Big Names, Big Day

Big Names, Big Day

By Aish Abid

“With the first pick in the 2012 NBA Draft, the New Orleans Hornets select Anthony Davis.” The exact words basketball fans around the world have been waiting to hear. Crazy news went down in New Jersey last night as dreams became reality for several guys. Well known for his brow, Anthony went first overall as he enters the world of basketball and business; not to mention, all the spotlight attention. Another big name in this years draft was Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, who makes his way to Charlotte this coming season at number 2. Kentucky Wildcats became the first school to have the top two picks and tied a record with six players taken overall in the 2012 NBA draft. One more name that I can not forget to mention, Austin Rivers from Duke University. You may know him as Doc Rivers son or just a great Duke baller, but last night he was New Orleans second pick, and he went tenth overall. Lucky Hornets getting two big names on their team, things just fell in place. Lastly, for the love of my own team, I would like to make a shout out to the newest Raptors, Terrance Ross [8th overall] and Quincy Acy [37th overall]. Congratulations to all the boys who worked hard to get here and welcome to the big league.



Free Agency Heating Up

Free Agency Heating Up

By Aish Abid

I am sure everyone feels the same way when I say I can’t imagine Ray Allen in a black and red Heat uniform, or even Mama Ray in a bedazzled one. Media, fans and the world can finally take a sigh of relief, because our big man Ray is not yet retiring. But, he is taking up Miami as an option during his free agency this off-season. The Heat and Allen are said to share a mutual interest between this deal, I mean come on; what team doesn’t want a shooting guard that fires 3’s like it’s no big deal and has been in the league for 15 years? A guy with this much experience could be getting paid a ton elsewhere, but the Heat are offering $3 million a year. Realistically, Allen would make a wise decision if he were to “take his talent to South Beach Miami” [LeBron James] and join the Big 3; due to his ankle injury, it wouldn’t be a bad idea to cut down his playing minutes and rest that injured ankle. The 36 year old would make an astonishing Big 3 of his own along with Mike Miller and James Jones. “There’s still a lot of basketball left in my legs, I know that for sure,” Allen said after the Celtics’ loss to the Heat in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Finals. So, we know one thing for sure, this guy isn’t leaving the league so soon.

Frustrating Game 1 for Ray

Frustrating Game 1 for Ray

By Aish Abid

The Boston Celtic fans not so impressed with the nearly 90 percent free throw shooter; Ray Allen, as he misses a free throw at the American Airlines Arena Monday night against the Miami Heat in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Finals. In the 93-79 loss against Lebron and the Heat, Allen played through a painful right ankle, while struggling to find his shot from all over the court. Last night, he missed six of his seven free throw attempts and had only 6 points. “I think Ray missed four free throws tonight. I don’t think we’ll ever see that again,” said Celtics coach Doc Rivers as he met with the media after the loss. Still, with much hope Allen spoke with the media with his Game 1 preformance. “I’m just trying to find my balance, I feel good over it, I’m just not in a great rhythm right now. I just know I don’t have good timing right now. The shot feels fine. If it’s short, I know that I do have less lift on it . I just take it day by day, trying to figure out what I’m dealing with. I do have restrictions.” said Allen. “That’s why we have a great team here, why we have each other. I believe you guys know what I’m dealing with. It’s nothing really to talk about. It’s like a battle within myself, I have to try to win. It’s a daily situation I have to deal with. This is the time I need to be out here to help the team win. When the season’s over with, I’ll have to deal with what I have to deal with myself, personally. Right now, it’s the playoffs and you play.” Ray Allen expects a better preformance Wednesday night for Game 2 against the Heat.

Season on the Line

Season on the Line

By Aish Abid

The Philadelphia 76ers look to force a game 7 tonight against the Boston Celtics; who are urging to advance to the Eastern conference finals. The Sixers coming this far into the playoffs has been a shock for everyone. This might be the last game the Sixers play this season, but in order to stay in the semi-finals, Sixers star player, Andre Iguodala must amaze the crowd and play a stellar game. Iguodala may not lead his team with points or assist, but he really stepped up this game this season in order to bring the 76er’s into the 2011-2012 playoffs as he has improved his points per game. If the 76er’s want to stay in the playoffs, Iguodala must be ready to put up as many points as he can.

