Archive for the ‘Joey Dorsey’ Category

With less and less to talk about in the dog days of summer in the midst of an ugly NBA lockout, ESPN provides us with a meaningless yet entertaining enough list, ranking NBA players from 1-500.

Only numbers 500-391 have been revealed thus far, but as you can imagine with a 60-loss team like Toronto, Raptors are popping up on the list already…three times to be exact.

What’s important to note about the list is that players who have signed overseas were not included, nor were 2011 draft picks who aren’t expected to play if there is a 2011-2012 season.

For the Raps, that eliminates the possibility of seeing Sonny Weems or fan-favourite Jonas “Rambo” Valanciunas on the list.

According to ESPN, 91 experts rated every player on a scale of 0-to-10, based on what they refer to as “the current quality of each player,” whatever that means.

Anyways, the worst of the worst Raptors, in 91 “experts’” opinions, are Solomon Alabi (497th), Alexis Ajinca (416th) and Joey Dorsey (406th).

It’s hard to argue with any of these Raptors rankings, and I was pleased to see that Dorsey was ranked ahead of Ajinca and amused to see that according to experts, Solomon Alabi is only three players worse than Eddy Curry.

While it seems awful to have three eligible players in the bottom 100, it’s really not that bad. Many other teams have at least three players in the bottom 100 as well, with seven teams, including the Blazers, Hawks, Thunder and Magic, actually having more than three players appear on the current list.

The NBA, where amazing happens.

The Toronto Raptors, where “our worst players can compete with your worst players” happens.

GO team!

Joey Dorsey and Reggie Evans

Joey Dorsey
Season stats: 43 GP (nine starts), 12.1 MPG, 3.1 PPG, 52.5 FG%, 47.7 FT%, 4.4 RPG

Considering the fact that he’s only played in 61 career games over just three seasons, I thought Joey Dorsey was still a lot younger than 27-years-old. When you look at his season and career thus far with knowledge of his age, you realize that he’ll probably never be more than what he was this season for the Raptors.

Sure, Dorsey was always ready to come in and help the young Raps in any way he was asked, and performed admirably when called upon. But at the end of the day, he was still just the fifth or sometimes sixth big for Toronto.

Read the rest of this entry »

You’re probably disappointed with the outcome of the Raptors/Jazz game last night. Even if you’re on team tank, when your team is tied with a chance to win in the final seconds, a furious finish like the one last night can hurt. I know. I get it. Because the ending was a little deflating, I thought I’d give you this to start your morning off right.

Allow yourself a moment to stop and daydream about a world in which you can spin, jump and slam like this…Wouldn’t it be nice?

(via @outsidethenba)

Postgame, DeRozan said he hadn’t had a chance to see his dunk yet, but that teammate Ed Davis told him he thought it was his best in-game dunk thus far. While teammate Joey Dorsey joked, “He got that spin move from me,” DeRozan said he actually got it from Tyreke Evans of the Sacramento Kings. Either way, it’s a beauty.

And… if that’s not enough, check this clip and pay attention to the last sentence that is said before the video finishes:

(also via @outsidethenba)

Getty Images

Dwight Howard and the Magic go whatever they wanted, whenever they wanted

The Raptors made a couple of changes to the starting lineup for tonight’s game. Linas Kleiza, returning from injury, replaced Julian Wright in a move that makes you wonder if the coaching staff prefers chuckers over a guy who plays the game the right way. Joey Dorsey replaced Amir Johnson in the starting five, in a move I actually understood. Dorsey is a better candidate to bang in the paint with Dwight Howard than Amir is, and Amir would likely find himself in foul trouble.

Now let’s get to the actual game.

The Raptors came out flat against a pretty good Magic team, and probably would have been run out of the gym if it wasn’t for Orlando’s poor shooting, which by the way, had nothing to do with Toronto’s defence.

DeMar DeRozan provided the only spark for the Raptors early on, as he attacked the basket and piled up 10 first quarter points. DeMar forced some tough shots, and took seven shots overall in the first, but his four trips to the line in that quarter alleviated some of that inefficient offence.

