Bryan Colangelo made a serious mistake when he went public with comments which targeted the character of Chris Bosh and revealed the GM’s perception that the team’s former franchise player had allegedly “checked out” last season, sometime after returning from the mid-season all-star break … with his mind already set on not returning to Toronto, as an UFA this summer.
“I play this game as hard as I can every time I step on the court,” Bosh said. “On the back of my jersey it says ‘Bosh’ … The Boshes are hard workers. We have a lot of pride in what we do, in our jobs and in life.”
The Raptors fell from a playoff position at the All-Star break into ninth place in the Eastern Conference at the end of the season. Bosh and former Cleveland star LeBron James(notes) then joined Dwyane Wade(notes) in Miami as free agents this summer.
That ruffled feathers in Toronto and Cleveland, with Colangelo suggesting that the decision for the three stars to play together had been “brewing for a while.” He suggested the threesome started firming up their plans while representing the East at the NBA All-Star game.
Bosh claims he was still intent on getting the Raptors into the postseason.
“What’s so significant about the All-Star break? We were in the playoffs. And I wanted to play in the playoffs,” he said. “That’s all I thought about every summer.”
Bosh also clarified comments he made recently in the Miami Herald in which he called Toronto “different.” He said he didn’t mean that as an insult to the city.
“Toronto is different,” he said. “For one, it’s a different country. If you don’t know you’re in a different country when you land then something is wrong with your senses. That’s not to say that Toronto is not a great metropolitan city. It is a fantastic city.
“Different is not bad. I’m different. That doesn’t make me bad.”
Bosh also claimed his decision to leave Toronto was at the end of a long process and not something he had committed to before the offseason.
When first asked by a visitor to this blog to provide an accurate interpretation of the comments which Chris Bosh made in his interview with the Miami Herald, about the city of Toronto being “different”, this is what was written by yours truly:
July 28th, 2010 at 3:29 pm
re: “Toronto’s a great place, a fantastic city,” Bosh told the Herald. “It’s a metropolitan area, but you could tell you’re somewhere different. You could feel it, you could look at it, you can smell it. Everything. All your senses tell you you’re somewhere different.”
Whoever perceives this quote … with which I am quite familiar … to be a slag of some kind towards the great City of Toronto, or Ontario, or Canada, in general, might just have a feeling of insecurity regarding how “they” happen to feel about each of these things themselves.
From my perspective, I have no such insecurity.
What Chris Bosh said in those words is precisely true … and a ringing endorsement for the great City of Toronto, which is indeed “different” from other places and cities in the United States of America.
The key word to understand [there] is that to people like Chris Bosh … e.g. like the Great Bill Russell and Charley Rosen and scores of other well known celebrities … “different” does not equate with/mean “inferior”.
In fact … in many cases … “different” can and does equate with/mean:
at least as good, if not straight-up better
that still takes some getting accustomed to
because it simply isn’t THE SAME as home [i.e. what you are used to, whether it's actually "inferior", or not, in comparison].
Readers here should trust that I know very well the “differences” between living and working in Canada and ‘the good ole USA’.
Kudos to Chris Bosh …
1. For now clarifying the full meaning of his remarks to the Miami Herald, concerning the great City of Toronto;
2. For being a stand-up, straight-up person … of sound character;
3. For completing the initial phase of his pro career, as the most accomplished player in the 15-year history of the Toronto Raptors franchise.
For those who still question the sincerity of Chris Bosh’s efforts, on behalf of the Raptors last season … including Kelly Dwyer, who really should know better, given the amount of basketball he’s watched, over the years … understand that this may say more about the specific way in which “you” happen to look at the world than it does about the character, values and basketball ability of the team’s former Captain.
PS. Going forward from here … If you were a high end player, in the NBA, and an unrestricted free agent, why on earth would you now be eager to work for a President/GM who says these types of malicious things, after-the-fact, about a player/person like Chris Bosh, once he’s decided to work for a different employer?
PPS. If/when the Miami Heat eventually win their multiple NBA championships … with Dwyane Wade, LeBron James and Chris Bosh, as key foundation pieces … it will be yet another sad series of days for the Toronto Raptors franchise.