Rajon Rondo and the Boston Celtics played their heart out in game 5 against the 76er’s to lead the series 3-2. Tonight, they are one win away from advancing to the Eastern conference finals. But, if they lose to tie the series 3-3, they will return for a thrilling game 7. Rajon Rondo recorded another double-double with 13 points and 14 assists and Kevin Garnett with 20 points in their 101-85 win over the Sixers, thanks to the help from Brandon Bass with a career night with 27 points.

Be sure to catch the Boston Celtics and the Philadelphia 76er’s back in action at the Wells Fargo Center tonight at 8 p.m.

Amir Johnson: Passion for the Fans

Amir Johnson: Passion for the Fans

By Aish Abid

If there’s one man in the league that cheers as hard for the fans as the fans do for the boys, it’s Toronto Raptors, Amir Johnson. Johnson was the 56th pick in the 2005 NBA draft and was selected by the Detroit Pistons. Since then, his career has led him to here, the beloved city of Toronto. Johnson began playing for the Toronto Raptors in 2009. In the three season he has been in Toronto, he has done nothing but good things for the remarkable Raptor fans. When an opportunity comes knocking for fan interactions, Amir Johnson is right there, front of the line. This season, Johnson has done outstanding things in order to give back to the fans of Toronto.On March 31, 2012, Johnson participated in the All Access at Real Sports; an opportunity to interact with fans and answer their questions.”I love my Twitter fans, I recognize some of them here today. Everyone on Twitter, I love.” Johnson answered when asked who his favourite person on twitter was. As the Toronto Raptors season came close to an end, Johnson wanted to do something that shows his love for Toronto and the fans. He held his second annual “I Roll with Amir” contest; where he treats the 25 biggest fans each along with a guest to a Raptors game and dinner. Once again, the event was a success. The fans attended the Raptors v. Hawks game on April 16, 2012 followed by dinner at ‘E11even’. Even with the season finished, Johnson could not get enough of the fans. He celebrated Cold Stone Creamery’s one year anniversary with the fans in Toronto, where he designed his very own Cold Stone Creation with proceeds benefitting the Remix Project. “This is my way of giving back to the community, doing certain things around the neighbourhood. The Remix Project was the one I found and I definitely like it, so I did something to give back.” Johnson said when asked about giving back to his fans. This year, Johnson was able to raise 2000 dollars for the Remix Project. By the passion and love he shows for the fans year in and year out, there is no doubt that Amir Johnson will continue to take part in opportunities to give back to his biggest fans. Toronto wishes Johnson the best of luck for the bright future of his team and hopes he continues to work his best. Happy Birthday Amir Johnson!

Interview with Amir Johnson on Giving Back.

Unexpected Turn for the Bulls

Unexpected Turn for the Bulls

By Aish Abid

Despite the Chicago Bull’s 103-91 win over the Philadelphia 76ers, the famous Chicago guard, Derrick Rose was helped off the court late in the opening playoff victory. The star will miss the rest of the post-season due to a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee. Rose landed awkwardly on his left leg and was forced to leave, with only two minutes remaining in the game. This could potentially be an injury that changes everything for the Chicago Bulls, although the Bulls have managed to lock up the number 1 spot in the Eastern conference standings even with Rose out for 27 games due to injuries throughout the regular season. This afternoon, Rose was able to score 23 points and 9 assists. Unfortunately, Rose’s season came to an end after crumbling down on court. Rose was taken to the hospital right after the devastating fall where MRI results were confirmed. Will the Chicago Bulls be able to carry out and continue to play strong without their reigning MVP? We find out Tuesday May,1 as the playoffs continue to game 2.


