Bowen retires after 12 seasons Bowen was not the most obvious starter for a championship team early in his career. Drafted by Miami from Cal State Fullerton, he spent several seasons bouncing between clubs and earning little playing time.
But after his 2001 arrival in San Antonio, he found his place, eventually earning defensive player accolades and a regular starting job.
He said he hopes that will be his legacy.
“It’s not how you start but how you finish,” Bowen said. “I hope my legacy would be as someone that never was satisfied with just being where they were.”
A hollywood producer should make a major motion picture about the life and times of Bruce “Karate Kid” Bowen.
re: why he’s quitting now
Once a player like BB has in fact scratched and clawed his way to the top of the mountain, it’s an exceptionally difficult thing to do, to go somewhere else … where the people don’t know what you know about what it takes to climb THAT mountain.
[PLEASE NOTE: This is a link to a radio interview from Jun 17, 2009 which every Raptors fan should listen to, as it deals with Thursday's NBA Draft, the acquisition of Reggie Evans and the team's POV re: Chris Bosh.]
From the perspective of this corner, however, by doing so … they will, once again, be throwing away another golden opportunity to build their team into a legitimate long term contender for a Top 4 spot in the Eastern Conference, by not trading down to a Middle or Lower Spot in the 1st Round, while acquiring an additional pick in the 2nd Round, in a classic two-for-one scenario.
Q1.Why does this year’s Draft qualify as such an occasion?
A1. Because the players who fit best with what Toronto needs right now, as well as looking down-the-road a piece … possibly, to a life without Chris Bosh … are not perceived by others to be worthy of selection in the No. 9 position but will most likely be available in the Middle or the Lower section of the 1st Round, and/or in the 2nd Round.
Derrick Brown is a player with a tonne of NBA ability, at the Wing position, who should be there for the Raptors in the Middle of the 1st Round.
Xavier’s Brown has been coming on the last few weeks, benefitting from long arms (a 7-2 1/2 wingspan) good workouts up and down the first round, and the pedigree of bigs that Xavier has produced for NBA teams, including Brian Grant, Aaron Williams, Tyrone Hill, James Posey and David West. He’s active — “bouncy,” one personnel man says.
“Sometimes, kids get better and I think he’s one of the kids that’s grown with the process,” said a Northwest Division executive. “He’s been able to expand his game a little bit and show some of the things he couldn’t show at Xavier.”
Derrick Brown would fill their need for an immediate ”starter” who can score the ball, rebound his position and defend with solid athleticism and considerable length.
Did not play.
For the number crunchers …
Q2.When you look at these simple game stats, what do you see?
A2. A player who shot 43.3% from behind the arc last season … shooting three times as many treys than the year before [in which he shot three times as many as he did his first year in college] … scored at a solid rate of 1.42 PPS [i.e. higher than DeMar DeRozan and Tyreke Evans], and improved his Ast:TO each of his 3 seasons at Xavier University.
[PLEASE NOTE: Players who are capable of doing THIS, and reach the point where their ratio is above 1.00 have a HIGH Basketball IQ.]
In conjunction with his outstanding Wingspan, his solid vertical & lateral agility scores, his ability to do THIS:
on a regular basis, and the fact that he conducts himself like THIS:
when dealing with the media in a first-class way … say that this young man, Derrick Brown, “Is ready” to play in the NBA, right away.
When you couple a player like Derrick Brown with a:
you are talking about a serious increase in FIRST-CLASS athletic ability and NBA skill level that can immediately elevate the Quality Depth on the Raptors’ roster to the point where they could contend with the likes of Boston and Cleveland and Orlando, etc., in the not-too-distant future, either:
A. If Chris Bosh re-signs with their team;
B. If Chris Bosh is traded [for comparable parts] and Andrea Bargnani continues to improve, as their Center, moving forward from that point.
The ball’s been placed in Bryan’s Colangelo’s hands … for the sake of loyal Raptors fans everywhere … let’s hope that he doesn’t drop it, again.
Yesterday’s action finished with the following results:
which are slightly better than Day 1 but not where they need to be … just yet.
Overall, after Day 2:
Hopefully, the news will continue to get better today.
Mon Apr 20 2009
Game 1 – 2/Celtics vs 7/Bulls
As was said here two days ago … the strength of Derrick Rose’s individual game is a giant neutralizer of one Rajon Rondo for the defending champs. How Doc Rivers copes with this reality will be a key in this evening’s Game 2 of this series. It’s one thing knowing that your emotional center-piece is not going to be you your line-up in the playoffs and another thing altogether, lacing them up and taking the court without him, at the front of the line, wearing #5. The Celtics should be much better prepared for this evening’s tilt, from this standpoint alone. There is no Superman coming in from the Wings to save them. If they’re going to get to Round 2, they will a far better performance from both Jesus Shuttlesworth and Da Truth. Keep your eyes peeled, as well, for Bill Walker, as he presents one of the few options on the Celtics’ bench that can increase their size and athleticism at the Wings when Pierce and/or Allen-R need to rest. Can the Baby Bulls [i.e. Rose, Noah & Thomas-Ty] possibly perform as they did on Saturday afternoon, for a second consecutive game in the playoffs? 41-41/.500 suggests that it’s a stretch to think it likely. Expect the C’s to start much better this evening; then, ride the emotion of their home crowd through the balance of the 2nd half. The Bulls are young at key positions, and it will be difficult for them to maintain their concentration for 96 consecutive minutes, in enemy territory, with the champs at the ready and staring at 0-2.
