The Toronto Raptors Blog with an Arsenal touch

Detroit was too much but we can handle Sacramento

Posted by Arsenalist on January 16, 2008

Sacramento Kings 91, Toronto Raptors 116

I don’t fancy the Raptors chances in an up and down, no defense, all offense affair where the first team to play some defense or go through a drought ends up losing the game. I’ve seen that movie before and have learned that there’s no thing as a “safe lead” when it comes to the Raps because they’re as liable to score 9 points in a quarter as they are to explode for 36. So when we were up by 20 on the Kings, the thought of a win was about as distant as a warm sun. Not until a few minutes had passed in the fourth quarter and the lead still remained in the high teens was I able to sight a win, and a pretty solid one at that.

Both teams were looking to score without much thought being given to defense and it was very apparent that somebody was one drought away from being down big. In a game of runs, the Kings got cold in the third quarter through turnovers and ill-advised shots and the Raptors capitalized on the other end, often in transition to the tune of a 36-22 quarter. It’s not like the Raptors played great defense, many of the Kings’ 20 turnovers were unforced and careless. The Raptors did however do a very good job of clogging up the passing lanes in anticipation of would-be passes, Anthony Parker and Carlos Delfino’s 7 steals combined is testament to that. The third quarter saw the Raptors completely demolish any 2-3 and 3-2 zone that the Kings were using by moving the ball around to get open looks and even attacking it, forcing it to collapse leading to easy hoops through quick interior passing.

Chris Bosh (11-12 FG, 31 pts) and Carlos Delfino (8-11 FG, 27 pts) led the charge with Bosh taking maybe one outside jumper all game because things came that easy for him. I’m starting to think Mikki Moore slowing down Bosh last year was a total fluke because he couldn’t contend with anything Bosh was trying to do. If CB4 had been eating an ice-cream with one hand he still could’ve put up 20/8 today. Even he was surprised with the space he got:

“I was just trying to be aggressive and drive to the basket. At the beginning of the game, I saw a lot of lanes. Guys weren’t really concentrating that much on me if I wasn’t in the post. Anytime that happens I’m going to try to drive as soon as I catch the ball.”

Delfino shot the ball well in Detroit and his stroke was still there tonight, none of his threes were of the jacked-up variety and usually came after a double on Bosh spawned a string of passes on the perimeter leading up to the ‘Fino. We did an excellent job of quickly moving the ball on the perimeter and forcing Sacramento to make their rotations which ended up getting the last option on the play an easy shot. It was beautiful at times. Granted if this was Detroit, they would’ve locked down Bosh and forced such a bad pass out of the double team that the theatrics that followed tonight would’ve been impossible, but then again it’s not in our place to beat Detroit, Sacramento we can handle.

I think the Kings would’ve had a better chance of beating us if Bibby and Artest hadn’t played because for the better part of the evening, the Kings players’ were trying to get theirs instead of going through any real offensive sets. Mike Bibby and Kevin Martin might be locking horns for FGAs in the future because Kevin Martin clearly feels that he deserves equal if not more touches than Bibby who would beg to disagree. The only reason we would’ve lost to the Kings tonight was if we went through a huge offensive funk or if we played zero defense, we did neither. Our outside shooting was solid with Kapono having his second straight good shooting game and as mentioned Bosh and the ‘Fino going off. What’s lost in the mix is Calderon’s 17 points, 14 assists and most of all his quick and intelligent passing on the perimeter. This RealGM thread pointed out by PsychicSpy debated whether our guard play is lacking. It’s very unfair to create such a thread after a game against Detroit, our guard-play has been generally acceptable all season, it’s hardly the reason we’re still a middle of the pack team in the East.

As is custom, here’s the Bargnani paragraph, I’m going to write it in green from now on: 3-13 FG, 7 points and 6 rebounds. Well, a pretty good game by Bargnani considering his standards. What might be getting lost in the stats is that most of the shots he took were of an acceptable quality level and he simply missed them. I only counted two missed defensive rebounding assignments and he did get back on defense when the Kings were on the break. Two of his field goals were good finishes around the rim and the other was a sweet baseline jumper initiated by a double on Bosh on the weak side. He did log 26 minutes which tells you he didn’t piss off Sam too much. Hopefully against Atlanta he can log 35 minutes, get us 12 points and 8 rebounds while shooting say 5-15? I can live with that. Yeah, it’s depressing but I can live with it.