2011-2012 Season Wrapped Up

2011-2012 Season Wrapped Up

By Aish Abid

The Toronto Raptors wrap up their 2011-2012 season stronger than ever. Last night’s 98-67 win over the descending New Jersey Nets, concludes the Raptors record with 23-43. In addition to their phenomenal win, point guard; Ben Uzoh achieved the first Raptors triple double in 11 years with 12 points, 12 assists and 11 rebounds. Centre, Solomon Alabi, dished his first double double with 11 points and 19 rebounds, followed by Ed Davis with a career high of 24 points. “I promise you we will get better… thank you from the bottom of our hearts, and continue continue continue to stick with us because we are going to improve and we are going to make the playoffs next year.” Centre, Jamaal Magloire said as he promises to make a post-season appearance. The Toronto Raptors finish one spot above the New Jersey Nets at number 11 in the Eastern conference. This season the Toronto Raptors upped their game significantly with their defence due their new head coach, Dwane Casey. As Casey played an astonishing role for the team, it has been announced today that Toronto Raptor’s GM, Bryan Colangelo had extended Coach Casey’s contract for the 2013-2014 season. “We knew this year was kind of in the middle, but I think that we grew as a team, and that’s the step that we need to do next year,” Calderon said. “I think we’re not that far from being a really good team, with coach Casey everything is different. I feel really comfortable with where we’re going and what our goals have to be.” We look forward for the future of the Toronto Raptors as they continue to build and grow. “Looking forward to next year, and I’m excited about this summer, the possibilities,” Casey concluded. Next season, as Toronto brings in new athletes, the Raptors have high hopes on making it far and growing together as a team.

Ricky Rubio Injury Update

Ricky Rubio Injury Update; April 10, 2012

On March 9, 2012 Minnesota Timberwolves, Ricky Rubio suffered an injury after colliding with Los Angeles Lakers, Kobe Bryant.  Rubio travelled to Colorado for more than two weeks to undergo surgery in order to repair two torn ligaments in his left knee. Rubio met with the media to discuss his injury for the first time this afternoon, back in Minnesota.

Ricky does not know when he will return and has yet to confirm a return for training camp. He will not participate in the Olympics this summer as well. “I don’t know when I’ll come back,” he said. “The most important thing is to make sure when I come back it’s 100 percent. I don’t know if it’s training camp, I don’t know if it’s first week, second week. I don’t want to put a date. It depends how my knee feels.”

When asked, if he’s worried about begin the same player when he returns, he answered, “Of course, I always think in my mind what can happen, especially the first couple of days after surgery when you can’t move your knee. You just think about it, think about if you can come back. You just have to be strong and do your best to come back even harder. I love basketball. I love playing basketball. I’m going to do my best.”

“You always have to think about everything. You just have to keep the right one. If not, I think, ‘I got hurt, I’ll be out 6-9 months, maybe I won’t be the player I was before.’ It’s not the right thing. I mean, it can be. It can be that you are better than you were.”

Rubio will have a check up in four weeks in Vail with Dr. Richard Steadman, he will talk with his doctor about any updates at that time. At this point, Rubio is not sure if he will continue his rehab in Spain or Minnesota this coming summer, but by the sounds of it, he was leaning towards Spain.

“I don’t know yet. See how the knee goes. Everything after that, we’ll talk about it. I want to make sure my knee is 100 percent when I get back. I think being back in Spain is an option for my mind, especially to be with my family. But I don’t know yet.”

When questioned on what he thought the night he was injured, Rubio replied; “It was hard, because when I got hit in the game, I was thinking it hurts. I didn’t think it hurts to be out 6-9 months. But when they explained the injury I had, it was sad. But after seeing all the support from my teammates, all the players from the league, I was feeling good. I knew it’d be a long process. I just have to be positive.”

Rubio was asked about losing the season and miss this summer’s Olympics in London; “It’s going to be sad losing an Olympic Games, but the good point is that I played one already so I know what I’m going to lose. It’s hard. It’s going to be hard. Like I said, there’s nothing I can do to be there right now.”

