As of today, July 10, 2013, Andrea Bargnani is officially no longer a Raptor. Believe it or not, I don’t have a whole lot to say about it. My thoughts on him, as a player, are pretty well known. If you need a refresher, you can read this, this, this, this and this. Or just read this quote from a column I write earlier this year:
Now, I’ve never understood the fascination with Bargnani. Yes, he’s a 7 footer who can shoot and has the ability to do things on the court most 7 footer can’t. But his three biggest weaknesses as a prospect were poor defensive instincts, inability to rebound the ball and the fact that he rarely ventured into the paint. Individually, these should be major red flags for any big man. Put together, they should be a massive neon sign that blinks, “Don’t draft me!”.
Despite what some believed, I didn’t hate him (I’m sure he’s probably a nice guy, from what I hear), but I never, ever felt he would become anything close to the basketball player many envisioned him to be. And it turns out I was right. For now.
And while I will enjoy not having to watch his particular brand of basketball on the court anymore (watching Knicks games was not high on my list before, I imagine it will go down now), I might be more happy about the fact I don’t have to hear his fans whine and defend him anymore.
Yes, it’s the Bargnani fans I will be most happy to see go. And I’m guessing a lot of them will leave, because most of them seemed to be more Bargnani fans than Raptor fans. And a good portion of them were as delusional as you can get. I had one commenter who would regularly leave derogatory comments involving Bargnani having sex with my wife. In fact I started automatically rerouting his comments to spam, and one day I checked the folder and saw he was still leaving them. What kind of person does that?
So goodbye, Bargnani fans.