Last game before the All-Star break. First time we’ll see Reggie Evans trot his intimidating hulk of a self across the ACC floor. You can bet he’ll dive at the first ball he sees even though it’ll be a rebound that’ll be coming to him anyways. He’s hungry for minutes and looking to prove that he deserves them. There’s no reason for Triano to tinker with the lineup given our recent success, so Evans has to work very hard to convince Triano that he’s more than the ugliest cheerleader the Raptors employ.
The most important thing about this game is that it’s a back-to-back for Philly who have won five in a row. They pounded the Wolves at home last night and if I now most NBA teams, they’re very content at splitting back-to-backs. I expect little resistance from Philadelphia tonight as they’ve already got their vacation flights booked; the oddsmakers agree and have the Raptors laying 7. Triano stressed four gettable games to the team in training camp – one before Christmas, one after Christmas, one before the All-Star game and one after. These are four games where teams lose focus and are ripe enough to be taken advantage of. So far we’re 2-0 here.
The coach talks about the difference in defense between the two teams:
They run a lot more, they create more with from their defense, we’re shooting gaps, looking for steals and turnovers but we don’t really run because of anything that’s created form the defense other than the straight stops.
Hedo Turkoglu talked about how he’s comfortable wearing the mask and explained the Raptors dominance at home, he said:
I fil muz btr and hpfly this wl last game rest nxt wk doctor again scan feel hopflly healing 100 perzant. sumtm frst af al faze uncumftble it keep fixing it drivng ball adjusin it.
I’m just joking. He says he’s just fine but hopefully he doesn’t have to wear it because his teammates call him Zorro (seriously, it’s true). He does seem a little disappointed that he didn’t get picked for the All-Star game last year.
I was checking the Philly Enquirer website and found a recent chat of their beat reporter, Kate Fagan, who commented on all things Sixers. Here’s what she had to say about the acquisition of Iverson:
Q: Are the 76er’s better or worse off with Iverson? He cant play with Lou –
A: I think Iverson has been a model citizen in his time, and he’s played decently, but I’ve said all along that I don’t understand the move and I think it set the Sixers back.
Now that folks is a beat reporter speaking her mind and not being blindly loyal to the organization. Well played. On that note, Iverson, who missed last night’s game will also miss tonight’s because of “personal reasons”.
Frank Zicarelli’s tackled the slow news day in a creative manner, by saying that rumours are “swirling” that Colangelo could join the Nets. I read the whole article and it doesn’t have a damned quote and is entirely speculative. Come to think of it I could’ve written the same thing and gotten a lot of cheap hits. My take on it is this: Colangelo will leave if Bosh walks for nothing because he’ll be fired if that happens so it won’t be called “leaving” at all, it’ll be getting canned.
There’s a pretty nice article in the Star about number crunching and how Colangelo goes about employing people with giant calculators.
The Raptors will practice again on Monday and Tuesday before hitting the floor on Wednesday against Memphis at home.
That’s all I got. Hopefully phdsteve satisfies your craving for Raptors talk later in the day.