Yesterday’s loss in Detroit left a bad taste in our mouth because of the way we lost, we played like shit and coached like shit but then again it was Detroit. They’re a cut above us and we should hope to be at that level in a year or two, for now let’s savour a rare blowout against a decent team. The 4 in 5 stretch is going according to plan so far, Friday at home against Atlanta might end up being a similar story as today. The Hawks will be looking for a revenge, the Raptors need to avoid a let-down after a good performance today, they should expect things to be a little tougher especially on offense as the Hawks have enough athleticism to bother the likes of Bosh, Parker and Calderon. Should be a good one.

I’d like to thank the readers especially PsychicSpy, SAMisCOY, Raps Fan, Crank, PapiJulio, Birdman, Red Rebounder and everybody else for keeping the discussion lively on this site. Keeps me motivated.


* The Score production was very poor, they missed at least 4 live plays when showing replays.

* Leo Rautins demolishing Chuck Swirsky’s bobblehead doll was tasteless. And also not funny. How many times did Leo Rautins point out that Reggie Theus was good-looking?

* Jason Kapono is starting to come out of his spell, that’s good, real good.

* We did a very good job of recognizing the zone and moving the ball around it to get good open looks.

* The see-saw affair of who’s the 2nd string point guard continues with Juan Dixon ousting Darrick Murray Martin. The race is simply too close and Mitchell can’t decide. It’s a good problem to have.

* Bibby and Artest returning turned out to be a good thing for us because the Kings were trying to find themselves through the better part of the game.

* Smitch proved that he’ll bench even his favorite player (Moon) if he fucks up. That was nice to watch.

* Sam Mitchell’s stare down of the officials was classic. It’s one of those things that sometimes makes me look past the glaring fact that he has no plays.

* We had 24 points of 20 Kings turnovers, shot 52.4% and outrebounded them 42-29, that’s the game right there. It goes in line with the theory that if we shoot the ball well and rebound, we have a great chance of winning. A no-brainer really.

* Hope to have Podcast #3 tomorrow in the PM. It’s a solo effort, do tune in.

Thanks for reading. Check the feed.

40 Responses to “Detroit was too much but we can handle Sacramento”

  1. David Moro said

    You know, you said yourself they were good shots, and you basically inferred he can hit them. If that’s true, it’s unlikely he’ll shoot “5-15” and get 12 points.

    More like 25–which is exactly what happens when the coaching staff and the other players reward him when he plays hard.

    One one steal, Bargs busted his hump to get down the floor and was right beside Calderon who elected to throw the pass to Moon–who totally flubbed the play and drew a charge (afterwhich point he was subbed out for by Mitchell). He should have obviously thrown the pass to the big man(always reward the big man) who could have thrown it down for some confidence building on an easier shot.

    That kind of play alone could have sparked better shooting. He’s looking much better and much more aggressive–and we all know those shots are going to fall sooner or later if they are good ones.

    The ONLY thing you should be complaining about is if he didn’t make an effort on the boards–and you got that.

    What, does he have to post 27 and 12 before it counts as a solid game?

  2. arsenalist said

    David, there’s a tinge of sarcasm in the Bargnani analysis. I’m rooting for him more than anybody but I’ve lowered my expectations a bit to avoid disappointment. He’s shown this year that even if he gets quality shots, it’s not a guarantee he’ll have a good game. Hopefully he knocks a few down against the Hawks, especially the open threes which he used to knock down consistently last year.

    I know the play you’re talking about, Calderon isn’t the greatest at running the break and that play was Exhibit A. Bargnani was the logical pass there but Calderon was unfairly expecting Moon to throw one down. I don’t how much that play would’ve affected a 3-13 shooting night but it would’ve at least given him some confidence.

    I thought his efforts on the boards was halfway decent, as I noted, I only counted two missed defensive assignments, both on Miller. I don’t think he had a solid game but he was much better than he has been of late.

