Last night we got a chance to see Ray Allen get snubbed by his former team, then go off on them for 19 points off the bench.
We also had the honor of seeing the Dirk-less Dallas Mavericks bring the new-look Lakers down to Earth.
The NBA is back.
On the brisk of a huge season opener tonight in Toronto; the Pacers will be without their star Danny Granger, who is battling a knee injury.
It’s a demoralizing reality for Indiana; but they still can’t be taken lightly. The Pacers have tremendous depth, and a very hungry/talented Paul George.
For the Raptors, Bargnani – who was questionable – should be able to start this one.
There are two sides to Bargnani.
The one who looked like an all-star a year ago; and the one who is insultingly lackadaisical.
The Raps need the former to show up tonight; because in the pre-season, we’ve only seen the latter.
As a whole though, no one can deny that the Raptors have been very grand during the pre-season. And although it is just pre-season; the signs are encouraging none-the-less.
As an organization, NBA team, and fan-base, we are all touting for this team to prove all of those NBA analysts wrong. After John Hollinger predicted the Raptors to only win 33 wins this year; Gary Payton injected more rage into Raptor hearts by saying that Toronto would win just 20-25 games all season.
The journey starts tonight.
And at age 20; Jonas Valanciunas will be one of the key pieces that is destined to lead this team to success.
Valanciunas has so far been everything we’ve hoped him to be. He runs the floor, plays defence, and works his tail off.
Tonight, he faces an ultimate test – guarding an all-star in Roy Hibbert. And make no mistake, Jonas will get plenty of minutes tonight. You know that whole ‘throw him into the fire’ tidbit that Casey and BC were preaching all pre-season?
Tip-off is at 7pm Eastern. Put your game face on.
And for those of you who are at the ACC, I better be able to hear you from my house.