Number Zero cut to the basket and scored behind the outstretched arms of Jamario Moon. It was his 10th point in less than 30 minutes of playing time no I’m not talking about agent Zero Gilbert Arenas I am talking about the Raptors shooting guard Marco Belinelli. He requested the Raptors that he wears the number zero because it’s his new lease in life and he wants to start everything from scratch. Being drafted and played a minimal role as a Golden State Warrior Marco wants to prove to everybody that he is hungry and he wants to make the most out of the opportunity being given to him by the Raptors.
His 10 points, 1 assist and 1 rebound wasn’t that impressive compared to Andrea Bargnani’s 28 points, 5 rebounds and 1 assist but it was overall a solid performance for Belinelli who have to come off the bench for rookie Demar Derozan. It was just the Raptors first game and Belinelli’s long shot for redemption but what’s significant about this win is a W against one of the best teams in the NBA the Cleveland Cavaliers. The Raptors cohesiveness was great and when they lose their 21 point lead margin they went into their strengths and find a way to score a victory by not relying on one superstar but relying on their team’s offense and defensive plays. Marco has some moments when he went toe to toe with Lebron James forcing him to shoot fade away shots and at times disrupt some open shots which are not reflected in the Stats sheets. In other words he played an overall game which help the team hold on to a 101-91 victory.
One game doesn’t entails that Belinelli has redeemed himself. T he Raptors has 81 games left on the season and if lucky they could end up playing in the Playoffs. Marco doesn’t have to worry about proving himself because he is a good basketball player scoring huge points on summer camps and became a good role player when he was in Golden State. He may not be an All-star this year but I think he is a great candidate for a 6-man of the year award. But still it’s still too early to tell. Will we see Belinelli’s breakout year? We can never tell. At least everything started on the right direction.