  3. PsychicSpy said

    The Shazzam post was ** very similar ** to a paragraph posted by the Arsenalist after the January 4th game Pistons blowout. So in effect, the point made came full circle Arse-Shaz-PS-Arse: from being proposed by Arsenalist… to being dismissed as “unfair” by the Arsenalist. Comedy gold.

    Seriously, I don’t know all that much about the technical details of BB…but I do know that beating on Philly or a weakened Kings team in January is completely meaningless. The Raps progressed… and are now quite consistent at winning against suspect oppostion. The prototypical First/Second Round Exit Machine.

    But the only thing that ** really matters ** is how you match up against the Elite 5-6 teams in the NBA. Teams like Detroit and Phoenix just TOY with the Raps. It’s like a practice for them. Anytime the want to… they just put it in another gear and ice the game. And it’s NOT a matter of “gaining experience”. There is a big Talent Gap between the Raps at about #12-14 in the NBA… and the Top 5.

    And that’s the over-the-hill gangs. Our real competition is from several young, talented rebuilding teams that are ahead of us on the curve. Like Portland. That’s why THAT was a big win.

    Bryan will have to do a lot more than tap dance on the Bob McCown show to bridge the talent gap.

  4. SAMisCOY said

    Thanks for the shout out, and I think we enjoy our time here. We might not all agree, but at least we keep it clean!

    Good analysis, and I am glad that Bargs played a decent game. I am not looking at him to score (we all know he can do that), but the fact that he actually tried to get into position for rebounds, and played some defense is encouraging. Granted, the Kings don’t exactly have a scary front court, but any sign of improvement is good.

  5. Raps Fan said

    i actually thought had bargnani hit 2 or 3 more shots, we would of all said he had a pretty good game. like you said, he just missed shots.

    i really don’t like leo, he is a cock sucker. i really thought him bashing the swirsky bobble head was ridiculous. i kind of think he is jealous of swirsky, as he has been taking jabs at chuck for a few years now. to his credit, chuck doesn’t retaliate, except for occasionally showing old pictures of leo trying to ball in poom-poom shorts. but chuck was upset at the incident, really disrespectful. sorry for writing so much about this, but it really don’t like leo at all.

    i really want to see moon play better defense. he needs to stop penetration earlier, and not hope to block a shot. that sort of defense will just get him in trouble.

  6. Endo said

    Here’s the truest part of this post:

    Granted if this was Detroit, they would’ve locked down Bosh and forced such a bad pass out of the double team that the theatrics that followed tonight would’ve been impossible, but then again it’s not in our place to beat Detroit, Sacramento we can handle.

    We’re not good enough, big enough, strong enough to beat teams like Detroit and Boston. We’re good at beating weaker competition and are getting better at beating teams at our level but when it comes time to beat the elite, we’re not there and they easily take us down.

    PsychicSpy’s right about the talent gap but I think it also has to do with size inside. We’re not a very big team on the interior and those teams just dominate us inside OR prevent Bosh from dominating inside not only beause of talent but also because of size. Just look at the games Maxiell, Garnett, Wallace and those types of bigs have against us.

    Does anybody here have the interview BC had with Bobcat?

  7. cuzoogle said

    Nice catch on the broadcasting angle.

    I would not blame the Score though. It is the same crew no matter the network and yes they were annoying me with the missed action.

    I used to work on broadcasts several years ago and it is a sin to miss hoops.

    I actually got a laugh out of the leo/chuck thing.

    Delfino at the point when Calderon rests.

    great “rap” up here.

  8. cuzoogle said

    Oh I also caught the BC interview. He really can’t stand the PTS guys.

    Then again they don’t know hoops and I was shocked they did not turn it into a Leafs chat.

  9. Raps Fan said

    here is the link to the podcast:‘,’FAN590audioplayer’,’width=760,height=285,status=1,scrollbars=no,resize=no

  10. SAMisCOY said

    I remember a time when the Raps would “get up” for the elite teams (Mighty Mouse vs Da Bulls, or, VC vs the Knicks/Pacers), then look down right horrendous against “weaker teams” (remember when they used to play DOWN to the level of opposition?). So the fact we are beating on sub .500 teams, and at least equaling average teams, and losing to elite teams is a sign of growth.

