Tuesday February 16 2010 – 10:57pm Eastern – Toronto, ON

This blog was sort of inspired by my man Andre – who left a comment on my Feb. 14 blog/chat in regards to the statement that was made by Charles Barkley during the NBA All Star Weekend.

Barkley, referring to Raptors big man Chris Bosh, said  “…Here goes the most underrated player in the NBA …”

Do I agree with Barkley’s comment?

Sort of.

Perhaps “under-appreciated” would be a more fitting term.

Amongst coaches and general managers – and scouts and advisers and what not – Bosh is not underrated.  Folks know how good this guy is.

And I don’t know if he’s “unappreciated” … because that would mean that nobody appreciates him … and we all know that that’s not the case.  If nothing else, folks in Toronto APPRECIATE Bosh.  The fans do … the Raptors organization does.  Heck, many in the T.O. media do too.

That’s why I prefer to say that he’s “under-appreciated” … i.e. … not appreciated enough.

That appreciation comes through coverage more than anything else.

Thus, to bring it back to Barkley … he’s somewhat right … in a round about way.   His employers – TNT – don’t appreciate Bosh enough.  They underrate his talent and lure.  Ditto for the Raptors as a whole.  And ditto for other major U.S. networks like ESPN and big-time publications and websites like ESPN.com/ESPN The Magazine, SI.com/Sports Illustrated, etc.

Let’s be honest … the last few seasons haven’t been glorious for Toronto — two first-round playoff exits and then last year’s post-season no-show.  So TNT and ESPN, et al can’t be skewered too harshly for turning a blind eye to the Raps.  However, ignoring Bosh is a different story.  He has been the constant.  To let him fly under the radar and not respect his game is akin to simply not doing your job.  CB4 is one of the top big men in the league – arguably a top 3 power forward – and he’s a 5-time All Star.  He has nearly 40 double-doubles this year and he was one of the best players on the USA’s gold-medal-winning team at the Beijing Olympics.  Plus, he has helped Toronto to the second best record in the LEAGUE since early December; vaulting into the Top 5 overall in the East.

If he’s still “underrated” after compiling those credentials, then folks south of the border simply aren’t doing their homework.  In today’s day and age of satellite/digital TV and every kind of access available ONLINE with the click of a mouse, there’s no reason to not know or value one of the best players in the NBA – whether he’s on TNT’s Thursday night sked (or EPSN’s Monday or Friday night games) or not.

It’s unfortunate that some will only take notice now that Bosh’s looming free agent status is getting the most attention in the headlines — along with a ton of bogus trade rumors and theories about what the Dallas native may do and where he may land in July — as opposed to his (and his team’s) play on the floor.

E. Smith

12 Responses to “Barkley On Bosh”
  1. 1.

    Most of the American Media and the folks that run TNT and ESPN are Anti-Canadian

    - Garth Joespeh
  2. 2.

    E;

    Well said. It’s time for the people who call the shots south of the border to give Bosh the appreciation he’s earned.

    - Lewickipedia
  3. 3.

    If not Bosh (and I agree) then who?

    - Veggamattic
  4. 4.

    indeed Smith,the ignorance of most americans as to the happenings outside the usa is shameful but even more so by media members not doing their due diligence.

    - jimt
  5. 5.

    Barkley saying something in a ROUND about way…..too funny from a round about athlete lol.

    If Bosh was truly underrated by US media, there wouldn’t be such a constant hum about his impending free agent status.

    The former is just more manu-news; manufactured to have something to write about.

    It’s actually comical how many of these non-news stories have hit in the last few weeks. We couldn’t just let the Raptors keep winning could we?

    Playing time outrage when Evans comes back! NOT

    Colangelo stolen by New Jersey or going to the Knicks. NOT

    Toronto is a hockey town. No it’s not. Who cares!?

    And now Bosh is the most underrated as stated by no less than an authority than Charles Barkley.

    Steven Smith is penning his next piece as we speak.

    Even this morning, Gantner is wondering whether the Raps are too rested over the Grizzlies who are favoured by coming in late at night and play on the back to back.

    The horror! Can nothing go right for the Raptors???
    (insert appropriate sarcasm here).

    - Gary
  6. 6.