That the Raptors were only down by eight after getting out-rebounded 20-8 and shooting just 28.6 per cent in the first quarter was a minor miracle.

The Raps were even more outclassed in the second quarter, as the Magic got to the basket with ease when they attacked, and were given open jumpers when they wanted them. Orlando quickly opened up a 13-point lead, only to have that margin shrink to six by the break. Again, the Raptors found themselves in a very fortunate situation. They were in a two-possession game at the half, with a vastly superior team that was clearly out-playing them. It should have been a wake-up call. Instead, it was apparently an excuse to crap the bed in the second half, because things were about to get ugly.

After putting together a bit of a run out of the half, and cutting the deficit to two early in the third quarter, the Raptors seemed to hit a brick wall, as the Magic unleashed a fury on their hapless opponents.

Slowly but surely, Orlando’s lead grew in the third, and they enjoyed a comfortable 16-point lead going into the fourth quarter. I expected at least one run from the Raptors in the fourth, to make it semi-interesting for a few minutes. It never came.

The reality is that most of the men in black had quit at that point. Don’t be fooled when Triano and some players try to put an ignorant spin on it. They quit, and that’s the story.

A 16-0 Magic run early in the fourth made the score laughable at 91-59, and the scary thing is that the worst was yet to come. With most of the Raptors strolling up and down the floor without a care in the world, the Magic refused to let up, eventually making it a 40-point game.

DeRozan, Johnson, Dorsey (who left early with a knee problem), Ed Davis, Jerryd Bayless and Julian Wright were the six players that seemed to be legitimately embarrassed by what was going on, and attempted to do something about it. The rest of the team may as well have not showed up at all.

On one positive note, Julian Wright proved his worth, yet again. He at least put an effort in on the defensive end, rebounded the ball and showed more of that promising passing ability. Linas Kleiza went 1-of-6 from the field, but if you know anything about Triano and these Raptors, chances are Kleiza still starts Saturday in Miami.

If you really want to know how bad this game was from a Toronto perspective, look no further than Jose Calderon. The usually sweet shooting point-guard was 0-for-6 in 28 minutes. Ouch.

Speaking of poor shooting, how about the funk Andrea Bargnani is in? A 3-of-14 night in Orlando means he is now 13-of-51 over the last three games. If Bargnani was putting even an ounce of effort into another aspect of his game, maybe the team could live with this. But since he’s not, his lazy behind should be stapled to the bench when the ball gets tipped in Miami on Saturday.

To be honest, through two and a half quarters, I saw this game as a prime example of an elite team, or close to it, doing what they were supposed to do to a young, inexperienced, injury-riddled, lousy team. So I didn’t plan on ripping the Raptors too hard. But the display they put on in the second half had nothing to do with youth, experience or injuries. It had to do with heart.

And a team should always be lambasted when that is missing, no matter what their situation is.

Raptors Player of the Game: Julian Wright – 27 Min, 6 Pts, 3-7 FG, 10 Reb, 2 Ast, 2 Stl

Magic Player of the Game: Dwight Howard – 30 Min, 31 Pts, 12-21 FG, 7-13 FT, 19 Reb, 1 Ast, 1 Blk

Goat of the Game: Linas Kleiza – 23 Min, 4 Pts, 1-6 FG, 1-2 3Pt, 1-2 FT, 2 Reb, 1 Ast, 1 Stl, 1 TO (You could go with Kleiza, Bargnani or Calderon here)

For Toronto sports fans who may have tuned into the Raptors game seeking an escape after watching the Leafs get dismantled, your misery only grew in the first three minutes of this ball game. The Spurs, who have the league’s best record and have won 15 straight at home, ran out to a 10-0 lead against the seemingly over-matched Raptors.

Any basketball fan should know a 10-0 run to open a game is not what it seems, but any modern day NBA fan or Raptors fan also knew the possibility for this game to get U-G-L-Y, in a hurry, was there.

So imagine the surprise then, when after a quick timeout by Jay Triano, the Raptors responded with a 17-7 run over the next six minutes, and a 23-12 run overall to end the first quarter up by one.