  11. arsenalist said

    I think PsychicSpy is referring to this paragraph from the first Detroit game:

    I’ve already mentioned rebounding but the even bigger reason we couldn’t contain the Pistons was the defensive play of Jose Calderon who simply can’t guard anyone. Hamilton, Billups and even Stuckey went straight at him and did whatever they wanted. The defense was always forced to help which split us open every time usually leaving Prince, McDyess or Wallace wide open. Now on paper it says that Calderon had 15 points and 9 assists but that`s hardly the story of the game because he gave up about twice that by allowing Piston PGs to create and score at will. Not sure what the solution here is because providing him help obviously didn`t work and you can`t possibly let him handle Billups on his own, he was getting eaten alive. If TJ Ford had been playing perhaps he`d force Billups to work a little harder on the defensive end and thus slow down his offense. Just a thought. But don`t worry Chuck! That AST to TO ratio is still damn sweet, who cares if it comes at the expense of not running the break, giving up easy basket opportunities and slowing an already creaking offense down to a crawl.

    This is where I’m criticizing Calderon from being eaten alive by Billups forcing others to help. I’m still not denying that it’s a problem, it’s a damn obvious problem. But it’s a problem many teams have against the Detroit guards and I felt if TJ was in the game he’d maybe have success against Billups on the perimeter because of his quickness (although in the post is a different story).

    I took Shazzam’s post as meaning that guard play was a BIGGER problem than the lack of rebounding and interior presence because he highlighted one bad performance and made a generalization about the play of the guards. As for the bigs providing help, it’s a chicken and the egg situation but ultimately your big men need to be accountable for missed rebounds due to bad rotations, not the guards.

  12. PsychicSpy said

    The real issue is whether 15 starts is enough to anoint Jose as an “Elite” PG. He’s been destroyed by the Pistons and Phoenix 3 times in the last month.

    From BC’s smooth, double-talking jive sparing with Bobcat and Kelly yesterday, one still gets the impression that a healthy TJ is Still The One… and Jose is his Big Trade Piece.

    As someone professionally trained in hardcore logic (same profession as you)… Bryan is a master of rhetorical devices that allow him to dominate most discussions… but the media is catching up to him. The way he talks down to experienced Pros like Bobcat… will eventually leave him out on the same limb JP hung out to dry on.

    The entire interview can be summed up as: Andrea is on a “normal learning curve” and everything is ahead of schedule since were ahead of last year’s pace. Any disagreement with this view is hopelessly naive.

    I pretty sure that Bobcat and Kelly did not buy Bryan’s Party Line.

  13. Raps Fan said

    his logic somewhat stands to reason though. if the raptors can go on a second half tear that they went on last year, then this team is better. that would mean bargnani playing better too…one would think anyways.

    i don’t think bc and jp are on the same level. it’s an obvious comparison, but not a fair one.

  14. jjdynomite said

    … Maybe because BC has actually had much success running a franchise prior to the Raptors should give him a bit more benefit of the doubt than JP. JP was riding Beane’s dick before getting hired by Toronto.

    I too think it’s a sign of progress that the Raps are beating up on weaker teams. The woe-is-me perspective when losing to Detroit, one of the top 3-4 teams in the league, and 2nd in the East, is a bit much. The fact that they didn’t make it competitive is troublesome, but not surprising.

  15. PsychicSpy said

    I’m not saying Bryan is dishonest. He’s a decent, good man.

    But I am saying he is very, very good at using rhetorical devices to create a favorable perception in listeners. It’s called politics.

    For example, he lists 17 specific excuses why Bargs is struggling (tired from summer, new position, nagging injuries, etc)… and then says, “But it’s not OK to make excuses for Andrea”.

    Then 2-3 minutes later he DOES EXACTLY THE SAME THING a second time.

    Or everybody is fawning about how “open” Bryan is… but we don’t even know exactly what kind of surgery Garbo had, we don’t know what the f*ck is really wrong with TJ… and Bryan specifically said there is “no time table” for TJ coming back. Everything is VERY close to the vest.

    Or we need 3 ELITE pieces to contend. Or 2 SUPERSTAR pieces + a HOF coach. All the rest is filler that ANY competent GM can assemble.

