And further quotes from that interview…
‘If I play bad it is my problem but If Raptors lose each year then it’s several people’s problem.
‘I’m having my career and improving year-by-year. It’s the team that needed a dominant center more than I do’
‘I’ve never been coached by D’Antoni. So, I don’t have an opinion’
‘I am a basketball player. If I have to play in another city I will go. Otherwise I will stay in Toronto. It is my job’
‘I hear the rumors. If it is meant to happen, it will happen. I am ready for anything’
He’s as good as gone. Seriously.
Dwane Casey responded to some of these claims shortly after, saying that what Bargnani said to Gazetta was probably ‘lost in translation’, and that the Raptors are not in fact the ‘worst team’.
Casey said he’d ask Andrea about it after, but that he’d be surprised if that those comments were accurate.
You can listen to the audio of Casey’s interview here.
Mind you, Bargnani’s comments came before the Raptors slaughtered the Mavericks without him.
However, maybe his comment about being the worst team in the league is accurate.. Who would argue with him on that anyway?
But that’s not the point. The point is, you just don’t say that about your team. It’s not going to encourage anyone. Furthermore, the fact that he’s talking like this openly (about his team, possibility of playing in LA) is further proof that he’s done in Toronto.
I don’t know if he realized it or not, but the Raptors have been great to watch without him. Sure, they lost against the Nets – but it was an honorable loss. We don’t see those types of losses too often. Ed Davis was formidable – playing good defense, crashing the glass, and collecting 24 points.
Against the Mavs last night, they put together a tremendous defensive effort, and they also out-rebounded them 47-38.
Now, I understand that it would be childish to say that one game without Bargnani proves that we are better without him; but there is one thing that is very clear:
We thrive on effort and running the floor. It’s clear now that the Raptors do not trust Bargnani as a reliable team mate. They get visibly frustrated with him on the floor – his lack of effort, his ill-advised shots, and his lackadaisacle attitude.
Whether you’re a Bargnani fan or not, it is now clear that there is tension between Andrea and the rest of the team. After the game in Utah, the team was venting their frustration at Bargnani in the locker room.
Clearly, Bargnani doesn’t believe he’s the problem though. And maybe it’s unfair to say that he is. But since it’s evident that he is a very large part of the problem, it’s time to part ways.
It’s been seven years we’ve been waiting for you to awaken Andrea.
And do you know why we can’t wait anymore? It’s because you are completely oblivious of your deficiencies.
Completely oblivious that you leave your team mates for dead on every defensive possession – and then when you see them get posterized, you think it’s their fault and not yours.
Completely oblivious you let anyone and anything jump over your as if you didn’t exist to grab a rebound. Your problem is not a lack of ability; it’s a lack of awareness.
I for one, am going to enjoy this stretch of games without Il Mago. Let’s see by the end of next week just how much better off we are without him.