Call: BOSTON [1 unit]
Game 2 – 3/SPURS vs 6/Mavericks
Everything about the San Antonio organization says that they will find a way to square this series, somehow, this evening. But, 6.5 points is a lot to give up … without Manu Ginobili, completely, and Tim Duncan being far from 100%. Can Coach Popovich pull another rabbit from his hat? You bet, he can … especially if he goes retro with the deployment of his troops in this series, i.e. MAIN PLAYERS: Parker + Finley + Bowen + Oberto + Duncan; KEY SUBS: Mason, Hill, Udoka, Gooden & Thomas. Matt Bonner has had a good season, and has provided the Spurs with solid points production from the #4/PF spot beside the Big Fundamental … but, that will do them no good in this series when what they NEED is to DRAMATICALLY IMPROVE THEIR REBOUNDING, at positions #2/OG, #3/SF, and most importantly #4/PF. The Mavericks are a veteran outfit that many have a tendency to forget were good enough to put up 67 wins just two seasons ago and lost in the NBA Finals, to D-Wade & Co., the year before that. Dallas matches up exceptionally well with their opponent in this series [especially, given the absence of Ginobili, and Pops' questionable decisions to start Mason and give only reduced minutes to the Karate Kid]. Even if they go down to defeat this evening, Dallas should have the know-how to keep it close until the final minute of the 4th period.
SAN ANTONIO -6/-105
Call: Dallas [2 unit]
There are those in Raptorville today who think that the MAJOR PROBLEM with this team this season AND going forward from here is rooted in the Franchise Player label, and associated Maximum Contract status, associated with a player like Chris Bosh.
In an effort to examine this MYTH, please take the time to look closely at the chart below:
COMPARING CURRENT ROSTERS [2008-2009]
[as of Mon Mar 02 2009]
San Antonio Spurs 40-19/.678 1st Southwest
Toronto Raptors 23-38/.377 5thAtlantic
[4 yrs] $20.6 M
[1 yr] $17.8 M
[3 yrs] $11.6 M
[2 yrs] $14.4 M
[2 yrs] $9.9 M
[5 yrs] $7.4 M
[2 yrs] $4.2 M
[2 yrs] $5.8 M
[2 yrs] $4.0 M
[2 yrs] $5.2 M
[2 yrs] $3.6 M
[1 yr] $4.6 M
[2 yrs] $3.5 M
[3 yrs] $4.3 M
[2 yrs] $2.9 M
[2 yrs] $3.2 M
[1 yr] $2.5 M
[1 yr] $2.4 M
[1 yr] $1.3 M
[2 yrs] $1.3 M
[1 yr] $1.0 M
[2 yrs] $0.8 M
[2 yrs] $1.0 M
[1 yr] $0.6 M
[2 yrs] $0.8 M
[2 yrs] $0.4 M
[2 yrs] $0.3 M
General Manager – RC Buford Head Coach – Gregg Popovich
General Manager – Bryan Colangelo Head Coach – Jay Triano
If you do, what you should then be able to see clearly for yourself is that THIS perception is, in fact, inaccurate.
The main problem with the Raptors is NOT Chris Bosh [or Jose Calderon for that matter] … at the salary which he earns … it’s the remainder of the names on their present roster below that BLACK BAR at the salaries they earn while working for this team.
When you look at the San Antonio Spurs, what you see is a blue-print for success in the NBA. To wit:
CENTER – Tim Duncan … is actually under-sized for the position he plays best. [hint, hint, Raptors fans : ) ] Outstanding character. Unselfish. A Leader. Knows how to play WITH his teammates. Is a very good rebounder. Smart, funny, likeable. Can face-up and score, if necessary; can score on the block, if necessary. His focus, however, is Rebounding and Team [not individual] Defense.