    Before Bryan we have:

    Bosh + Lottery Pick + CV = 2.0 to 2.5 ELITE pieces
    (depending on how things work out)

    Today we have:

    Bosh + Bargs + Injured TJ + Jose = 1.5 to 2.5 ELITE pieces

    But with MUCH MORE uncertainty.

    That is why one could argue…
    That we are FARTHER AWAY from a Championship team…
    Then before Bryan got here.

    And Portland is WAAAAY ahead of us…
    And even Seattle with Durant/Green…
    Is closer to a Championship than we are.

  16. PapiJulio said

    Hey, David Moro “Always Reward the Big Man” Ture that! When a big guy runs the floor you better respect and pass to him. He’ll knock people and give you rebounds for it. It’s a win-win situation! It’s like a PG Boxing out a center, (if possible). You just have to appreciate the beauty and rarity of it.

    Leo Rautins demolishing Chuck’s Bobblehead…. I almost pissed my pants when I seen Chuck’s face start to whimper. Leo is hard on Chuck sometimes, but Chuck needs to stick up for himself. It’s like hangin’ with the boys. They always poke fun until you catch on and learn to ‘smoothly’ defend yourself. Don’t lash out in anger Chuck! Have a good comeback that’s not an insult like….”Leo you might be able to demolish me in the post, but I can use my ‘Super Voice Powers’ & call on all my Chuck-A-Manics to help create a Boo on you so loud you’ll be frozen in terror while I blow past you for an EASY layup!” Leo knows the power of the voice!

    Raps Fan…. I agree Leo is jealous of Chuck and $$$… but when men don’t stick up for themselves OR catch on, it won’t stop. Guys smell it a mile away! Leo just needs someone to put him in his place. Let get Charles Oakley back for an interview. He’ll do a good job of embarrassing Leo! Leo tries to push Chuck to help him man up. Then Leo gets caught up with the joke because Chuck has no idea he’s being ripped! Chuck probably figures it out when he watches tape and come back next game mad! Sometimes Chuck belittles Jack Armstrong to make himself feel better. Wrong move!

    Is everyone back on the Soap Box after this win? Kings really didn’t play well at all. Nothing to be excited about. Just another ‘W’.
    Sam is doing his best to find a rotation before the trade-dead line. Kinda hard when your not sure of TJ status, Bargnani defense, and why Grahams is shooting jump shots. Tear it down Joey!!!! Graham & Humphries are the grit and brute on this team.

    I don’t know what we’d look like without Moon’s defense.

    The trials and tribulations of Basketball injuries and busts… 2nd or maybe 3rd round of the playoffs would be nice this year! A healthy Ford & Garbo (Finger Crossed, Luck Underwear On) Another BC magic act. Some more playoffs experience and I think we’ll be ready to compete next year.

    Anyway, I’ll just continue to hide behind my Blog posting… like I could do a better job then any of these people. I probably blow it the same or worse!!!

    Why I almost wrote a book sorry….. I will shorten these….

  17. jjdynomite said

    “Even Seattle with Durant/Green. Is closer to a Championship than we are.”

    … And Bargnani will turn out to be less than Villaneuva (currently a bench player on a losing team).

    … And it’s Colangelo’s fault that Horford crushed TJ in the skull.

    You should stop now, PsychicSpy, and hurry over to your window to stop your credibility from flying out.

    Were you also one of those who predicted the Bulls would win the East this year?

  18. Birdman said

    PsychicSpy, totally agree with your assessment regarding the talent gap. The reason teams like PHX or DET can toy with the Raps is because they have 2-3 more scoring options that we do. If Bosh isn’t playing well, forget our chances of winning that game. But, if Amare is having an off-night, Nash, Marion or even Hill can step up. Ditto for Detroit – they have like 23 scoring options on that team.

    Raps are AT LEAST a big rebounder + all-star SG away from contending seriously. I’d love to see Corey Maggette in a Raps uniform, that guy is exactly what we need (attacking scorer who’s money at the line and an above-average rebounder for his position, granted he is injury prone) and either Dalembert or Verajao to help Bosh on the boards.

