There may not be a better word in the English vocabulary to describe what the Atlanta Hawks did to the Raptors last night.
The 146-115 beatdown, though, at least managed to accomplish one thing that could help the Raptors going forward: It stripped bare every excuse this team might want to use for its lacklustre defensive performance .
There was not one mention of fatigue or back-to-backs. It was all brutally honest self-appraisal of what went on.
Raptors head coach Jay Triano said his team was simply "outclassed."
"Defensive effort hasn't been there for a while," Chris Bosh said. "We have to be honest with ourselves. Tonight was just a total embarrassment. We couldn't stop anybody. We haven't stopped anybody all year.
"The past few games we have been outworked in every aspect. We don't get on the ground. We don't consistently get rebounds. We give up a lot of points in the paint. No coverage is good for us. I mean it's just not a good team."
He sounded especially happy to see the likes of Calderon and Chris, two players who learned under him when he was still learning the NBA coaching profession.
"Those guys mean something to me because those guys helped me get to where I was and I helped them," Mitchell said.
He also admitted that because he was still learning the ropes with Bosh and Calderon they got full throttle-Sam as opposed to the more patient and nurturing Mitchell that Andrea Bargnani got when he was a rookie.
Mention Al Horford to a Raptors fan and the first thought that comes to mind is likely the night he put T.J. Ford in the hospital with a vicious swipe at the point guard's head as Ford went for a layup. While it's unlikely DeMar DeRozan was aware of that history, he wound up sending Horford into the stanchion on a hard foul in the first quarter. Horford got up favouring his neck and sent a glare DeRozan's way.
Jack, given the rare chance to do something in his hometown, knows what a simple appearance could do.
"I was in that position before. Dreaming big, thinking big, just never was able to see it in person for myself," he said.
"And if I could have had somebody just to come and talk to me, just to be able to have a conversation with him, it would have done wonders for me."
And more than one veteran voice said Triano is failing to call out the players who are making the most egregious defensive mistakes.
"Every time something happens it's always, `It's okay, it's all right.' It's not all right," said Jarrett Jack, the reserve guard. "Problems go by without attacking them or challenging them or bringing them to the forefront and getting them solved. We can't keep keep putting them to the back of the bus and just saying, `That's okay.' It's not all right. Everybody can't walk on eggshells around here and say, `We're playing good basketball.' We're not."
Said Antoine Wright: "You've got to address (the defensive issues) and you've got to show people on tape. It's not personal. If you want to win, you're going to have to make some sacrifices."
“We’ve got to care about it,” Bosh said. “That’s what it comes down to. Have some pride. Without that pride teams just score at will, like they did tonight.
“If we did care we wouldn’t give up 145 points.”
Toronto Raptors: Oy! No, really, Oy! Brian Colangelo’s boys lost their 5th in a row tonight and it was UGLY. How ugly, they gave up 146 points! Ummmm, wasn’t the plan to keep Bosh here to place him in a winning environment???? The only reason the seseason isn’t a total disaster so far is that there are worse teams in the league right now (thank god for the NJ NETS). The Raptors are 7-13 after 20 games, 8 games back from the leader in their division and are in second place!! At this pace change will have to be considered by Colangelo and soon. Chris Bosh- who has been on fire so far this season put up 2 points tonight.
If the Bulls lose to the Raptors, I just might shut myself in an igloo and refuse to come out until a Chicago sports team has some success.
The Atlanta bench got some serious burn in this laugher, with rookie Jeff Teague (13 points, 4 assists) and Jamal Crawford (16 points) leading the charge. Woodson also got some quality minutes out of the frontcourt tandem of ZaZa Pachulia (11 points, 8 rebounds) and Joe Smith (15 points, 7 rebounds). I’m convinced that Smith is the equivalent of Pachulia/Mo Evans, i.e. he could start in the event of injury and prove to be servicable, even productive- not the kind of drop-off you would have endured starting anyone among the legions of sub-par big men that Woodson has had to choose from in recent years.
In summation, it appears that the Hawks might still be as pissed as the rest of us were about the Ben Wallace spectacle that took place in the Motor City last weekend. We’ll have to hope that, 146 points later, Atlanta can retain enough humility to deal with the New York Knicks on Friday, because a trap game happens somewhere in the world every ten minutes, according to statistics.
The Raptors suffered their fifth straight loss. The Hawks regained their momentum after losing three of four.
“We were simply outclassed,'' said Toronto coach Jay Triano. “They just destroyed us.''
Atlanta, held below 90 points in its last three losses, enjoyed an offensive revival against the Raptors, who are next to last in the NBA with their average of 109.1 points allowed.
