Is Chris Bosh Willing To Be A Sidekick?

Mar. 20, 2010 - New York, NEW YORK, United States - epa02087175 Toronto Raptors

Chris Bosh wanted to be The Man BEFORE the season started. Since then the Raps missed the playoffs, with Bosh finding himself triple-teamed by the likes of the lowly Nets here. NOW he's open to a wee bit more help... (source: Yardbarker.com)

Regular Bucket reader Brian posted a comment about the “new” article on NBA.com that reveals that Chris Bosh doesn’t want to be the #2 option on some team — he feels he’s good enough to be The Man on a championship squad.  I wrote a long response and decided I should just turn it into a post, with a few more things added.

The first time I heard about Chris Bosh not wanting to play sidekick was in the middle of the season when TrueHoop had an article on it.  Thus, at that point I figured there’d be no way he’d come to NY w/LeBron (I think I may’ve even posted that somewhere on Buckets).  However, not to be quoting early Emilio Estevez classics, but That Was Then, This Is Now.

After the Raps failed to even make the post-season, everything I read seemed to indicate that Bosh was no longer quite so adamant about being The Man. So I was darn surprised to see a current article stating in even stronger terms that he still wouldn’t be a #2. But then I looked more closely at the article and saw:

“I don’t want to be mentioned as an addition to a team,” Bosh said PRIOR to the season .

The bold-facing is mine, but that’s kind of a big thing that’s only mentioned at that one point.  All the actual quotes are from before the season, but the implication is that these are new things that he’s just come out and said.  However, the only thing that directly references recent thoughts is:

Bosh hasn’t changed that stance, adding recently that he’s making his decision separate from LeBron James or anyone else.

The thing is, they offer no current quotes from now where he explicitly states that. Sportswriters looove to turn innocuous little statements into stories. So like if he was asked, “Are you gonna make your decision based on what LeBron does?” Of course he’d respond, “No, I’m going to make my decision based on what’s right for me and my family.” That ain’t the same as saying “I’m not interested in playing with him.” Likewise if they asked him if he still thinks he can be the #1 option on a championship team, of course he’d still say yes.

Anyway, the point is that in the last few months I haven’t read any quotes (or seen any videos) where he’s come out and reiterated those thoughts, so I’ve gotten the impression he’s now much more open to the possibility. I mean when he did that video segment it was pre-season last year and people thought the Raps could end up as high as #4 in the Eastern Conference.  In fact, a piece published on TrueHoop this weekend seems to better indicate Bosh’s current mind-set:

Late last week [Bosh] talked to SNY about the chance to play for the Knicks with LeBron. “Any time you have the opportunity to play with certain guys, you have to take that into consideration,” Bosh said. “When it all goes down, [LeBron is] gonna be one of the all-time greats. At the same time, I can’t just sit around and wait. I have to be proactive with my choices and what’s gonna make me happy. I have to make sure I take my time and make the right decision.”

Hmm, that kinda sounds like what I wrote above (which I made up off the top of my head earlier when responding to Brian’s comment).  Bosh has to say he can’t just sit around and wait, that he has to be proactive — it’s what any top players should say and should do.  But it doesn’t, by any means, imply as the NBA.com article states, that Bosh still only wants to be The Man.  The article is a hack job, regurgitating and quoting a video from last summer!

That said, I don’t believe the opposite is true either: that Bosh is now definitely looking to be a #2 to either Brony or Wade.  He could go either way.  In fact, if he does wanna be #1 AND have a shot at a ring, I think Chicago is actually a much more intriguing fit for him than LeBron (both LBJ and Derrick Rose like to slash, so they duplicate each other a bit). Plus Bosh has never played with a strong defensive center who can rebound, so he’s gotta be greatly intrigued about the help he’d get from Joakim Noah around the hoop.  With that supporting cast, Bosh would indeed have a shot to be a contendah with him as the main man.  The one significant weakness of Chicago ironically is the one strength of Toronto: three-point shooting.  If Bosh gets it down low, other teams will double, packing the paint, daring Rose, Noah, Luol Deng, and Kirk Hinrich to hit outside shots and none of ‘em can consistently do that from long-range.

In that case, maybe he should look at that team in the tiny town called Manhattan where they’ve got three solid riflemen named Gallo, TD & Billy Walker who all impressively shot over 38% from downtown…

Yes, I’m an unrepentant homer.