  19. PapiJulio said

    Corey Maggette in a Raps uniform. I’ve always thought that too. Good pick I think. BUT he’s locked in Los Angles. The fans loves him their. Cory still goes to playgrounds unannounced in Los Angles to play I hear. He’s a awesome player that would fit perfect…. but good luck getting him. A Clippers fan is like a Leaf Fan. Decicated to the end! Maybe more! I was in Cali talking to a Fan and was amazed. The trendy people in California that come for the dream cheers for the Lakers. The true locals cheer tooth and nail for the Clippers. Clipper fans have been waiting a long time for a team. Now that they finally got something that works they’ll doing anything to keep it.
    Birdman is on the right track….

  20. arsenalist said

    @jjdynomite/PsychicSpy: I don’t know about Seattle being closer to a championship than us, we’re both far fucking off but we’re still a little closer.

    @PapiJulio: Nobody should be back on the bandwagon after this game because nobody should’ve jumped off. I sometimes tend to classify games into three categories: “winnable”, “no chance, only a miracle can save us”, “got a chance if we play really well”. Last night’s game was winnable while in Detroit we had realistically speaking very little chance to win.

    As for Magette, I’m not sure if he’s the scorer that we need. I always felt that his game was a little selfish and he’s a little turnover prone. He’s a good rebounder for his position but he’s definitely not the answer for our rebounding woes. He has a strong offensive game and drives to the rim hard which is the best thing I can say about him.

    @Birdman: There are a lot of teams that could use an an all-star guard and a big rebounder but the question is how do you acquire them? You’ll have to give up quality to get quality and the most tradeable asset we have is Calderon who isn’t going anywhere. Aside from waiting for free agency, I don’t see what BC can do. I suppose he could ship Graham, Dixon, Parker out but what can you realistically expect to get in return. Trade our draft picks?

    @PsychicSpy: Bryan’s a talker, it’s part of what makes him so good. The success of last season blinded our eyes and we put him on a pedestal somewhat underservedly. If you analyze his moves, the best one will turn out to be acquiring Delfino. The jury’s out on the Bargnani pick and we’ve won the TJ Ford by the slimmest of margins, I think TJ staying healthy will determine the ultimate winner there.

    I think the jury’s still out on Colangelo but when he was hired I told myself that I’d give him three years to get us into the EC finals or within a shot of it :)

    Portland is the team of the future, no doubt about that.

    @Raps Fan: Thanks for the podcast link. Leo’s about as classless as you can get.

  21. Raps Fan said

    i don’t know if three years is enough to get to the east finals. especially when you consider that the pistons and boston will be there for about three more years, orlando is ahead of us right now, the wizards could be ahead of us if they stay healthy, the bulls are massively under achieving, the cavs are always going to be dangerous with lebron.

    i think second round is reasonable, and i think that is what you mean now, lol.

    colangelo is definitely a politician. on pts he talked about tj coming back, and to me it sounded like he was hopefull that tj would become starting pg again. with ukic coming over, i really think that means that calderon gets shipped out. like you said, he is the only tradeable asset with value this team has (tj doesn’t have the same value because he is injury prone).

    what that means in terms of what/who/how, i have no idea, just a feeling. although, my feelings are usually wrong. i would have bet the barn on mitchell not getting resigned in the off season.

  22. arsenalist said

    ^^ Boston definitely took a dump on the three year plan. Detroit you expected to be there and Miami was going to fade. That left Cleveland and New Jersey to contend with which I thought we could handle. Orlando’s resurgence is a little unexpected but I shouldn’t surprised given the cap space they had.

  23. PapiJulio said

    Oh come on Arsenalist… A 6’6″ player. A baller with heart & determination. Grab defensive rebounds. Drives and get the the line. Always got the workboots on. I not saying he’s the best pick, but would address many things we need now. I don’t think he’d want to leave Cali and come to Canada anyway. I just glad to see people thinking on a pratical level around here.

    A 6’6″ – 6’8″ SF/PF with Defence, good rebounding and ability to shoot or drive and get to the line. Someone who plays just outside the paint. Like Garbo did. I hope he recovers. He was a major glue piece I think people REALLY overlooked.

    We need a strong, fast-break center that rebounds 4 sure… Rasho just isn’t suited for this team, but I think he’s a soild big guy. Rasho is extremlly effective off the bench but with todays starters mostly being fast break style I don’t know if he fits. Half court… Rasho my man.

