Chisholm: The Bargnani/All-Star angle the Raptors are selling
Old 02-12-2012, 07:03 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Chisholm: The Bargnani/All-Star angle the Raptors are selling

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In the hours leading up to the All-Star reserve selections Thursday night, the Raptors PR machine was in full force, with stories and opinions popping all over the map about how, had Andrea Bargnani been healthy, he'd have been an All-Star reserve at this year's game. That line of reasoning goes that Bargnani - he of the 23.5 ppg average, 22.1 PER and improved defensive focus - would have used those individual improvements to sneak his way into the group of seven Eastern selections made by coaches around the NBA. It's a fanciful story and one of the few positive pieces flowing out of Raptor-land in recent days.

It's also pure fiction.

Look, Bargnani has played in 13 games so far this season. Thirteen! In those games, the Raptors are a sub-.500 team and have registered losses to New jersey and Washington. Look at the Eastern reserve selections for a moment and you'll see two different categories of players: established stars (Chris Bosh, Paul Pierce, Joe Johnson and Deron Williams) and key players on winning clubs (Luol Deng, Roy Hibbert and Andre Iguodala). Bargnani does not slide into either one of those groups. He's by no means an established star and his team isn't winning. At 6-7 (the team's record with Bargnani in the lineup), the team is only at a .461 winning percentage. Extrapolated over the length of the team's season, that only gets you a 12-15 record. While as of today, that would put you in the East playoffs, it hardly gets the attention of the coaches selecting the teams. Consider that guys in similar situations like Milwaukee's Brandon Jennings and Cleveland's Kyrie Irving also missed out and you see why the odds were long that Bargnani would have made it even if he was healthy.
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This may all sound really cynical, but it's not meant to be. This is very smart and proactive management of the narrative by a club that is very good in that area and is rarely credited as being so. For the Raptors to execute the kind of slow-burn rebuilding that they're (finally) trying to accomplish you need to be able to keep the fans and the media pushing as much positive narrative as you can. As the losses pile up and the young players look like they'll never get better (even though they probably will) it's up to the organization to sell the positive stories that exist beneath the surface. This week, Bargnani as the All-Star who missed his shot is a great story to sell. There is no way to fully disprove that he wouldn't have been selected to the team his year, and the fact is he was playing quite well when he was playing, but that is such a convenient interpretation of available information that it isn't hard to see the gears turning behind the scenes.

The point here isn't really whether or not Bargnani would have been selected as an All-Star reserve or not, though. It's that the team can sell that story and get it taken seriously. At the start of this season you had people calling themselves savvy for putting Bargnani's name into the conversation for amnestying, and now not two months later the team is able to successfully sell him as a potential All-Star. When people start asking Colangelo at the end of the season how he plans to get an All-Star to Toronto now he can say that he already has one, at a reasonable long-term deal, and that his job is to surround him with the right pieces. If Bargnani had been healthy and not made it to the All-Star team that narrative would have been a much harder sell, but with him effectively ineligible from making it the team is going to work that angle for all its worth.
Chisholm: The Bargnani/All-Star angle the Raptors are selling
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Old 02-12-2012, 07:16 PM   #2 (permalink)
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-good article
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Old 02-12-2012, 07:18 PM   #3 (permalink)
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-good article
Agreed. Pretty much bang on.
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Old 02-12-2012, 08:59 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Also a bit depressing. I prefer to think BC needs to get, if not an all-star here, a team that raises the level of each player to something of an all-star level. If the selling of Bargnani is what we have to look forward to then it's just more of the same coming. Can there not be a chance that all the lobbying could lead to interest in him that lmight and the kind of sweet deal for a rebuilding team that could bring long term success? I'd be happy if that was at least a tiny part of the plan. They've got to make some impression of the value here embodied in any player that can be sold.
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Old 02-12-2012, 11:44 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Lol... pretty sure Chris Bosh was an all-star on a number of shitty sub-500 teams. Makes no damn sense and Chisholm is better than this drivel. Find any other number of reasons Bargs doesn't make it but team record is retarded.
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Old 02-13-2012, 03:23 AM   #6 (permalink)
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ya the article has some truth to it but the fact is if Bargs never got hurt in utah he would have an allstar or on the list on espn of top allstar snubs

the 3 guys that i key on are igoudola, deng, and hibbert,

bargnani is a superior basketball player over these guys, even if you offered all 3 for Bargs you would have a tough time making that trade
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Old 02-13-2012, 03:26 AM   #7 (permalink)
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ya the article has some truth to it but the fact is if Bargs never got hurt in utah he would have an allstar or on the list on espn of top allstar snubs

the 3 guys that i key on are igoudola, deng, and hibbert,

bargnani is a superior basketball player over these guys, even if you offered all 3 for Bargs you would have a tough time making that trade
i would do that in a heart beat.
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Old 02-13-2012, 05:16 AM   #8 (permalink)
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i would do that in a heart beat.
Agreed! That's a strang quote...all 3?
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Old 02-13-2012, 07:05 AM   #9 (permalink)
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I don't think Van Gundy was paid by BC to say this:

MAGIC VIDEO: Van Gundy on All-Star Reserves

Last edited by prebozzio; 02-13-2012 at 07:08 AM.
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Old 02-13-2012, 09:09 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Normally I'd think the team would do the selling even, if not going to make the team, to keep the player's ego from wanting a trade, and to improve the changes of selection next year. If it feels like a player got a snubbed the previous year then they're more likely to be remembered and pick the next.
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Old 02-13-2012, 09:10 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by prebozzio View Post
I don't think Van Gundy was paid by BC to say this:

MAGIC VIDEO: Van Gundy on All-Star Reserves
Yeah - there have been several journalists and ESPN analysts who suggested Bargnani was on their shortlist for All Star before his injury as well. Chisholm paints a darker picture than the reality.
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Old 02-14-2012, 04:04 AM   #12 (permalink)
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wow JVG knows whats up

that guy pumps me up, such a straight shooter, nothign but respect for him
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Old 02-14-2012, 06:02 AM   #13 (permalink)
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I think Bargnani should be considered before Hibbert and maybe before Deng.
Winning or not, the effect Bargnani has on this club is huge. We only just began to adjust playing without him. Many of these late even games would be wins.
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Old 02-14-2012, 06:57 PM   #14 (permalink)
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JVG would love to have Bargs + D12 on that 4, 5 position in Orlando next year!
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Old 02-14-2012, 08:42 PM   #15 (permalink)
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JVG would love to have Bargs + D12 on that 4, 5 position in Orlando next year!
I think most coaches would like this, combination
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Old 02-14-2012, 09:29 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Agreed this is a good article however I would hope Bargs doesn't hear about it so his confidence stays high.
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Old 02-14-2012, 09:34 PM   #17 (permalink)
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It's not JVG, it's Stan Van Gundy
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