Where do you think Chris Bosh will end up?

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Topics: Chris Bosh, LeBron James, New York Knicks, Toronto Raptors

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  • Brian

    Well put. I think a lot of nba.com’s articles (and many others) try to make a lot out of nothing just to create buzz.
    I think it depends on what wins out… his desire for personal achievements, or to win — (or a balance of the two) He has legitimate competitive reasons for both, so I wouldn’t necessarily criticize him for either decision at this point in his career. Either way, it will be very interesting to see where he lands.

  • will

    Bynum, farmar –> Bosh = Pau, Kobe, Bosh, Artest, Fisher (or another young, up and coming PG)

    • http://bucketsoverbroadway.com Alex David, aka Short White Boy

      Laker owner Jerry Buss has really been looking to cut back on salary (as proof, see how wants to greatly decrease Phil Jackson’s salary from 12$ mill to maybe around $5 mill). So even though the Bosh-for-Bynum rumors have been rampant, I’d be very surprised if Buss’d pony up the extra $4-5 mill for Bosh over Bynum. Particularly since the Lakers just showed they can win the championship with Bynum at just 15%. If anything, I expect the Lakers to beef up the PG position.

  • Classic

    The Bulls are actually trying to find the perfect sidekick for Derrick Rose. Bosh had his chance in Toronto, but how did that end up? D.Rose beat them out the 8th seed. Just in Rose’s second year he already took them to the playoffs twice! How does that compare to what Bosh has done with the Raptors!?!? If Bosh wants to be the main guy then he should keep his butt in Toronto!!! You can’t compare the transcendent impact Derrick Rose has made on the nba and basketball in general in just his second year with what Bosh has done in his entire career. Basically, DRoses impact on basketball in just his 2nd year is much bigger than Bosh’s entire career.

  • Mark

    hes much better off staying in Toronto than coming to New York. What does New York have to offer that Toronto doesnt? Besides playing in NEW YORK? Toronto is the NY of Canada, and he has the whole country here behind him, not just a city. If Bryan Colangelo can recruit the right guys and the Raps are willing to go over the cap, I think he will stay. If Bosh doesnt stay in Toronto, I predict he goes to Miami to play with Wade. Also, LeBron stays in Cleveland. Sorry Knicks fans…

  • Chase Thomas

    I wouldn’t read too much into this. Bosh is going to sign where Lebron or Wade signs, no doubt about it. I mean I think it’d be worse if he came out and said I want a max contract to be a sidekick.

    So don’t look into this too much, Bosh is just talking to talk.

  • http://bucketsoverbroadway.com Alex David, aka Short White Boy

    Classic,

    I think Rose is great, and Chicago could use a low-post presence, so Bosh’d fit nicely. If you wanna call him Rose’s sidekick rather than vice-versa, fine (although I can’t imagine the Bulls would use that in their pitch to him). However, just ‘cuz the Bulls have made the playoffs twice doesn’t make him transcendent. Nor is the opposite true that Bosh sucks ‘cuz his team didn’t get the 8th seed (although I agree that Bosh is way overrated). I mean LeBron James, Kobe Bryant, Dwayne Wade, and Michael Jordan have all missed the playoffs.

    Mark,
    In terms of what New York can offer Bosh that the Raps can’t: a second top player. It doesn’t matter if Toronto’s willing to go over the cap, they can’t sign any new players to more than the veteran’s minimum (or they can use their mid-level exception to pay up to like $6 mill, but no top dog’s gonna come for that little). Toronto’s in the same position as Cleveland: they can only improve the talent through trades, not recruitment. And there’s no guarantee a team’ll luck out and have a Pau Gasol fall in your lap. Basically, if Bosh wants to play on a better team, he has to sign elsewhere because Toronto’s spent all this $ on Calderon, Bargnani & Turkoglu, leaving them no wiggle room. I’m not saying New York’s the best or only option, but the Raps have boxed themselves into a corner, so Bosh is the one player I’m like 99% certain will leave his current team. And I think you’re right that if LeBron stays in Cleveland, Bosh would likely go to Miami (or possibly Chicago).

    Chase,
    My whole point is that Bosh ISN’T talking. The whole NBA.com article uses year-old quotes! That’s ridiculous.

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