I’m just throwing this against the wall to see if it sticks, but I don’t think the Mavs would have been able to win a game that saw them go tit-for-tat for most of it against a better rested team. Carlisle got this squad to push super hard, grab an early lead, and never give it up, no matter what kind of pressure was thrown at them. The Raptors slower pace suited them just fine.

After playing 3 games in 5 nights, the Mavs shouldn’t have had the legs to wipe-out a well rested, hustle oriented Raptors team, but they did. Like the Pacer game, this one was a result of not having the horses in the barn. Building towards something means taking a 13 point loss, and saying “you know what, that wasn’t a bad game because…,” and it wasn’t. I mean, there were infuriating moments throughout the game, but when you just don’t have the talent…

Some of you might remember when Michael Curry played for this team. The guy sucked, he really did; one of my least favourite Raptors of all-time. He contributed next to nothing offensively, was even worse on defense, and for some reason, he started. Rasual Butler is the 2012 Michael Curry. Casey alluded to him being a leader on the team, so it looks like he’s here to stay. His one contribution was a pull-up jumper in transition early in the 1st quarter with his foot on the line. That’s all I’m going to expect form the guy for the rest of the year, in fact, I’m not even going to mention his name unless he does something special; dude is dead to me.

You know what I like about DeRozan? After two lacklustre 1st quarter performances, he got Casey’s message and came ready to play. The kid works hard, and it’s showing; that jumper didn’t just fix itself. After pulling up in transition for a sweet jumper early in the 1st, he followed it up with a Michael Jordan’esque fade from the corner. This is where the game fell apart for the Raptors; while the Mavs were clanking brick after brick and grabbing their own offensive rebounds (Brendan Haywood had 5 in the first 6 minutes of the game…Brendan f*cking Haywood hurt the Raptors yet again), the Raptors were settling for jumpers and not grabbing rebounds of any sort on either end of the court.

This is crucial to remember, the Raptors defense didn’t let them down to start the game; they kept the Mavs to 41% from the field. It was rebounding that did them in. 17-6 with 5 offensive rebounds; the Mavs controlled the flow of the entire 1st quarter. It’s amazing that the Raptors were only down 6 heading into the 2nd, especially considering they closed out the quarter with both Bayless and Johnson forcing things on offense.

The 2nd quarter opened with Bargnani not touching the ball until the 8:19 mark. It’s going to take me some time to get over this, but when I’m yelling for someone to get Bargnani the ball, I’m clearly free falling down the rabbit hole. Bayless is not a point guard in any real sense of the word. He doesn’t orchestrate anything but the draw strings on his shorts. 3 times he missed an open player at the top of the key, and three times a bad shot was forced or James Johnson made an ugly. You know what two and a half minutes of Jerryd Bayless and James Johnson looks like:

10:45 Jerryd Bayless defensive rebound
10:32 Jerryd Bayless misses 19-foot two point shot
10:30 Ian Mahinmi defensive rebound
10:22 Rodrigue Beaubois misses 25-foot three point jumper
10:21 Ed Davis defensive rebound
10:03 Ian Mahinmi blocks James Johnson’s two point shot
10:00 James Johnson offensive rebound
9:59 James Johnson bad pass (Dirk Nowitzki steals)
9:48 Vince Carter makes 16-foot jumper
9:37 Jerryd Bayless offensive foul (Ian Mahinmi draws the foul)
9:37 Jerryd Bayless turnover
9:18 Andrea Bargnani blocks Rodrigue Beaubois’s 6-foot two point shot
9:17 Ed Davis defensive rebound
9:14 Jerryd Bayless out of bounds lost ball turnover
9:07 Jerryd Bayless personal foul (Rodrigue Beaubois draws the foul)


We learned that Anthony Carter is a poor man’s Derrick Martin, and really shouldn’t be trusted to play more than 8-12 seconds a game. With about 5 minutes left in the 2nd, I was considering shutting thing down for the night and winging this piece, until Calderon got into the game. It wasn’t so much that he was creating basketball goodness out of thin air, as he was making the right decisions with the rock. The ball made it’s way to Bargnani who was singled handedly keeping the Raptors close with some dead-eye shooting. Throw in a timely zone defense that threw the Mavericks off, and the Raptors went on a 12-0 run, holding the Mavericks scoreless for two and a half minutes. The half finished with Nowitzki and Marion quickly figuring out the zone, and getting 6 of those points back with some nice 1-2 action before the half.

In the 3rd, the Raptors were able to take a 7 point lead with a lineup of Calderon/Barbosa/DeRozan/Bargnani/Amir (really interesting lineup, Casey should explore this a bit more), but it’s hard to make any real moves when you go scoreless for 6:45 of a quarter. That was basically it, the Raptors couldn’t muster a point in just under 7 minutes of action over two stretches of the 3rd. Mavs go 1-3.

