Is Toronto NBA Worthy?

So I’m sitting at the office, working away, ESPN Radio on quietly in the background and I hear Mike and Mike start talking about Bryan Colangelo and his comments recently to Mccown and Mr. Mcgoo (Shannon). The discussion between the two centered on just a couple of points, primarily, is Toronto a worthwhile market for the NBA, did Bryan Colangelo question Chris Bosh’s heart/integrity?

Now, to be fair to the hosts, this wasn’t a bash Toronto conversation. Unless total lip service, both guys said they love it here and that it’s a great city. However “No American wants to live there, in another country.”

So, what did Mike and Mike say? Here’s a brief summary:

First they played the parts of the Colangelo interview where Bryan discussed the inability to build around Bosh, and where he discussed that Bosh “may” have made up his mind earlier in the season about leaving and where Bryan discussed Bosh being cleared to play pending his pain tolerance.

After the clip, the consensus between the hosts was that Colangelo was at the very least suggesting that Chris Bosh quit on the team. At the very least they said, Colangelo suggested that Bosh may have checked out prior to the end of the season, which is to suggest that he quit.

Mike Greenberg then switched gears and said that he couldn’t get Bosh to discuss what he considers the “bigger picture” when he was co-hosting prior to leaving for Miami, and that is Toronto as an NBA Market. Again, both guys suggested that the NBA is going to “have to ask itself if it wants to be in Toronto.” They stated flat out that “no star wants to play in Toronto” and suggested again that “the NBA is going to ask itself if it’s worth having a team in Toronto”.

That’s where they both said how much they loved Toronto but…..

“No star wants to play in Toronto and Americans don’t want to live in another country”. They continued talking about much they like Vancouver but that “there are clear cultural and economic differences.”

They stayed on the topic and reiterated that “no player will become a star while playing in Toronto.”

Now, before you mention Vince Carter, Mike and Mike went there too:

“Vince Carter was a star in Toronto but he would have been a bigger start in a US market.”

They said that it was clear Bosh want’s to be a star and perhaps he realized that wasn’t going to happen in Toronto.

The conversation then changed to Colangelo’s comments on Bosh. With respect to Colangelo’s commenting on Bosh being cleared to play pending his tolerance (to pain) and not doing so for several games, they said at the very least Colangelo was question Bosh’s heart and perhaps integrity. Mike and Mike talked about the timing of the decision on Bosh not to play, how the Raptors perhaps could have made the playoffs if he had played and whether Bosh may have been thinking about where he was going next season at the point, or at least Colangelo’s suggestion of such was an attack on Bosh’s integrity.

That concluded the discussion until they read an email from a listener who suggested that compared Colangelo’s comments to those of Cleveland Cavalier’s owner Dan Gilbert’s infamous Comic Sans note. They discussed whether or not the comments were or weren’t similar, whether Colangelo should have made them and the obvious reasons why neither Gilbert or Colangelo could have made them during the season or “courting” period.

Will try to track any reaction.

Here’s my only comment the Raptors had the 14th best attendance in the NBA (out of 30). in 2009, they were 10th in attendance. In 2007 they were 9th. Their tv numbers are good. While there is a decline at least in terms of rank, that doesn’t suggest to me a market in which a league would be concerned. By comparison, over the same 3 seasons, the Pacers and Grizzlies have been in the bottom 5 of the league.

Just my 2 cents.



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