Friday, July 27

Asian Prospects For The Raptors

This week , the Raptors appointed Masari Ujiri as its director of global scouting . Good . That means the Raptors are looking at other areas of the globe aside from Europe for new finds . Ujiri was said to be responsible for as much as 50 US college scholarship offers to African ballers and was previously the international scout for the Denver Nuggets. Maybe he was responsible for bringing former Raptor, Mamadou Ndye, to TO via Denver. By the sound of his name , Mr. Ujiri is a Japanese . Now I know why a Jap baller named Yari Tabuse was with the Nuggets training camp in 2003 before he made the Phoenix Suns line up in 2004 . That's what 'connection' will do . Also some years ago , Jim Kelly , the Raptors director of player personnel, tried to bring to the NBA a Filipino baller named Johnny Abarientos , then the premier point guard in Asia. Kelly ( right photo) was once a Manila resident and in fact has a Filipina for a wife . No doubt , Ujiri will open a lot of doors for African and Asian ballers here.
I bet one of the 1st job Mr. Ujiri is to be at the FIBA Asia Tournament set to start today in Japan . He'll see the Asian prospects there. It's important that the Raptors consider a prospect(s) only if the baller has a strong following in multi cultural Toronto. Unless of course the prospect is an exceptional talent. Let's see how each national team's players will fare in Toronto.

1. Middle East. Jordan , Syria, Lebanon and Iran line ups include good , strong and tall players but I doubt if these nations have strong followings in TO. Unless another Ron Seikaly (former Miami Heat) of Lebanon shows up here , it is highly unlikely that B.C. will be interested. But who knows . Inshalla .

2. Far East ( except China) . China is well scouted so no need to review its line up . Besides , the Chinese is sending their 2nd team in this tournament . China automatically qualifies for the Beijing Olympics being the host country.

Korea has former Trailblazer 7'3'' Ha and a host of sharpshooters. This country beat China with Yao in the lineup so it must be good. Actually , the Koreans play like China. They are deadly 3 point shooters. So instead of Parker , it's Park you may see in the future Raptors line up and then you will see all the neighborhood grocers in TO at ACC come game day.
India . Imagine if we are able to bring in a good Indian player . It will be a slam dunk here in TO as well as in India. This country is 2nd to China in population (1 billion ). I don't have to tell you how many Indian doctors , computer geeks and others are there in the city . Proof is Raptors' SuperFan (shown here in the photo with VC's Mom) . India's roster is composed of tall, lanky ballers and unless they are talking about Bollywood basketball movie , its not time yet for an Indian Yao Ming . Soon. KG's visit last year and the newly set up NBA office in India will have some impact. ' I can tell you that there is groundswell calling for an NBA in India ' said David Stern . So it's free curry flavored pizza at ACC then .
Phillippines. Possible .Their ballers play the way basketball is played in the US . Entertaining one on one basketball Why ? More than half of its national players are graduate of US NCAA colleges and universities. They are products of mixed marriages - Filipino and American . Filipinos are passionate basketball lovers (it's like hockey to Canadians) and they carried their love for the game in here. It's good for MLSE to consider including a Filipino in the line up . The 500,00 Filipinos in Canada. among them nurses, engineers and babysitters , will be glued to their TV sets or will be at Air Canada if that happens.

3. Former Soviet countries. Ubizktan, Kazakhtan etc. Unless they have a basketball Borat in their line up , Nyet . Their players are big but mechanical in their movement. Also , their players are more European looking than Asian .

But why would the Raptors care about getting a Filipino , a Korean or a Middle Eastern players . The Raptors don't even have a Canadian in its roster after all this year . Sigh .


Blogger Sam said...

i really thought BC would have made a run at maagloire. dude is tall, rebounds, plays better low post defense than anyone on the raptors, and has a decent back to the basket game.

i wouldnt mind seeing some tough, sketchy, gritty guys get added, the raptors are a bit...soft. inshallah

3:00 PM  
Blogger m24_m3_m87 said...

i cant help but wonder that my comment on last week's blog had some effect on this current blog

10:08 PM  
Blogger coach said...

sam : yeah . maybe those arabs ballers are tough. suicide bombing tough ! joke.
i read syria,lebanon and even palestine have naturalized or half amer. ballers in the fiba-asia basketball tournament.

m24 : yeah. i research the philippine team's line up . in fact , the phil. beat china in yestedays fiba-asia game. it must have some good players.

12:27 AM  
Anonymous Jake said...

got a chance to watch the philippines team beat some of cali div.1 players. they have great ballers like half-american/half filippino gabe norwood of george mason univ. other potential NBA players in the philippines team are cagoia, alapag, ritualo, taulava, danny seigle (wagner univ), williams (oakland), and raymundo.

4:52 AM  
Blogger mystery said...

Philippines sure has lots of tough and talented ballers. I'm from the philippines and i'm also an avid fan of NBA. Jayjay Helterbrand and Mark Caguiao are two of the most exciting tandems in Philippine Basketball today. There are so many players in the Philippines who have the potential to be in NBA.

One of the sad thing about Philippine basketball is that the players are somewhat old when they started playing in the league. To play in Philippine Basketball Association, I guess a player should be at least 23 years old.

Asi Taulava in his prime is comparable to Dwight Howard, Jayjay Helterbrand moves like Allen Iverson and Mark Caguiao style of play is like that of Dwayne Wade. To bad, they are on their 30's now.. quite old to be in the NBA. I wish that NBA scouts can see the vast potential of Philippine Basketball as soon as possible.

8:14 AM  

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