by his look, according to the SLAM writer) that only an IDIOT would think that he (AB) is going back to Europe IF he (AB) becomes a TOP NOTCH player in the NBA (i.e. the world’s No. 1 League, where the $$$ is the most lucrative in the world) or that he (AB) would even think twice about foregoing Europe (i.e. where they pay EXORBITANT amounts of $$$ for 2nd tier ex-NBA players looking to cash-in despite their relatively poor skill level) IF he (AB) he FAILS to become a TOP-NOTCH player in the NBA.

    It’s a no-brainer, from Bargnani’s perspective.

    Become very good-great and stay in the NBA, pulling in the big bucks.

    Fail to become very good-great and head back to Europe, pulling in 2nd tier big bucks, in comparison to the best players in the world. :-)

    re: So smarty-pants, who would you have traded for JO .. if you were the Raptor’s make-believe GM?
    =================================

    I would NOT have traded for Jermaine O’Neal in the first place. :-)

  17. fluxland said

    Arse, can you ban the kids of this fine blog? Seriously, they ruin it.

  18. FAQ said

    Now that Barg’s nasal problems have been surgically rectified, we should see a higher level of activity from him … because gasping for air will slow you down. Athletic airways are a necessity in the NBA.

    As for flux’s suggestion … I always thought of him as a ‘kidder’ but not a ‘kid’ … so …..

  19. […] to Arsenalist for the gem of the picture of Bargnani working hard at playing video […]

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