It seems that ankle injuries are the "soup de jour" for the Raptors these days.
Jose Calderon missed action with a sprained ankle. Anthony Parker went through the same thing. Chris Bosh had to leave Friday's game after hurting his ankle. It was probably still bothering him during last night's loss to Boston. It's probably why he wasn't as energetic as he usually is.
Then, there's what happened last night, to Jorge Garbajosa.
For those who don't know, "Garbo" was trying to prevent a Boston player from scoring. He jumped up to see if he could stop the ball and landed awkwardly on his left foot, wrecking his ankle. If you have a weak stomach, I strongly advise you not to watch the clip. It was not pretty.
Garbo was screaming in pain. Leo Rautins (and Eric Smith on radio) kept saying, "a foot should not be able to point that way." You knew it was bad when the training staff ran on the court and immediately threw a towel over the damaged foot. That's how bad it was. Garbo's season is over. He'll be facing months of recovery and rehab.
Here's what's bothering me: Even though Garbo is a rookie, he's actually 29-years-old. He's been playing professional basketball for a number of years in Europe. This happens to be his first season in the NBA. If he can't fully recover, then the Raptors might have to release him. No team in the NBA would take a guy in his thirties with a weak ankle. I am praying that won't happen. However, Garbo is a very strong person. He's tough on and off the court. There's no doubt that he will recover and be ready for the 2007-08 season.
Meanwhile, now more then ever, the Raptors have to increase their performance levels. No Bargnani, no Garbajosa; every player has to make up for their absence. The Raptors have boasted that the one word that describes them is resilient. It's time to show just how resilient they are.
*It's here, finally! Episode 33 of the Audio Circus*