Tuesday February 9 2010 – 9:49pm Eastern – Toronto, ON

The snow is starting to fall in Toronto … but that’s been a rarity this year!

However, the flakes that are falling reminded me of the weather story I stumbled upon while surfing around Yahoo earlier today (http://realestate.yahoo.com/promo/americas-worst-winter-weather-cities).

According to that story, here are the 5 “WORST WINTER WEATHER CITIES” in the United States:

1. Cleveland
Average Annual Temperature: 49.6°F
Average Precipitation: 38.7 inches
Average Snowfall: 58.9 inches

2. Boston
Average Annual Temperature: 51.6°F
Average Precipitation: 42.5 inches
Average Snowfall: 43.2 inches

3. New York City
Average Annual Temperature: 54.6°F
Average Precipitation: 49.7 inches
Average Snowfall: 28.9 inches

4. Milwaukee
Average Annual Temperature: 47.5°F
Average Precipitation: 34.8 inches
Average Snowfall: 47.5 inches

5. Chicago
Average Annual Temperature: 49.1°F
Average Precipitation: 36.2 inches
Average Snowfall: 38.2 inches

Now, what’s significant about that list?   

1 – The most coveted free agent in this coming NBA off-season, LeBron James, plays in the city that has THE worst weather in the USA.  Does that matter?  Who knows.

2 – Three of the Top 5 worst winter weather cities are major markets (Boston, Chicago, and New York).  This point only strengthens my stance that weather plays a small role in a player’s decision to go to a team or to simply like or dislike a city.  The biggest factor is winning.

That’s all the Raptors have to do.  Win. 

Like I’ve said 1000 times before … weather didn’t affect Larry Bird, et al in Boston during their glory years … nor did it matter to Michael Jordan and the Bulls or the “Bad Boys” in Detroit.  Just win baby. 

Oh, and how does Toronto stack up against those 5 cities above?  Well, according to this story – http://www.bbc.co.uk/weather/world/city_guides/results.shtml?tt=TT000900 - the average temperature in T.O. is 53.45 degrees Fahrenheit (based on the average MAX for each month) and based on the numbers I’m reading, the annual precipitation is just under 29 inches and the snowfall is 52.4 inches.

Toronto gets less rain than any one of those 5 … 
Toronto is the second-warmest city on the list – next to NYC …
Toronto is neck-and-neck with NYC & CHI for lower annual combined precipitation (snow/rain) …
But Toronto is second-worst (to Cleveland) in average snowfall

Just some interesting facts for some of those uninformed souls south of the border that think we live in igloos and take our polar bears for walks every morning.

—–

BACK TO BASKETBALL

Tired of the weather talk?

Okay … here are a few tidbits of hoops to get ya ready for tomorrow night’s Toronto-Philly tilt:

* Reggie Evans WILL play for the Raptors.  The thought is that Evans will see less than 10 minutes of action against his former team and Jay Triano said “for the first time this season, we have to figure who to put on the inactive list.”

If I were a betting man I’d say that Marcus Banks and Patrick O’Bryant will be in suits on the sidelines.

* Marco Belinelli (ankle) returned to practise on Tuesday (after missing Sunday’s game against Sacramento) and he should be good to go for tomorrow night.

* Sixers guard Allen Iverson will not play for Philly – due to personal reasons.  Details are sketchy (and in this case, it’s really none of our business), but word is that A.I. is in Atlanta dealing with some serious health issues for his 3-year-old daughter.

* DeMar DeRozan is bringing Jarrett Jack and Sonny Weems with him to Dallas for the All Star Weekend and he MAY use one or both of his teammates as a part of his showcase during the “Dunk-In” competition that he’s got going against LA Clippers’ guard Eric Gordon.  Further to that, DeRozan all-but guaranteed that he would beat Gordon in their 1-on-1 dunk-off, and advance to Saturday night’s main event – the Sprite Slam Dunk competition.

—–

USA FOR CB4?

Jerry Colangelo (USA Basketball Chairman) and Mike Krzyzewski (Head Coach of the 2010-12 USA Basketball Men’s National Team) will  host a media teleconference on Wednesday afternoon (1:00-1:30pm) to announce the players that have been selected for the 2010-12 USA Basketball Men’s National Team.

While nothing is official as of yet, it is expected that Raptors’ forward Chris Bosh will be one of the names announced. 

—–

BACK TO WEATHER

Sorry, I just couldn’t leave this alone.  I guess I’ve got some hidden itch to be a meteorologist or something!

Here are the Top 10 Worst Winter Weather Cities (according to that story on Yahoo … that came via www.Forbes.com):

10 – Baltimore
9 – Detroit
8 – Columbus
7 – Indianapolis
6 – Minneapolis
5 – Chicago
4 – Milwaukee
3 – New York City
2 – Boston
1 – Cleveland

Have a good one folks

E. Smith

13 Responses to “Weather, A.I., Bosh and More”
  1. 1.

    Hi I just joined the ‘fan club’ (initially, to enter into the raptors contest)and am really enjoying this site. This was the first blog I’ve read and find your writing entertaining. I agree with the idea that weather plays a small role in a player’s decision. Actually, I didn’t think players actually took that into consideration. PS. I look forward to reading more of your blogs!

