And the Raja Bell saga continues …or so it seems.
According to RealGM, the continually baffling ex-Jazzman-who-became-a-Jazzman-but-then-decided-he-doesn’t-want-to-be-a-Jazzman-anymore has yet to make a decision on Utah’s offer to buy out his contract. A few months back, we reported that Bell refused Utah’s buyout mainly because, well, our numerous online “sources” (IE, Hoopshype) stated just that (we’re merely a blog, give us a break). And the net don’t lie.
I’ve been fairly open in my view towards this particular matter. I’ve always like Raja, and still do. The man has attitude, grit and determination. I won’t rehash my overblown plea for everyone to leave him the hell alone, suffice to say the man came to Utah in the hopes of playing with D-Will and a possible championship contender (we did just pick up Big Al after all). Need I remind you that Bell turned down an offer from Satan himself – Kobe Bryant – and remained loyal to the Jazz in a time where loyalty and values dissolve faster than Carlos Boozer’s minutes on the court? That in itself makes me love Raja in much the same manner that I loved Greg Foster for his throat slashing bit back in 1998. And truthfully, I think we need guys like that – guys that aren’t afraid to show a little ‘tude on the court. Especially considering our soft pedigree in recent years.
And really, what’s the harm in keeping the Bell? When he and the Jazz were clicking, he acted like a proper mentor … Sometimes his shot fell, sometimes it didn’t. But who cares? So long as he’s willing to take a substandard role off the bench, I say let Raja stay (and eat some hay, by the bay, whattya say?). Coach Corbin needs to realize that not all of his players are going to like, nay, respect him – it’s part of the game. And really, Bell never disrespected Corbin. In fact it was the other way around, methinks.
Corbin refused to play Bell (and Miles) during that horrific playoff bout against the Spurs for personal reasons, which is kind of a silly thing to do in the NBA. And in all fairness, other members of the Jazz squad hinted at having similar communication issues with their coach. Except Bell displayed his emotions on camera, much like Greg Ostertag vs. Jerry Sloan: Round 4, except without the chair throwing (I still say that was staged for publicity reasons).
I digress. It is what it is, but that’s just, like, my opinion, man. (Damn it, Donny!)
We’ll see what happens with this whole scenario … and keep you kinda, sorta updated depending on my workload.
As a side note, I’m wondering how training camp is shaping up:
Raja: Hey coach, hey boys – yep, I’m baaaack. What do you need from me today?
Corbin: (Pretends to tie shoe) …
Raja: Ha! That’s funny. Seriously, what do you need from me? Because you got me for one more season whether you like it or not.
Corbin: (Pretends to talk to Gordon Hayward) …
Raja: The silent treatment. Really?
Corbin: (Pretends to draw up new plays that don’t involve Al Jefferson) …
Raja: This is bulls**t. I’m gonna go talk to Scott!