Bosh says he didn’t quit on the Raptors

NBA forward Chris Bosh arrives at the 2010 ESPY Awards in Los Angeles, California July 14, 2010.   REUTERS/Danny Moloshok (UNITED STATES - Tags: ENTERTAINMENT SPORT BASKETBALL)

Chris Bosh responded to claims made by embattled Raptors GM Bryan Colangelo that he ‘checked out’ at the end of the season.

Here’s exactly what Colangelo said, via the Toronto Sun:

“Despite limited swelling and any excessive damage on an MRI, he felt like he needed to sit for six more games … I’m not even questioning Chris’ injury. I’m telling you he was cleared to play subject to tolerance on his part, and the tolerance just apparently wasn’t there and he chose not to play,” Colangelo said.

“The fact that our season was spiralling downward and we were hoping he’d come back sooner and we were also dealing with a few other things at that point … we were really struggling there.”

“Whether he was mentally checked out or just wasn’t quite into it down the stretch, he wasn’t the same guy. I think everybody saw that, but no one wanted to acknowledge it.”

Colangelo is acting like a jilted lover and is trying to cover his own ass. He could have traded Bosh last summer or at the February deadline and gotten something in return, whether it be someone like Joakim Noah from the Bulls or maybe David Lee from the Knicks. His defenders say that no team would have traded for Bosh not knowing if he’d re-sign, but I think both Chicago and New York (or L.A., Oklahoma City or Houston, or any number of teams) would have rolled the dice to get the opportunity to re-sign him to a max deal, since that was reportedly what he was after. (Before you Raptor fans start slamming me for speculating, do you really think the Lakers would have turned down a Bosh-for-Bynum deal in the middle of last season? Really? Go and look at yourself in the mirror — do you really believe that?)

Granted, the Raptors were fighting for a playoff spot at the time, so had Colangelo made the trade, his fan base might have revolted. But that’s only because they didn’t see the writing on the wall.

Bosh (sort of) responded to Colangelo’s allegations in an interview with Sportsnet.ca:

“No, at any time, did I ever give up,” Bosh told Sportsnet. “You know, I take that very seriously. I work hard every time I step on the court — practice, games, shoot-around, whatever you want to say — I take this job seriously and I take my effort on the court seriously.

“I play this game as hard as I can every time I step on the court. On the back of my jersey, it says Bosh,” the 26-year-old forward continued. “The Boshs are hard workers. We have a lot of pride in what we do in our jobs and in life. There was no time, at any time, that I ever stepped on the court — in my NBA career, in my life — and stop playing hard or give up.”

Bosh is talking about his on-court effort while Colangelo accused him of packing it up early when he was injured. Those are two different things. I’d like to hear Bosh answer questions about his injury.

He also asked Toronto fans not to boo him when he comes back to play.

Yeah, right.

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