Andrea Bargnani: One of the 5 Softest Players in the NBA

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Andrea Bargnani: One of the 5 Softest Players in the NBA
Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports

Andrea Bargnani is included in lists of the softest players in the NBA on a regular basis. Not exactly the way a former first overall pick in the NBA wants his legacy to be defined. However, Andrea Bargnani may perhaps be the definition of a term that is open to some interpretation.

You can define “soft” in the NBA in a number of ways. The most obvious is a player who does not engage in physical play. If this guy were in the middle of an NBA skirmish, you would fall out of your chair in shock. He is the last guy you would want having your back in a dark alley.

The term “soft” can also be in reference to your toughness, to your ability to fight through pain and injury. Sometimes, this can be simply unfair to knock a player for, but there is no doubt it happens. The Raptors have a player in Amir Johnson whom I have personally witnessed fight through injury and play through pain for years. That gains you a lot of respect from the people in your locker room, and from fans as well.

You may question if the guys on this list know the difference between hurt and injured. We all do this without our medical degrees, of course. In all the definitions of the term "soft," this might be the cruelest and hardest to really prove. All people are different and some bodies recover faster than others.

We never get to see how hard guys work when they are rehabbing an injury. Only people on the inside of an organization truly know how hard a player works to return to the lineup. 

There is also being “soft” mentally, which can be a tricky one to define in real terms. We base these opinions a lot of times on body language and the effort level of players when things are going badly. We often hear of the mental grind of a NBA season, and some guys embrace that and others shy away from it.

So, to make this starting five of softness, you need some combination of all these less than desirable attributes. In terms of Andrea Bargnani, you can make the case he fits in all three of these categories.

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