Even the eternal pessimist would have to credit the young Raptors for keeping it close after their start against the superior Spurs. But even the eternal Raptors optimist would have to admit they didn’t anticipate the warm and fuzzy feelings to last.

Toronto put together one of their best quarters of the season in the second frame, outscoring San Antonio 30-20 to take a 53-42 lead into the half. What was especially surprising, and encouraging to see for Raptors fans, was that the Raps were holding the Spurs to just 35 per cent shooting in that first half. They were not stubbornly and foolishly trying to outscore the Spurs, but rather they were beating a better team, on the road, by playing basketball the right way.

All this made for an interesting second half, which most would agree, on its own, was already a shock.

You knew though, that at some point in the second half, the Spurs would make their move. It wasn’t a matter of if, but when. Over the course of the third quarter, the suddenly sloppy Raptors saw their lead slowly dwindle, but managed to keep some distance between them and the Spurs…for eight minutes, that is.

Suddenly, the Spurs ended the quarter on a 16-4 run, and within a matter of minutes, the Raptors had gone from up six to down six.

The fourth quarter was even worse, as the mighty Spurs simply imposed their will, and the young Raptors were happy to lie down and let it happen until they began to fight back again in the final minutes.

A recurring theme in the last two losses for the Raptors has been the disappearance of Andrea Bargnani’s shot. Bargs has gone a combined 10-of-37 over the last two games in New Orleans and San Antonio, and one would have to infer that if Andrea had even come close to showing up, the Raps might have two stunning upsets in their pocket.

A more troubling stat is Andrea’s minutes played over those two games. Despite shooting 4-of-17 on Monday, he was rewarded with 42 minutes. Tonight, Andrea’s porous defence and 6-of-20 shooting earned him 36 minutes. Triano was visibly frustrated with Bargnani early in the third quarter, but decided to bench him for a grand total of just four minutes. Now that’s how you send a message.

There is no question that these two games were defensive battles, for the most part. And so a big like Joey Dorsey may have had an impact down the stretch. Unless Joey Dorsey has suffered an unreported injury, then it boggles my mind to see him get just nine minutes, combined, over the last two games, while Andrea shot his team’s chances away.

What was that quote from Jay about making everyone earn their minutes this season, no matter who it was? I hope you didn’t fall for that one, Raptors fans.

DeMar DeRozan was a bit disappointing in the second half for the Raptors, as he followed up a 20-point first half with an eight point, 2-of-8 second half. Though it also must be said that DeRozan stayed aggressive, and obviously had a solid game overall.

Ed Davis was impressive, yet again, as he played within his boundaries, finishing with 11 rebounds and a couple of assists, while only attempting two shots. For the record, he made both of them.

Another positive for the Raptors continues to be Julian Wright. Wright was 1-of-4 from the field in San Antonio, but continued to play defence, rebound and like Davis, know his limits. Most of all, Wright showed his unexpected passing ability with a couple of mesmerizing dimes.

Lastly, I wanted to mention Sundiata Gaines. This was easily his worst game (though he’s only played three) as a Raptor. His stat-line will show you that he made four of six shots, but it won’t tell you that he wasn’t decisive enough, made some poor decisions with the ball in general and forced his own shot too often. It was the total opposite of what we had seen from him in his fist two games.

So the Raptors fall to 13-29, losers of five straight, with stops in Orlando and Miami looming. Can you hear “Tank Nation” rejoicing?

Raptors Player of the Game: DeMar DeRozan – 41 Min, 28 Pts, 10-19 FG, 8-9 FT, 3 Reb, 1 Ast, 4 Stl, 5 TO

Spurs Player of the Game: DeJuan Blair – 35 Min, 22 Pts, 11-16 FG, 11 Reb, 1 Ast, 1 Stl, 1 Blk, 3 TO

Goat of the Game: Andrea Bargnani – 36 Min, 14 Pts, 6-20 FG, 1-5 3Pt, 1-1 FT, 7 Reb, 1 Ast, 1 Stl, 2 Blk