“We didn't magically appear last on the charts defensively,'' Bosh said, adding the team's “defensive effort hasn't been there for a while. … I mean, tonight was just a total embarrassment.''
"I don't know what we've got to do, if we have to make some lineup changes, sit people down earlier," Jack said, his voice loud enough for everyone in the locker room and training room in the back to hear him. "We're not playing [defense] and we're not rebounding. We're shooting ourselves in the foot twice. I'm not putting any of this on one person, it's a collective effort. Defense is not going to be solved by one person being inserted into the lineup. It's about five guys on a string rotating and helping each other, talking and reacting to certain situations."
There were no such rotations, reactions or anything else against the Hawks, who didn't play their starters in the fourth quarter and still ran away with the game.
Currently the only 20/10 guy in the league, Bosh is a multi-talented power forward who prefers to shoot jumpers and use finesse over posting up and banging down low. Bosh is a mediocre low-post defender and shotblocker, but is an exceptional rebounder and jump shooter. Bosh isn’t rumored to be traded because of problems with the team, but because he doesn’t want to be on a losing team in Canada, and the Raptors might try to get some talent for him before he most likely leaves this offseason. While it has been said that the Miami Heat would be the best fit for him, there is also a large possibility that he will sign with the Chicago Bulls, New Jersey Nets, New York Knicks, or Cleveland Cavaliers
I’m having a hard time talking about the players in the Hawks-Raptors, Knicks-Magic, Mavs-Nets, and Suns-Cavs games. Really these were ALL done and over with early on in the third quarter. Chris Bosh played 15 minutes and scored 2 points with 5 rebounds. How often will you see that? Sonny Weems played 28 minutes and DeMar DeRozan scored a team-high 21 points in 30 minutes — the only game this season in which he played in more than 25 minutes. For the Hawks, 10 players scored nine or more points, with only Al Horford topping the 20-point mark. Sometimes blowouts aren’t as favorable as one would expect. On both ends.
Check out the Raptors vs. Hawks, all in just six minutes.
The Raptors head coach speaks with the media following his team's 146-115 loss to the Hawks on Wednesday.
Jarrett Jack talks to the media following the Raptors' loss to the Hawks on Wednesday night.
Chris Bosh talks to the media following the Raptors vs. Atlanta game on Wednesday night.
Antoine Wright talks to the media following the Raptors loss to Atlanta on Wednesday.
Jose Calderon speaks with the media following the Raptors' loss to the Hawks in Atlanta.
THE FAN presents all of the highlights (1) and Eric Smith's game recap (2) from Wednesday's 146-115 Hawks win, in which nine different Atlanta players scored in double figures in a drubbing of the Raptors.
This game was finished midway through the second period and the Raps decided to pack it in early on. At halftime, the Raps were already down 21 points, 75-54.
I mean there's not much more to it. The Raptors stunk it up.
This really has got to a point that if something doesn't happen soon the Raptors are going to lose far more than a season. It seems clear that Chris Bosh may be on is way out if things to not change. I honestly can't say that I would blame him. For those who see a brighter post Bosh future for the Raps I really have no clue to what you are thinking. Bargnani is inconsistent on offense and non-existent on defense. I also am unconvinced that he would be able to handle the pressure that would shift to him should Bosh be gone. Hedo is to this point a 53 million dollar mistake. Otis Smith his Ex-GM said that Portland would be thankful they did not end up signing him. Boy has Otis looked like a genius with that comment.
It's 8:30pm. The Raptors are playing and I'm contemplating. Contemplating whether I should turn off the game or keep watching the train wreck before my eyes. As the season roles on I'm certain there aren't many of us who thought it would start like this. At 7W-13L and a light schedule ahead this team is in disarray. This is the NBA and anytime a team drops 140 points on you and your no where near in it, there is something horribly wrong.
With the tough road schedule at the start, it was obvious it would either make or break team chemistry. We've got 4 losses in a row, players calling each other out and a coach with a failed defensive strategy. The "House" has been ram shackled by almost every NBA team we've faced. The living rooms been taken over. The kitchen's been raided and the toilet has been used and abused.
This is gonna sound insane, but that might be the first, closest dose of leadership we've seen from CB4 this year so far. Yeah, he's got more than his share of blame to carry around, being the franchise player and all, but this is also the first time he's actually called out the team, and thus, his coach. Part of leadership is calling out your team when it's warranted, and not being afraid of how your teammates + coaching staff might feel. I'm not letting Bosh himself off the hook by any means, but its about time he speaks loudly about what is bound to be the worst defensive team in NBA history.
- Raptors Burned in Hotlanta