    Since we are all GM’s here…. what’s your suggestion Arsenalist?

  24. arsenalist said

    If you’ve been reading this space over the last couple months or so you know that I’m a big fan of Reggie Evans: cheap, strong, hustler, rebounder and won’t demand shots.

    Maggette’s not a bad choice but it satisfies neither our rebounding or scoring needs completely, and he’s going to be expensive. With Evans you at least take care of the rebounding aspect of things.

  25. RapsFan said

    Well that was really no contest, they played worse than the Knicks, granted that old players were coming back to the lineup and they needed time to get back on par with the rest of the team. Defense was really sloppy on part of the Kings, I mean Bosh with 10-11 FG’s shows how crappy their interior defense really was with numerous non-contested open dunks and lay ups, add that up with Delfino/Kapono/Calderon going off with an array of 3 bombs, and costly, lazy turnovers which went accounted for I believe 24 Raptor points? And finally, getting out rebounded by the RAPTORS (is that even possible)pretty much seals your loss – if you can’t out rebound the raptors – you know you’ll lose and deserve to. This was like taking candy from a baby.

    Bargnani continues to struggle, it’s hard to see him like that. You can see that he’s trying somewhat going inside scoring and grabbing some boards, but his perimeter defense is off a step and his scoring is just horrendous. Before he had his signature 3 bomb that people use to fear and gave him respect by getting on the man early on this season, which gave him quite a bit of difficulty; but now I see that people are giving him wide open looks yet he still struggles from the outside. Guess his sophomore jinx is still on with off-shootings…

    That’s pretty much it, Delfino and Kapono stepping up is great. Heard that the King’s announcers were poking fun at D-Mart and his ‘chucking’ abilities, always a good laugh.

    Bibby was impressive at the start considering he has been out for quite a while, Kevin Martin didn’t give us much of a show (was expecting him to go on a rampage) Ron Artest, blah, didn’t show up and was invisible on court. Salmons showed some of his moves in the beginning and then went cold.

    I think that’s pretty much it. Good analysis as always and keep up the good work Arsenalist, looks like this blog is starting to catch on quite well.

  26. Birdman said

    I didn’t mean for Maggette to address rebounding – that’s like asking Rasho to fill a need for a ball distributor. He would be the secondary scoring option we need so badly.

    You’re right in that an Evans-type player is more palatable at this point only because he is attainable with the assets we have to offer (Graham? Dixon?). However, don’t ask him out on any dates despite your man-crush, Arsenalist – just remember that he is very one-dimensional. That is, there’s a reason he plays 25 mins a night. To wit: he shoots 45% from the line and AVERAGES 0.0 blocks per game. How can someone 6’8″ tall amass ONE measely block over the course of the entire season so far? Juan Dixon has an edge on him in that defensive category.

  27. arsenalist said

    I’d have to be a madman to argue for his blocking ability but the fact that he only plays 25 minutes make his 8.2RPG (2.9 offensive) even more impressive. That’s three more shots Bargnani can miss! I’d do a Dixon/Graham for Reggie Evans trade in a heartbeat. His FT% is scary but it’ll be up to Sam to hide that in crunch time.

    I’m thinking realistically here, ideally I’d like to have Dwight Howard but it’s not happening. Same for Maggette. Johan Petro anyone? How about Steven Hunter? Is Danny Fortson alive?

  28. PapiJulio said

    I just found this blog about 5 games about. Have no idea how long it’s been around.

    People posting here seem to follow the underlining stories here that effect the game. Things you can’t read in the media.

    I feel like if I mention the word basketball in Canada people say… what’s that?? You mean hockey?? Is Micheal Jordan still playing?? Lot of good points by people here… No major bashing. You can sense some rooted Raptors fans here with good ideas.

  29. Birdman said

    Arsenalist: True, but you have to admit its fun talking blockbuster trade!

    Looking at (I think you need an Insider account to see this) – Evans is ranked pretty highly in Rebound Rate (11th overall), although he’s woeful in other categories. Having said that, he’s still probably more useful to us than JoeyG is right now.

