Raja Bell Is Back
July 22, 2010 -
I’m still bitter about losing Wesley Matthews to the Blazers, but learning that Raja Bell has decided to sign with the Jazz is a nice consolation prize. What makes it all the more sweet is the fact that in opting for Utah, Bell rejected a personal sales pitch from Kobe Bryant to join the Lakers.
If you want to know why Kobe wanted Raja on his team, just take a look at the picture. In reference to that incident, I would normally lose respect for a player who laid a clothesline on an opponent in the middle of a game. But since Bell did this to Kobe Bryant, I’m completely fine with it. In fact, I respect him more for it. (For those not familiar with the situation, Bell was heavily provoked by cheap elbows from Kobe throughout the entire series. And yes, Bell was ejected and suspended for the maneuver.)
I was sorely disappointed when Bell left the Jazz to sign with the Suns 5 years ago, and I’m thrilled to have him back now. With Matthews gone, the Jazz desperately need his defense. With Korver gone, the Jazz need his 3-point shooting. But most of all, the Jazz need his toughness. Welcome back, Raja.
Gotta hand it to Kevin O'Connor. He's taken what was shaping up to be a disastrous offseason and turned it into something pretty exciting.