“It’s hard to watch games and you know you can’t play. You want to play so bad. You just have to enjoy watching basketball, it’s the only thing you can do,” Rubio said. “This year was good for me. I learned a lot of things. It was a short season, but it was good.”

Ricky doesn’t want to look father than four weeks into his rehab schedule. That is when he comes off his crutches for the first time. Lastly, when asked if he thinks it’ll be closer to one or the other, he said, “I don’t know. The doctor said that he put nine months and everything that we take more is good. I don’t know, it depends on the knee. Everybody has knee injures, not everybody answers the same surgery the same way. I have four weeks now to take off these crutches that I start hating them. We will see.”

“We are a young team,” Rubio concludes. “We have to finish hard and show everybody what we can do.”


The Wait Continues

The Wait Continues

By Aish Abid

Minnesota Timberwolves 21 year old point guard; Ricky Rubio has had one astonishing but short season. Rubio was drafted 5th overall in the 2009 NBA draft from his hometown El Masnou, Barcelona. After the draft, the 6’4 guard from Spain decided that he did not want to go into the NBA immediately, and the media announced that Rubio would not come to the NBA until the 2011 season. Rubio’s father made public that his son would return to Spain for at least another season. Finally, the wait ended in the 2011-2012 NBA season, the long awaited European youngster finally made his debut with the Timberwolves. Rubio played an outstanding first game on December, 26 2011 against the Oklahoma City Thunder. As of now, Ricky Rubio is averaging 10.6 points, 2.2 steals and 8.2 assists per game. Unfortunately, in a 105-102 loss against the Los Angeles Lakers, Rubio collided with Kobe Bryant and fell to the ground holding his knee with 16.4 seconds left in the game. The rookie guard sustained an ACL tear in his left knee that night. It had been confirmed that Rubio would miss the remainder of the NBA season, and will also miss the 2012 Summer Olympics. Ricky Rubio played a very important role for the Wolves, taking them to the playoffs. Rubio has become one of the most popular NBA players this season, he achieved several accomplishments and played in the NBA BBVA Rising Star challenge in the 2012 All Star game. As we wait for Rubio’s return, he frequently updates his twitter (@rickyrubio9) informing his fans about his recovery. The recovery process is expected to take 6-9 months, so for the mean time; the fans will continue their wait for the rising star, and watch Ricky Rubio make his potential come back in the 2012-2013 NBA season. 


Posted in NBA

A Season to Remember

A Season to Remember

By Aish Abid

Heading into the playoffs brings us closer to the end of the Toronto Raptors season. The Raptors began their compressed season on December 18th against  the Boston Celtics and will play their last game at the Air Canada Centre on April 26th, 2012 as they take on the New Jersey Nets. As the lockout came to an end, preparations began to start the 2011-2012 NBA season. Many changes took place in Toronto for the Raptors. Dwane Casey stepped up as the head coach and new additions to the roaster were made, bringing in veterans like Centre; Jamaal Magloire. As the season went on, the Raptors experienced several ups and downs; forward, Andrea Bargnani due to a strained calf, missed 26 games and as of April 6th, the Raptors have lost two guards, both due to injuries; Jerryd Bayless who is out for the remainder of the season with a partially torn left oblique muscle and Jose Calderon out with a right eye injury. Toronto has signed Ben Uzoh and Justin Dentmon on a 10 day contract to replace Bayless and Calderon as they are not able to play. Although the team has suffered and fought through the season, they achieved many accomplishments. Jose Calderon took the number one spot for most assists for the Raptors, Andrea Bargnani worked his way up to number 4 for the most points scored as a Raptor with Calderon following behind at number 5. The team also executed a 3 game winning streak which brings the Raptors to the 11th spot in the Eastern conference standings.  At this point, the Raptors have won 20 games and lost 36. Going forward as the Toronto Raptors season winds down, we hope that the team returns stronger than ever for the 2012-2013 season.