    - Carolyn R,
  2. 2.

    Eric, are you for or against NBA playing for their countries in the summer. Apparently Ginobli is constantly injured and his body is just worn out because of the constant play for the national team. I remember reading an autobiography about an NBA player (could be Jordan or Sir Charles) and he said that NBA season is really hard and takes its toll on the body.
    Why don’t NBA teams restict players from playing in the summer so that their bodies can heal? If they (i.e.Colangelo) can “persuade” Hedo to wear the mask, why can’t they do that? Shouldn’t the players’ commitment be to the guys that are signing the checks?

    - Mr.Curious
  3. 3.

    Thanks Carolyn. Look forward to seeing you back!

    - Eric Smith
  4. 4.

    That does happen already Mr. Curious. Teams do strongly suggest. But I believe there’s a clause in the NBA that prevents teams from outright BANNING players to do so. They can “strongly suggest” though. And team do do that.

    - Eric Smith
  5. 5.

    Eric! you talked more about the weather than basketball! haha

    - Derek_N
  6. 6.

    Great blog Eric !

    - Damir
  7. 7.

    Eric, agreed that players want to win first. Winning with a largest possible paycheque in a good NBA city, all the better. But ALL OTHER THINGS BEING EQUAL, I believe they’d sooner play closer to home or in a better climate.

    Who wouldn’t?

    The reality is with individual team needs and salary caps, players look for the best compromise of all factors, with players sometimes rating these factors differently.

    Bottom line is your going to may a lot of do-re-me playing a game.

    Related to this “choise-of- where-you’re-paid” blog, it’s interesting to see the Colangelo to the Nets rumours.

    1/ Raps will no doubt exercise his option and negotiate his extension, effectivey locking him out of NJ consideration.

    2/ It’s NEW JERSEY folks…..not New York, not Chicago, not LA.

    And not Toronto; a pretty good (and winning) situation.

    Next comes the playing time issue, now that the Raptors are entirely healthy. We couldn’t just relax and let them keep winning could we???

    Go Raps.

    - Gary
  8. 8.

    No, Gary, as I said I still think WINNING trumps all. Like I mentioned … Jordan didn’t care about weather (i.e. – playing in LA or Miami) cause he was WINNING in CHI. Ditto for the Celtics with Bird and McHale, etc. Same goes for the Bad Boys in Detroit and even going back to Dr. J (or even Iverson) in Philly.

    Many players – in basketball at least – DON’T want to play close to home. In fact, Bosh has said as much. He has said – on the record – that he’d rather NOT play in Dallas, Houston, or San Antonio.

    - Eric Smith
  9. 9.

    I’m shocked that Buffalo doesn’t crack the top ten list for worst winter weather cities…

    - Steve B.
  10. 10.

    Eric, first thing I said was I “agreed that players want to win first” and after that, biggest paycheque, good NBA city etc come into play.

    So not sure what you’re disagreeing with.

    Then, note I said CLOSER to home or in a better climate. Not in their home town/state as Bosh has indicated he would sooner not.

    All things being equal as I said, (winning, pay, NBA city), who wouldn’t want to play in decent weather and be able to get to where your family is, maybe wife and kids, a few more days a year?

    All things are seldom equal :0)

    - Gary
  11. 11.

    You hit it in the last line Gary … my point was “all things are seldom equal”

    You rarely get a chance to play in a warm city that’s close to home that has a chance to be a championship contender year after year.

    Plus, I’m not saying guys should LOVE Toronto, Chicago, Boston, Detroit, Milwaukee, New Jersey, Philly, Cleveland, and so on. I’m simply saying folks (mostly Americans) shouldn’t bash Toronto or judge Canada on its weather only. Heck, 12 of the 30 teams in the league are in and around the “north-east” (I’m including Minny, Milwaukee, etc) and if we threw in cooler / potentially-snowy cities like Utah and Denver as well … we’d be talking about 14 of 30 cities (1 shy of half the league) that aren’t exactly “desirable” from a weather perspective.

    Thus, all things are seldom equal. It comes down to – as I said (and you did too) – winning more than anything.

    - Eric Smith
  12. 12.
  13. 13.

    Did you know that Portland and Minneapolis are more north than Toronto?

    People always say “North of the border” or “North of the 49th” when Toronto is actually below the 45th and East of Michigan and many other states.

    Toronto is such a cosmopolitan city that it should be able to draw free agents better than almost any other, save LA and Miami I would think. The stigma of the “north” I guess.

    Just thought I’d through that in …

    - Eric
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