Let’s talk about Andrea Bargnani.
As an Italian, I’ve always been over-critical about his attitude (not so much about his game, because he is so much talented). We’ve put so much expectations on him and we got disappointed so many times, but let’s face it from a more objective angle: he’s putting up some quite impressive All Star figures, as he’s averaging 23pts., 6.5 boards and 1.9 assists per game (all career highs), and he really should be alongside Stoudemire and Bosh amongst the best PFs in the East (I’m a Celtics fan, but KG doesn’t belong to the All Star Game anymore).
The “Rebounds issue” is a false problem. He is obviously not a true center, and the fact that Toronto persisted to play him like such in his first 5 years just proves how incompetent its management is. The last games clearly show that Toronto needs a scorer much more than a rebounder.
Bargnani is often compared to Nowitzki due to their similar offensive game, but their achievements are not comparable since Dirk always played with a true center (not to mention a competitive team), where Bargnani was asked to be the center he is not. Now that Johnson and Gray are taking up that position (I wonder how Bargnani would fare alongside a legit center), he can really put his true talents were they’re needed.
P.S. for American writers: quit joking about Bargnani’s “feminine” name. Andrea is actually the most manly name there is, since it literally means “very masculine man”. Its etymology comes from the greek “anér, andròs”, distinguishing men, in the sense of “males”, from “giné, ghinaykòs” which means woman.
From Pulp Fiction (Q.Tarantino, 1994)
Esmeralda: Butch. What does it mean?
Butch: I’m an American, honey. Our names don’t mean shit.
Actually, they do.
And yes, all female Andreas out there have a name that means “masculine man”. True story.