On his February 27th show, Stephen Colbert put the Raptors "On Notice" because their mascot had bested his beloved Steagle Colbeagle the Eagle (mascot for the OHL's Saginaw Spirit) in a website's "best mascot" competition. The Raptors, however, were already "On Notice" for being a Canadian team in America's national basketball league. As a result, Colbert added the Raptors to his "Dead To Me" list, casting the team into the outer darkness of his personal universe alongside New York intellectuals, owls and bowtie pasta. ( View the video here: http://www.comedycentral.com/motherload/?lnk=v&ml_video=82850 )
Since then, this is what has happened to the Raptors:
- Anthony Parker misses his first game of the season due to an ankle injury. He returns after missing five games, hurts the ankle again, and misses three more games.
- Jose Calderon misses three games of his own with an ankle injury.
- Rookie of the Year candidate Andrea Bargnani has to return to Italy to be at the bedside of his ill grandfather, then has an attack of apendicitis that requires surgery. His return date is unknown.
- Euroleague vet (but NBA rookie) Jorge Garbajosa suffers a gruesome Theismann-esque ankle fracture that ends his season and will keep him out of action for six months.
Not only have the Raptors been decimated by injuries since becoming "Dead To Colbert", the players going down are those who are foreign-born, or at least saw significant time playing b-ball outside the good ole US of A.
Let this be a lesson to all sports franchises. Whatever you do, don't get on Stephen Colbert's bad side.
Posted by Erik Siegrist at 3/28/2007 11:45:00 AM