    I’ll throw out two more names that I think would be much better acquisitions. They are more expensive, but realistic:
    David Lee – underrated player that I’m sure BC could fenagle away from the Knicks so long as Isiah is running things
    Nick Collison – stuck behind Wilcox in Seattle, great rebounder

  30. RapsFan said

    If you want to consider Maggette, why not bring in RJ and Jamieson in the mix? Essentially they all have very similar games and fills up the legit need for a 3 with a boarderline all-star player than can boost us up for possibly serious contending.

    Maggette can drive to the rim, but RJ attempts the 2nd highest in FTA’s per game, compared to Maggette who is around the 13-14’s. RJ is obviously a much ‘smarter’ player as a whole and has a lot of upsides and plays solid defense with a good number of boards, I’m not sure when NJ decides to blow it up once Kidd becomes too old to play, but I would love to get Jefferson.

    Jamieson is having an outstanding season with Gilbert out the lineup b/c of injuries. 20/10 player that is playing for his contract year who can demand a bit, but a SOLID lockeroom presence who can bring leadership to the table. Although he isn’t much of a banger and he is… quite old at being 31/32 coming FA this year.

    All in all though, I don’t see BC getting any of these people – I’m positive that he’ll be looking into the draft for prospects. Somehow I think other than a 3, we need a person to fill up the 2 that can create his own shot as well once parker ends his contract with us.

  31. arsenalist said

    I thought of Nick Collison but it’s unlikely that Seattle will part with him. The only player anybody would want on the Knicks is David Lee and they’d be insane to part with him (but I wouldn’t leave it past them).

    As for Richard Jefferson, you know my feelings:

  32. RapsFan said

    Ha, nice! Read your comments and wow, thats how I feel but you expressed it better.

    What do you think about Jamison (heh I just found out that I spelt it wrong on my last post) though?

  33. arsenalist said

    Antawn Jamison? I’m not going to say no to 20 points and 8 rebounds a game. Problem is neither will the Wiz or any other team. They guy might end up having a better career than Vince Carter when it’s all said and done. Some might say he already has.

  34. SAMisCOY said

    Is there any way we can pry away Tiago Splitter from the Spurs?

    I agree on David Lee, I like his game energy, but I doubt even Isaiah will trade him away for Joey, Juan, and/or Rasho.

    I like Reggie Evans as well. Reminds me of Dale Davis. Would the Bulls be willing to ship Noah out now? How about Stromile Swift for Joey Graham?

    Any thoughts on Sam I Am joining the Celtics?

  35. cuzoogle said

    what are we all thinking about the Hawks tonight?

  36. cuzoogle said

    sorry wrong link

  37. PapiJulio said

    Nice 2nd Podcast. This the first blog I ever followed. Don’t like to spend time typing… but your blog is putting up good points that aren’t sugar coded. It says a lot about your quality for me to spend bloggin’ at work!!! I must be a crazy Raptors Fan!!

    Reggie Evens eh?…. Don’t follow his game but your idea isn’t bad… not bad at all…

    I wonder where you find the time to Host this??? A thankless job I bet. I’ll support anything Raptors…

  38. SAMisCOY said

    PapiJulio > yeah, a lot of sites tend to follow a player (re: VC), instead of a team. I remember the fall-out of VC leaving where we had “fans” who gave up on the team (good riddance). Nice to see us (Raps fans) evolve into caring more about the team as a whole (even noting management, scouting, coaching, etc.), than on singular players.

  39. PapiJulio said

    SamisCOY…I was at the “Lets Go Raptors, VC Sucks!!!” Playoff game. I think I released my anger towards VC. Felt good! Still lingers a bit, but not worth typing and more about Vinc….. I can’t remember his name anymore!?!

    I agree that the team is more important than the individual player. If you got a bunch of avgerage players and they are all ‘on the same page’ playing and helping each other, like a wingman at the bar, you can acheive things you usually have to work your ass off for!! Sometimes you can acheive greatness!!

    The whole is greater than the sum of the parts!!!

  40. […] necessary as per matchup. Bargnani played 14 minutes and scored two points, a fry cry from what me and David Moro were predicting after the Kings game. He didn’t screw up too badly, yeah he allowed an offensive rebound, […]

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