Additional Thoughts:

  • I really have to wonder what kind of player Bargnani would have been had he had good coaches from the moment he came into the league. That we can put on BryCo. Smitch pissed on the guy, Triano coddled him, but a month with Casey, and the guy is a real basketball player
  • While DeRozan’s jumper is actually becoming a weapon, I’m getting that Vince Carter flash back with the guy; he’s beginning to rely a little more on his shot, and less on athleticism off the bounce. 4 for 12 from the field, but only 3 shots inside of 9 feet. Going 3 for 4 from the free throw line isn’t going to cut it
  • Having both Bargnani and DeRozan on the bench at the same time forces the likes of Bayless, Butler and JJ to have a larger offensive role than they should. Casey needs to have one of the two on the court at all times
  • Casey calls timely timeouts; none more important than with 35 seconds left in the 2nd quarter. The Mavs just answered the Raptors 12-0 run with a quick 6 points of their own, and instead of riding out the quarter, and potentially giving the Mavs an opportunity of going into the half with momentum, the Raptors got organized, and executed a great high pick-n-roll between Calderon and Bargnani for a jumper from the elbow. It was subtle, but it took the wind out of them heading into the half
  • You can add Ian Mahinmi to the list of guys who have career games against the Raptors: 19pts (6-6FG) 5rebs 2blks 1stl in 29min.
  • Having a healthy Aaron Gray would have made all the difference in this game. You can’t tell me Brendan f*cking Haywood would have grabbed 5 offensive rebounds in the first 6 minutes of the game if he was getting some burn; no way
We got the Magic tomorrow and the Knicks on Monday. Happy new years, guys.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_MKD7XEPQZYPPVVSGZ2TPM6RNQI Killingjoke

    I saw an interview stating how Carter was gonna be a leader and going to get on giys cases in practice if they were slacking, thats good and all but if your one of the top scrubs on the team….

  • Pesterm1

    carter hasnt gotten any real play this season so many thats why his game was off. but ya he played turrible…

    • BCStefanskiCaseyGots2Go!!!

      As much as I respect AC as a NBA player he’s virtually done if asked to get out on the court and produce but he is a solid 3rd roster pg to have in the lockerroom.

      That being said I would rather have AC’s roster spot go to another young pg to try to develop along with JB and let Jose be the veteran leader (if BC is going to keep him around) as he’s 30 years old and has been in the TDot longer than anyone else currently on the Raptors roster.

      • terry

        this is the first time that i’ve read one of your comments which didn’t cause me to throw a chair at the monitor

  • cesco

    Smitch and Triano were failures as head coaches in the NBA . Smitch was fired not because he was not playing Andrea enough , he was fired because BC judged the team was underachieving and Andrea development was not fast enough . Triano was assistant coach material never head coach material .

    • j bean

      Actually Sam won coach of the year so I wouldn’t characterize him as a total failure. He was pretty good at getting more out of a lineup than their talent warranted.   

      • BCStefanskiCaseyGots2Go!!!

        I actually like Sam as Raptors coach at least we (fan base) were mad about not advancing in the playoffs not falling 2 spots in the lottery.

        Ever since Sam was prematurely fired at 8-9 while being given bullchit roster(s) to coach up that BC exclaimed 50 wins in the media with every preseason since the Raptors won the Division his 1st year in the TDot- I have turned a side eye towards BC (especially when he promoted Jay and Jay finished up at a 25-40 clip yet was given a 2 year contract w/ a team option for 3).

        Looking back you can see that Sam coached up the Raptors teams he was given and had CB4 palying at NBA MVP levels at times in order to get it done on the court.

        Sure Sam had his rough edges ie RAlston, VC..but he was a man’s man no bullchit- straight talk…and wouldn’t coddle AB like BC wanted ala Jay.

        • Glen Guntwald

          You can say ‘bullshit’ you know.

          When your mother isn’t on her back at my place, she’s behind yours watching out for her baby, lest he get scolded in the comments section for having a head with more air in it than a yoga ball.
          Straight talk, that’s my only real complaint though. For once I agree with you on something, SMitch didn’t take any ‘bullchit’ from anyone (save for BC I suppose).

          • mod

            now your going too far buddy with the MOTHER thing

            • Jamal

              nigger cant take it?

              • what the

                you would carry on like this defending BARGS your a real  BFOAYN guess what that spells because talking about BARGS a basketball player on tv makes one so angry he’s got to be a   ((( -a- b-y)))

                              o n f

          • Cdhall

            agree don’t get personal

  • KJ-B

    Casey’s style, is making Triano’s look like a offensive juggernaut! I’m not sure he’ll better Triano’s winning % from last year… All defence and no ‘O’–I remember Kevin O’Neil, too bad no one has been here long enough in management to learn from those mistakes–not sure what the rest of his playbook when it’s ‘in’ looks like… Short training camp excuses will wear thin by the end of January!

