Bargnani looked like he had something to prove

RYAN WOLSTAT, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 10:09 PM ET

Once again, at least early on, it seemed pretty personal for Andrea Bargnani.

Two games after picking up his game against the man picked right after him in the 2006 draft, LaMarcus Aldridge, Bargnani went right at Chris Bosh.

Toronto’s new go-to guy, made its old primary option work defensively, especially in the first quarter.

Bargnani got around Bosh for a pretty one-handed lay-in and launched a bunch of jumpers in his face to various degrees of success.

Going back to attack-mode, Bargnani later went right around Bosh and threw down a spinning one-handed dunk in the second quarter.

Late in the fourth, Bargnani up-faked Bosh and after Bosh flew past him, calmly hit a three to cut Miami’s lead to four.

While Bosh guarded Bargnani, Ed Davis or Amir Johnson drew the job of containing Bosh at the other end.

Bargnani scored 38 points, Bosh added 25.

BIG 3 SOLIDARITY

The visitor’s locker room at the Air Canada Centre has two “king” seats. These are the biggest stalls, with the most space.

Stars like Kevin Durant and Blake Griffin or the oldest players on a team usually get them.

LeBron James always took one as a Cav, but in a show of solidarity, since Miami has a so-called Big 3, none of James, Dwyane Wade or Chris Bosh took the seats in Toronto and they were left vacant.

THE RETURN SO FAR

In exchange for Bosh, Toronto’s career leader in nine major categories — including points, rebounds and blocks — so far, the team has acquired Miami’s 2011 first-round pick, its own first previously dealt to Miami and a trade exception.

Part of the trade exception was used in the transaction that brought promising young guard Jerryd Bayless to Toronto, while about $12.5 million US remains in play until it expires in July.

BRONX CHEER

Who says Toronto basketball fans aren’t savvy?

When Andrea Bargnani finally hauled down his first rebound of the night late in the third quarter, many supporters responded with a bronx cheer.

STAR-DRIVEN LEAGUE?

It’s the most maddening part of NBA basketball. And though the league vociferously denies it, star players and star-laden teams have long gotten the benefit of the doubt from the referees.

The officials repeatedly gave Miami gift calls, most egregiously late in the fourth when Johnson clearly cleanly blocked James but was called for a foul that basically eliminated Toronto’s hopes of a comeback. The refs later ignored an obvious foul as Johnson attempted a lay-in in the dying seconds.

The free throw disparity for the game was 37 attempts for Miami, just 20 for Toronto.

STILL CAN’T BUY A BUCKET

Starting point guard Jose Calderon continues to struggle from the field.

Calderon, one of the few NBA players ever to have a 50-40/90 season (field goal, three-point, free-throw percentage) has forgotten how to shoot, going 2-for-9 on Wednesday.

In six February contests heading in, Calderon has hit just 27.3% of his attempts and just 8.3% from three.

The slump follows Calderon’s two best shooting months of the season, 45.6% (39.5% from three) in January and 55.2% (45.2% from deep) in December.

ryan.wolstat@sunmedia.ca


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