In light of the fact that the preseason match-up between the T-Wolves and the Raptors was more or less impossible to watch unless you travelled to Minny Howland is left looking at the box score to see if he can find any worthwhile tidbits of information.
I won't try and pretend I can get more from a box score than anyone else and that's all I really have to go on for this recap. I will keep this short and sweet because later today Ray Bala will be posting an interesting read on a situation involving Canadian basketball.
It's great to see the Raps get their first preseason win and to see that CB4, although his minutes were limited, saw the floor and in a mere 11 minutes did some obvious damage.
Even with the return of Bosh, Triano still doled out minutes to every available player and outside of Rasho everyone, based on the numbers, played effectively. The only other player who seemed to struggle offensively with his shot was Jarrett Jack (2-7FG). Jack has been somewhat underwhelming to this point but it's much to early to be concerned. People know what he can do on the floor and I for one continue to have the upmost confidence in him.
Andrea Bargnani was once again the teams leading scorer. Andrea has been a steady force offensively thus far and hopefully there is little chance that he starts this season in a funk like last year. As was pointed out in the comments last night, the rebounding numbers were once again underwhelming. The Wolves have some solid rebounding big men which may have had something to do with it, but it looks like the Raps rebounded by committee with everyone grabbing a board save for Quincy Douby.
A couple of other stats jumped out at me. In no particular order -
- Hopefully DeRozan doesn't start falling in love with the outside jumper. Based on what we saw in Vegas he has the ability to come of screens, put the ball on the floor and create. This team needs more of this. Three shots from downtown? Too many.
- Evans got to the line 9 times...if only he could hit them on a regular basis.
- Marcus Banks looks to be playing some ok ball. Defensive Stance and I will be attending the game tomorrow and it will be interesting to get a first hand look.
- The Raps shooting percentage wasn't far off the teams free-throw percentage last night. Getting to the line 34 times in a game is very good (thanks to the replacement refs) but missing 13 of them is bad.
Finally, although there are lots of people out there claiming that Sonny Weems will never be more that bench fodder and will spend the year in the D-League I think he is making a pretty strong case to the contrary. Weems actually got the start last night (how is that for a message!) and based on the numbers didn't disappoint. Sonny was tied for second on the team in scoring, shot a very high percentage, had six assists, and had the highest plus minus on the team. Can someone tell me why we should be discounting this guy now rather than hoping the team has another Jamario Moon story on its hands? It seems to me there is not a ton of resistence between him and a key role ahead of the likes of Marco Belinelli, Quincy Douby and even DeRozan (provided the rook continues to toss up shots from outside his range). Who knows what the end result might be here, but to write him off is ignorant. My hopes are not unreasonably high and I don't think he is some sort of saviour but he does have some skills this team could use.
Next up...a strong Wizards team where the Raps defense will be tested.