    Players make plays regardless of Xs and Os–never saw Phil Jackson clammering to run the triangle in T Dot or Minnesota… And as long as #7, Calderon and Barbosa are controlling the flow, then we gon lose harder and harder!  Kinda not wanting to see tomorrow night’s game, but like a fan I’ll somehow make the time–SMH… ((Just think that #7 game will ‘adjust’ the moment he gets his teeth knocked out on a drive))

    • what the

      i can’t wait to see how Rocky does on a back to back … Dirk was on a back to back and his team won

      • p00ka

        Another one of these just wait, just wait…. pathetic clowns. Can’t wait for your genius name calling retort

      • masonjar

        Why does this site allow bigoted comments towards Italians?

        • smoke the rock

          what i bet you like when he’s called ” king,dirk 2.0″ relax ADRIAN 

          • Wahlid

            dumb nigger.

    • p00ka

      Even without all the offense in, if you compare Casey’s offense to O’Neil’s, you haven’t a real clue about the game.

      • Carlos


      • KJ-B

        SAY WHAT??? I compared the defensive philosophies–read it again… A comparison by definition is between 2 ppl–when speaking about offence, I specifically remembered comparing Triano and stating, ”
        Casey’s style, is making Triano’s look like a offensive juggernaut!” 

        • p00ka

          “All defence and no ‘O’–I remember Kevin O’Neil, too bad no one has been
          here long enough in management to learn from those mistakes–not sure
          what the rest of his playbook when it’s ‘in’ looks like… Short
          training camp excuses will wear thin by the end of January!”

    • voy

      triano, offensive juggernaut?!  Dont make me laugh.  We have already run more plays in 3 games than triano ever did in 3 years.  If I ever see the triano specialty, jacking up a 3pter 35 ft out coming out of a timeout, it’ll be too soon.

      • KJ-B

        again, read it again–our lack of offensive fluidity by comparison…

    • Zump

      You can’t say that yet. Because of the lockout, there was an extremely compressed “preseason” and training camp. Players haven’t played in an NBA game for a long time, there is the rust, then there’s getting used to a new system, new coach, and new players with the Raps current squad. I think it all holds true, Dallas and Indiana, two great offensive teams, didn’t exactly torch us like they’ve been accustomed to doing, is it because they’re rusty or is it because our defence has improved? We’ll see, but I’m betting on the latter.

      • KJ-B

        Understandable–just the frustration of a fan, not sure why I care sometimes but I do–we’ve been bad for a while now…not sure how BryCo still has a job?!?

  • what the

    The Raptor have shown me three different styles of playing so far this season, @ Cavs the scoring was 7 plavers in double digits …Pacers the scoring was DEmar and Bargs, and now with the Mavs we one player going 37mins scoring 40 and the other 9 guys all played like &%$#, it makes me wonder if there is something going on, but anyways the style that i would like to see the Raptors stick to maybe just for this season only, is the style they played @ Cavs i know it was the Cavs but the style balance attack teams don’t know who to cover the Suns use to play that way having 7 players in double digits in scoring…this is what i think the Raptors did to the Cavs they build up a lead and the held it never going below 2 point this is where Casey comes in with his D-fencives know how,the next thing once the Raptors build a lead try not to let it go below 5 points or something like that if it’s not broken don’t fix it balance attack (team) none of this Micael Redd stuff 

       STYLE: build a lead and then try and hold that lead
                  never letting their lead go below 2 or 3 basket
                  if the lead goes below 2 or 3 basket then the Raptors must score or play
                  defence and they will learn how each pos. is important and to take care of
                  the ball…Calder likes to share the ball in a balance attact it’s good for the
                  double doubles sharing the ball

    • p00ka

      NBA basketball is not a video game. You can’t script how a game will go when different opponents have a say in the matter, to say nothing about how NO PLAYER can be always on their game for you to be able to script it.

      • mod

        thats what i was talking about like todays game, only we don’t go below 2 or 3 basket the next pos. every player know that we must score and that every pos. is important and you saw it with Barbosa the turn overs

        • mod

          p.s or the coach needs to call a time out to get the players refocus if the team goes below 2 or three basket

  • what the

    one of the things the coach has to fix about DD is in the half court when Calderon gives him the ball he just do this JAmario MOOON thing where he takes a dribble and goes nowhere then pass the ball back to Calderon the defence doesn’t even move their heads or feet or body just their eyes dang! he’s my boy but he’s got to go watch some BarBOsa tapes on how to make the defence shift

  • Akash_singh

    wow, where the hell are the mods? I find this comment section highly offensive.