    When I was getting into the NBA for the first time, I always watched NBA Inside Stuff with MY MAN! Ammad Rashard lol. I always liked how the NBA was able to market its players even on the teams we hardly saw on TV. But now I find the NBA and the TV execs in the states want to dictate who is hot, who is not, and who should be playing where. Every team should get fair coverage whether positive or negative. Why is it that US outlets don’t ask for Canadian journalists ie Eric, Paul, or Jack to come on their shows to give their opinions on the Raptors? And another thing why isn’t anyone talking about the 400 million lost in revenue by the NBA, the impending lockout of 2011? We can talk for 2 seasons about where Lebron can go, why isn’t Barkley chiming in with his colleauges about that?

    - Jason D
  7. 7.

    “…the last few years haven’t been too glorious for the raps…”

    Their entire 15 year existence hasn’t been “glorious”.

    Why WOULD there be an interest in the raps south of the border?

    I’m sure U.S. producers are fully aware of Bosh’s achievements, but they also know that to feature the raps in a prime-time slot, is to get lousy numbers, just like Canadian producers know that a decent curling match will outdraw basketball.
    It’s not the job of the media to promote any individual or team, unless it serves their purposes.

    We are all in agreement that the Jays should quit THEIR whining, go spend the money, and compete every year with the Yanks and the Sox. They have the potential to be, not only Toronto’s team but also Canada’s team…well worth the investment, imo.

    Ditto for the raps. They’re a good team. They’re only one player (the right player) away from being a contender. Make it so… and THEN watch the interest grow; and THEN watch the media sit up and take notice; and THEN watch this snowball thing happen. Now is the time for this franchise to do something HUGE (they have lots of Leaf money).

    In the meantime please quit this “woe-is-us-we-don’t-get-no-respect” crap. It’s counter-productive, unbecoming, and really, really annoying.

    - jim
  8. 8.

    Great remarks, Gary.

    Who cares what the Round Mound of Rebound has to say. Or any commentator, for that matter.

    With all due respect, Eric…I couldn’t care less about most of the junk that gets spewed by tv sports personalities. I could do without them – just call the game, and let me generate my own thoughts about the sport.

    Just call the game.

    Dan Shulman has done it, so simply yet so eloquently for twenty years. His intelligence, and objectivity, shine through. That’s all we should ever ask for. Talk about another Canadian legend, huh?

    You know, there are cities in the “less-traveled” parts of the US (ie. the Northwest) that have the same complaints about the East Coast cities and fans. Great hockey and basketball players that never get respect because they play in another time zone and thus don’t get equal exposure.

    There’s always someone whining about something. I’m so tired of it.

    Face fact, folks. Until Chris Bosh plays in a major US market, he will NEVER receive the attention he does in Canada.

    And, there’s nothing wrong with that. Just play ball, earn your tens of millions, and be a role model for your young fans. That’s it.

    - brento.
  9. 9.

    loved barkley’s other comment in regards to nate robinson drinking the gaterade pouch pre-slam dunk contest: “notice how gaterade doesn’t work for people who suck?”
    classic.
    look at the power forward position throughout history and you’ll notice that it just isn’t that glamorous a position. josh smith was overlooked for this year’s all-star selection for his undeserving, albeit talented, team mate al horford. kg has received most of his recognition because of his defensive prowess – an aspect of the game that bosh doesn’t entirely excel at. dirk lacks “power” in the traditional boarding and blocking sense..
    i see bosh fitting in to the same grey area where most of his power-forward counterparts find themselves and thus, there is nothing too unique about him being under-appreciated/rated/whatever. if you’re chalking it up to a u.s. media bias, look no further than the flashy play of one sg vince carter and the attention he received throughout his toronto tenure.

    - smitty
  10. 10.

    I watched the all star game and thought Bosh was getting a lot of airtime. Also everytime CB4 touched the ball commentator Doug Collins always mentioned CB4′s improved play this year. I think CB did well over the All star break just by the way he played. If CB4 keeps it up he will get noticed everywhere!

    - Neil
  11. 11.

    Jim – fair comment about the 15 years. Fair comment. However, you’re wrong about the ratings. It’s not ’cause they won’t get the ratings due to curling or hockey or whatever else. One of the big reasons has to do with the inability to register Canadian viewers on U.S. networks. And even further to that — and possibly more important — is the fact that ADVERTISERS wouldn’t get bang for their buck … cause their commercials wouldn’t be seen in Canada at all.

    Further to that … just to make the point … I didn’t say anything about the Raptors being on TV more. I simply said that certain members of the media (in the US) need to work on their homework a little more RE: with BOSH, not necessarily the RAPTORS.

    - Eric Smith
  12. 12.

    Go Raptors Go!

    - Raps Fan
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