December 12, 2012 by slewfeet
Well, looks like the inevitable has happened and Amir Johnson has come completely unhinged. We all knew it was coming, with his rebellious hair and those gangster tattoos, but we were all too afraid to say something and look where it’s gotten us now.
Amir claimed afterwards (after being placated by Jose Calderon feeding him biscuits and singing a soothing lullaby) that his fit of rage was brought on by the interruption of his habit of giving the ball a vigorous rubdown before free throws, but my theory is that he was just indignant at referee David Jones outrebounding him and wanted to assert his dominance in the stat. Can’t have any scrubs go around thinking they’re better than him. I bet Ed Davis gets the same treatment every day at practice.
Besides, with the Raptors’ record now at 4-18 and still plummeting like a rock, he was probably just acting up in fear that the Raptors wouldn’t get another possession all game. Really, getting into a tug-of-war with the referee is perfectly understandable. Who knew if they’d ever see the ball again?
It’s not visible in the video, but that mouthguard toss actually hits Jones square in the back, making it one of the best throws Amir’s made this year. Pinpoint accuracy from that distance with an unconventional projectile in one try? It’s no wonder his shooting percentage is down this year; he must have been mistakenly practicing with his mouthguard this entire time. Rookie mistake, bro.
Amir has of course been suspended a game for his transgression, which probably has no effect whatsoever on the team. If the presence of Amir Johnson made a genuine difference in our chances of winning … well, it’d require us to actually have chances of winning. At worst, it means the terrifying prospect of Ed Davis finally getting the uptick in minutes he’s earned over the last few weeks.
Finally, can we take a moment to appreciate the performance by Jones at about a minute into the video? He feints Amir with his seemingly calm walk away, executes a perfect quarter-spin into just about as emotional and dramatic an ejection as he could possibly have made, and then doesn’t even bother watching the ensuing explosion. Granted, the effect is ruined a bit by the cutaway to him grimacing in disgust after the fact. “Was that a mouthguard? Gross, it’s probably been in his mouth!”
Wow, is that a one-armed hug he’s giving himself for reassurance there? It’s hard to blame him; he’s so shaken up and disoriented that he can’t even get past his sleeve. Poor guy.
Fun bits of trivia from the game:
- Mickael Pietrus returned from injury just in time for Linas Kleiza to succumb to a sore knee, meaning we remain at only one player whose natural position is small forward. On the bright side, it doesn’t matter which of them play because they all suck at basketball. I hear Pietrus is great at speaking French, though.
- Speaking of injuries, Lowry and Bargnani both left the game early on, spreading a thin lineup even thinner as the remaining players worked to compensate for all the missed shots they would’ve taken. A special mention for John Lucas III, who missed every shot he took (4 treys), had a turnover, and was outscored by 16 points in only 12:03 of time on the court. You can’t teach that kind of efficiency.
- Aaron Gray escaped his cage and actually managed to beat the opposition in the 8:38 he played, presumably because the Blazers had never seen him in their scouting reports before. Or possibly for the same reason you sometimes let small children score on you because they look like they’re trying really hard.
- Portland inexplicably found a way to go 0-20 from long range. At some point, you might think pattern recognition would kick in and they’d recognize it as an utterly futile effort, but apparently not. Of course, because they were playing the Raptors, it didn’t stop them from winning in a blowout anyways.
- Dwane Casey is a defensive coach.