Phases of a Moon
Posted by Erik on December 13, 2008
For most of the season, Jamario Moon has been in sitting in former Raptors’ coach, Sam Mitchell’s bench with pretty much a “Do Not Disturb” sign hanging around his neck. This former starter at small forward had to give up much of his playing time to the more offensive oriented, 7-foot, Italian, Andrea Bargnani. The Raptors’ front court got a bit more crowded this year when they acquired forward/center, Jermaine O’Neal from the Indiana Pacers for point guard T.J. Ford. Someone had to give up some playing time in favor of O’Neal and Sam Mitchell chose to go with an offensive front court and picked Moon to come off the bench. Bargnani put together some impressive performances and pretty much eclipsed Jamario’s fantasy value into weeks of darkness.
Fast forward several games into the season and many losses later… Sam Mitchell is fired by the Raptors and they named Canadian, Jay Triano as the interim head coach of the Canadian NBA franchise.
Last December 10th, coach Triano got his first win as an NBA coach against the Indiana Pacers. Lo and behold who he decided to start at small forward on that day… Jamario Moon. Moon, in a season high 33 mins on the floor contributed a very respectable fantasy output of 17 points (58.3 % FG); grabbed 8 boards; passed the ball once; stole it twice; and swatted it away 3 times; while not committing any basketball related mistakes that statistically translated into turnovers.
Even though Andrea Bargnani has been getting more blocks prior to this game, it may behoove Coach Triano to once again give Moon another crack at a performance to keep his starting stint at small forward for the Raptors. He brings to the court more hustle and defensive intensity than his Italian, playing time rival.
Jamario has never been known for his scoring ability. After all, he only averaged a humble eight and a half points per game over the 78 games he played for the franchise last year. The thing is he brings athleticism and some intangibles; like hustle-defense and a role player’s mindset, every time he’s on the court.
Now for the fantasy aspect of these developments…
Jamario is an awesome stat filler as he can provide a little bit of everything. He can rebound the ball, steal it, swat it, and even shoot from beyond the arc. He just doesn’t really score with it in large amounts. The Raptors don’t really need him to do that, they’ve got another inhumanly athletic guy who’s pretty good at it; Chris Bosh. Moon’s a fantastic piece for a head to head team that’s decided it will punt the points cat, or as a multi-cat contributor for a roto team.
On the other hand, Andrea Bargnani is a small ball head to head team’s dream. Well at least when he’s playing and starting. Three point shots from your “big men” are always welcome for that strat.
It seems that whoever gets the lengthier time on the floor gets to be a sweet contributor for his particular fantasy team.
For now, Moon appears to be the current small forward “flavor of the month” for coach Triano. So keep an eye on Jamario to see if can keep some steady playing time and with that some respectable across-the-board fantasy production. If the Raptors can keep winning with Jamario starting at swing slot, then I see no reason for coach Triano to fix what ain’t broken in terms of what can possibly provide him with job security – “W’s” If Jamario can keep up his contributions and his tenacity then we may see Andrea having to claw for minutes and fantasy significance while in “the Moon’s shadow.”
Speaking of that Raptor game versus the Pacers, here’s a very sweet, inhumanly uber-athletic put back slam by Jamario Moon.