2009 NBA Summer League round-up: Toronto Raptors
July 25th, 2009
– Paul Davis: Davis was waived by the Clippers to save some money, after being brought back for no obvious reason. Strangely, he didn’t sign anywhere after that, but he did appear on Millionaire Matchmaker, where it was determined that he showed an “immature” attitude towards sex. But he did win the heart of one spectacularly energetic pseudo-blonde:
(video removed by uploader; try this instead)
These. These are the things we must know.
– DeMar Derozan: The Raptors wings last season had all the athleticism of a grilled perch, so at least they addressed that. But I can’t say I’m overwhelmed with the pick. No word on what DeRozan’s attitudes towards sex are, or what he deems to be an “upscale” bowling alley.
– David Doblas: Doblas is a soon-to-be 28-year -old Spaniard with the usual Spanish problems with hair. (This is one thing I noticed when I holidayed there earlier this year; everyone has black hair, and they all bald at 30. Without exceptions. Good luck, David.) Last year for Bruesa-Gipuzcoa BC – the ACB team that you’ve totally heard of – Doblas averaged 9.2 points and 4.4 rebounds.
– Quincy Douby: I don’t know Quincy Douby’s amount of guaranteed salary, so stop asking. (Although I’m fairly sure it’s $0, that’s only an educated guess.) There’s not much reason for him to make the team, or even for him to be in the NBA; Douby may well be a versatile scorer with the ball in his hands, but he’s undersized, does not rebound or create for others, is not efficient, and is not a good-enough shooter to be ideal as a catch-and-shoot specialist. Go to Europe and start starring, Quincy. It’ll be easy for you.
– Carl English: Despite the name, English is Canadian, which is why Raptors fans have had a long-standing thing for him. But even though he finally got a chance to play on the Raptors team, he inevitably didn’t, as he signed a lucrative contract with Tau Ceramica before summer league began. The opportunity to be a key contributor on a big team, and to embrace the unenviable task of replacing Igor Rakocevic, seemed more inviting to English than the prospect of trying to beat out Quincy Douby for a spot on the inactive list. And I can’t say I blame him. (This is the reason why I think you should move to Europe, Quincy.)
– Ekene Ibekwe: Ibekwe (whose full name is Ekenechukwu Brian Ibekwe, which is pretty brilliant) is a former Maryland shot-blocker who developed some offence from last season. Last year in Turkey, Ibekwe averaged 18.6 points, 8.2 rebounds, 1.8 blocks and 1.8 steals per game, shooting 61% from two-point range, 38% from three-point range, and 57% from the foul line. He was never more than an 11 ppg scorer in college, so the breakout was quite unexpected. It’s certainly made him more interesting.
– Nathan Jawai: Jawai didn’t play for the Raptors in summer league, for the simple and obvious reason that they traded him to Dallas in the Shawn Marion deal. He might not make their team, though, because Dallas now has 16 under contract, with exceptions they still want to spend. Dallas still needs a centre, and there’s no denying that Jawai is one, but Ryan Hollins is better. If Dallas is able to make something out of the Shawne Williams/Greg Buckner/whatever else package, then maybe Jawai has a chance. But if not, maybe Colangelo can get his boy back.
– Demetris Nichols: Nichols was a member of the Bulls for over a year and $750,000, and in that time he did precisely zip. After that, he went to the D-League, and averaged 21 points per game for the Idaho Stampede, before getting a call-up back to the team that so raved about him for a bit, the Knicks. Nothing much happened there either, though, and after a workout for the Indiana Pacers, this is where he’s ended up. The Raptors probably don’t have a roster spot for him, unless they do the right thing and put Devean George to sleep.
– Patrick O’Bryant: The Raptors just agreed to bring back Rasho Nesterovic, and that’s a good thing. Had they not, Patrick O’Bryant would have been next year’s backup centre. And that’s not helping anybody. Three years in now, and O’Bryant still hasn’t gotten far in his development. He still fouls at an alarming rate, is increasingly sure of his own jump shot (which, admittedly, is getting better), is no stronger than before and is still mistake-ridden. He could use a dose of Smush Parker’s swag, more than anything.
– Smush Parker: Parker split last year between the D-League and China, and it’s the same old story. Plenty of athleticism and a decent scorer, but no good defensive effort, no lead guard abilities, criminal recklessness at times and too much swagger. Here’s a fun fact, though; Smush Parker and Tony Parker both really have the first name “William.” Good trivia. Write it down.
– Brent Petway: Brent Petway dunks, raps, plays defence and tweets.
– Shawn Taggart: Taggart was brought in late as Jawai’s replacement. He decided to forego his senior season this year due to the vague possibility of him getting drafted. He may have had a case, since Robert Dozier got drafted (albeit with the last pick), and it’s not like there’s much between them. But it didn’t happen, and so now Taggart is on the outside, looking in, where he’ll probably always be. If things go badly, he’ll always have his long-running detective series to fall back on.
– Roko Ukic: In the interest of speeding these things up a bit, yet also due to the powerful validity of the statement, I would like to sum up the life and times of Roko Ukic with the following quickfire repartee: Roko Ukic is not an NBA player. That is all.
I am continuously intrigued by the esoterica and minutiae of all the aspects of building a basketball team. I want to understand how to build the best basketball teams possible. No, I don’t know why, either.
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