POWER FORWARD – inter-changeable parts, provided that he can hold his own on the boards, defend bigger than his size, stick open shots, and is smart & tough … see David Robinson, Malik Rose, Rasho Nesterovic, Nazr Mohammed, Robert Horry, Francisco Elson, Fabricio Oberto and Kurt Thomas
WING 1 – a multi-dimensional player who can score or slash or defend or rebound but is not necessarily a Superstar player … see Ginobili!!!!, Mario Elie and Sean Elliot
WING 2 – similar to Wing 1 but with a complimentary [rather than redundant] skill set; far from being a Superstar … see Bruce Bowen, Michael Finley and Jaren Jackson
POINT GUARD – solid size, good quicks; not a superstar but a player who knows and understands his role with the team, as an extension of Pop on the floor … see Avery Johnson & Tony Parker
HEAD COACH – tough-minded and experienced with a clear Vision of How the Game Should Be Played, plus the knowledge, will and cmmunication skills to make it happen
GENERAL MANAGER – knowledgeable and humble enough to stay out of the spot-light, putting the players and the coach on center stage; WINNING is what he’s about
Dislike them if you wish … but R.E.S.P.E.C.T. them you MUST, given what they have accomplished to-date without a DYNAMIC Superstar on their roster, in a market [$$$$$$] that is not New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Boston, etc.
NOTE: There should be no acceptable excuses for an outfit like the Toronto Raptors.
Everything that is the San Antonio Spurs was on full display in yesterday’s Game 7 vs the New Orleans Hornets …
* The steadfastness of their unflappable head coach, Gregg Popovich
* The stellar work of their Superstar … ‘The Big Fundamental’, Tim Duncan
* The big game readiness of their important role players, off the bench … Michael Finley (11 MP; 2-2, FGA; 2-2, 3FGA; 4 Rebs), Robert Horry (14+ MP; 2-4, FGA; 2-4, 3FGA; 4 Rebs), Kurt Thomas (7+ MP; 1-2, FGA; 6 Rebs), Ime Udoka (21 MP; 3-7, FGA; 2-5, 3FGA; 4 Rebs)
* The glue guy contributions of their two ‘lesser light’ starters, ‘the Karate Kid‘ (28 MP; 2-5, 3 FGA; lockdown D vs Stojakovic) and ‘l’Hombre‘ (32 MP; 2-2, FGA; 9 Rebs)
* The courageous play of the 2007 NBA Finals MVP, Tony Parker … who took and made the biggest shot of the Spurs’ season, thus far, with the game on the line
Craig Sager (TNT’s Sideline Reporter): You lost the first two games of this series, then your coach made a big change, he put the Sixth Man of The Year, yourself, in the starting line-up, you won 4 of the next 5 … are you comfortable with starting now against the Lakers this next series?
GINOBILI: I’m just comfortable winning …
“… as long as you understand the game, and you want to get better, and you want to win …” – Manu Ginobili
see the following vid-clips for further details …
it is going to take a very special team to dethrone the reigning NBA Champions.
The LA Lakers await … in what promises to be a fantastic playoff series!
Hardwood Paroxysm is disappointed in the San Antonio Spurs and, specifically, with the way Robert Horry set his back screen on David West, during the 4th Q of last night’s Game 6 victory over the Hornets.
A Series of Unlikely Coincidences What makes me the most angry about this is that they really don’t need to do these things. I don’t think the Spurs win because of these actions. They win because they play committed team defense, strike at their opponents’ weaknesses, shoot the lights out when they need to, adjust their phenomenally versatile offense to whatever attack faces them, and generally beat the crap out of teams with whatever is most effective. They don’t need to win like this. They can just go out, play their game, use their talent, and win championships. But for some reason, they don’t feel that it’s enough. Maybe it’s an obsessive need to hold on to their fading youth. Maybe it’s a simple dedication to winning at all costs. Maybe it’s spurred on (no pun intended) by their endlessly classy fan base that chanted “Horry, Horry, Horry” last night after Horry, intentionally or not, injured a star player for the other team. Whatever the reason, they have decided that this is how they will win. And they have won. And in the end, no one can take that away from them. They will always have the shine of championship rings to bask in, while the rest of us know the truth. This team’s legacy will always be slightly sullied by their dirty play.
If it looks like a rat, smells like a rat, and sounds like a rat, then you don’t need to make excuses about it acting like a tough hedgehog, or whatever else Mark Jackson wants to say. It’s a rat. Call it that.
And that’s the saddest part of all.
Spurs in 7.
In sharp contrast, however … this corner could not possibly disagree more vehemently with that perspective.
Bruce Bowen and Robert Horry are neither thugs nor dirty players.
Since Gregg Popovich assumed control of the Spurs’ operation, San Antonio has played tough, physical, make no excuses, ask-for-no-quarter-and-give-none-in-return basketball (with the obvious, and nauseating, exception of Tim Duncan’s petulent whining after every Personal Foul call) … that is characterized by each and every other team that has ever won a championship, anywhere, and knows exactly what it takes to get the job done, come h*ll or high water.
This is who Coach Pop is.
This is what Coach Pop’s team believes in.
This is what Coach Pop’s team does … over, and over, again.
And, if your team has ever won a competitive major sports championship, anywhere … you know THIS to be a simple fact, based upon your own personal experience.
Mark Jackson (NBA Analyst) got it 100% correct during last night’s live broadcast.
The screen Robert Horry set was not designed to inflict injury to David West but it was the THE type a player makes who is committed to winning.
The Spurs … led by Gregg Popovich … play hard, physical championship basketball, at all times … and, they play to win.