Pacers 90, Raptors 88 – Box

It’s going to be important not to get too deflated after this one.  A 50-50 call which the officials, after watching 30 different replays, made  a decision which decided the game.  I’d hate it to boil it down to one play, but it truly does come to that.  A hard-fought game on both sides which the Raptors were leading by 6-9 points for most of the fourth quarter and the majority of the game concludes with the home-team blowing the lead, somewhat predictably.  It came down to the wire in a possession game and a key possession went the other way.  Game over.

Stepping back, you have to point to the fourth quarter drought where the Raptors struggled without Lowry early in the quarter.  It was where Indiana gained the required momentum which eventually completed their comeback, certainly helped by the Raptors’ inability to execute in the half-court set when the steals weren’t coming as easy as they did earlier.  A lot can be learned from a loss and the importance of execution is definitely going to be hammered home by Casey after this one, because unless you’re absolutely blowing out a team in the first three quarters, execution in the fourth will decide the game.

Roy Hibbert and Paul George set the tone early for Indiana, Hibbert going inside against Valanciunas and George looking for his shot with Granger out of the lineup.  Both had success, but the matchup that caught the eye was Bargnani and West.  Bargnani’s defense can’t quite be faulted for West’s 12-19 night, West just happens to be a superior player who made it show.  Bargnani moved his feet, got his points here and there early, and was even drawing doubles at one point in the first quarter.  The standards for him are rather low for me, so if he shows up, moves his feet, gets a few scores and his share of the rebounds I’ll be hap…wiat…what…he only had 3 rebounds in 34 minutes? Meh, who cares.

Lowry’s activity in the backcourt was contagious enough for DeRozan to step up on defense, and despite Indiana shooting 51% in the first half, it’s actually the defense that kept us in it.  Specifically, the pressure in the backcourt which resulted in 10 steals in the half, 3 by Lowry.  The trapping was superb and forced turnovers, with big/guard combos being on the same page as to how, and when to trap.  See Calderon and Johnson as Exhibit A, and even Bargnani and Lowry combining to apply pressure.

Jose Calderon’s contribution off the bench was well noticed, as is usually the case when he’s a reserve.  It’s a shock to me that management wasted so much of his and our time making him a starter.  The guy is gold off the bench because he’s better than most backup PGs in the league and worse than most starters.  Makes perfect sense.  I liked the combo of playing Calderon and Lowry briefly with Calderon at the two, which is made to look especially good if Calderon is knocking his threes down, which he was.   With DeRozan struggling to find his mark both near and far from the rim, Casey tried Terrence Ross  for a bit but instead of rookie jitters, he had rookie earthquakes.  One of his airballs struck and killed a man.

The Raptors finished the half going 1-11, and tied despite shooting only 39%.  The positives had to be Valanciunas and Lowry, both newcomers were aggressive in their approach, no doubt spurred on by the great noise at the ACC.  Valanciunas’ defense on Hibbert improved as the game went on, he learned not to bite on his little shoulder-fakes, knew which way he was going to turn, and started to move his feet to counter Hibbert’s bulk rather than just trying to block his shot.  Hibbert (remember, drafted a Raptor) is a beast in the post when he wants to be, and at the very least Jonas showed that he’s up for the challenge.  Mistakes were made, like picking up a frustration foul after an airball, and maybe a team-high 15 shots is a bit much for a rookie, but hey, this is how you learn.

If there was a defensive theme in this game it was the Raptors’ consistent focus on anticipating opportunities to trap and play the passing lanes on the perimeter.  The flip side of that is recover and perhaps they were a little over-aggressive last night, leaving the back door open for a lot of Indiana’s points.  I would say the strategy worked because Indiana’s a talented team and we hung right there with them.  Sometimes we lose our perspective of this bunch, and expect them to win games which on paper nobody’s picking them to win.

Casey pointed out the need for the post-up defense to be better at halftime, and no doubt his eye was pointed to Valanciunas and Johnson, who was inserted at center ahead of Gray.  The latter was brought in at some point, but it felt like it was too late because by then Hibbert already had most of his points and rebounds.  Questionable strategy by Casey.  He tried to get DeRozan going by running the first play of the second half for him which worked.  Too bad getting DeRozan going isn’t as easy, and he struggled against George and Green’s length all game, and it showed with a 5-14 night where the customary poor finishing at the rim was front and center.

The Raptors pulled away and were up by nine in the third, all thanks to some inspired play by Lowry who led a 12-0 run where it looked like Indiana was on the ropes.  The defense picked up again as well, and the Raptors had some great baseline closeouts of Indiana penetration, which was complemented by much improved interior rotations.   Unfortunately for the Raptors, Lowry had to go to the bench and by the time he came back in the fourth, the combination of Lucas/Calderon had done well to extinguish all momentum. Neither got the offense going, and with no Lowry, DeRozan and Bargnani, the points became harder to come by.

On the backs of some turnovers, rather unforced, Indiana clawed their way back to three with under 9 minutes left.  Casey was preserving timeouts for some reason and waited till the TV timeout to get Lowry in. I thought at the moment that he had brought him in just soon enough, as the first thing he did was drive, get fouled, and knock down two FTs.  The offensive was slightly more improved but the legs were getting tired, and Lowry front-rimmed a couple jumpers which didn’t help the cause.

When Indiana tied, DeRozan had a great chance to take the lead late on, but after a good move, his finish at the rim was short and Indiana got the ball.  This was preceded by another ill-advised jumper, which when you’re shooting poorly, is what the defense will give you.  It’s important for DeRozan to recognize the distinction between being open and being left open, and he often doesn’t.  You could also point to Jose taking a jumper instead of running the clock down and dumping it inside, but the guy was having a great offensive game so you can’t fault him for shooting.The out-of-bounds call was 50-50, there is no way the refs could make a confident call on that one so they stuck with the decision made on the court, which was also 50-50.  I’m not mad about that call, I’m more pissed about the call George Hill got on the break where he got to tie the game.

Of course, Hill scored off a pick ‘n roll where DeRozan failed to come over from the wing, and Valanciunas came out too late.  Well run play by Indiana and great recognition by Hill of when to shoot.  Game over. Heartbreak.  Oh yeah, the Raptors had a chance to win but Bargnani airballed the fadeaway two.  Not a bad shot, he had the height advantage, just needed to set his feet, be calm and drain it.  Didn’t happen.  At least Devlin didn’t say “no call” to suggest that he got fouled.  Whatever.  Indiana deserved it, the little cameo by Augustin and the late-game play by Hill pulled them through.

I’m not going to analyze the death out of this game, and neither should you.  It was a good run for the Raptors who stuck with a pretty good team for most of the night and probably should’ve won but for some late-game execution (or lack of).  Lowry will eventually figure it out, Valanciunas will get it and Casey will start running more pick ‘n rolls for him (not many last night), and DeRozan and Bargnani won’t be this bad on offense.

Lowry missed half the pre-season and managed to rack up 8 assists and 5 steals, which is excellent, and even though the point guards failed to provide the stability needed in those clutch situations, it will come and perhaps if this was game 10 instead of game 1, we would’ve held on to the lead and not been outscored by 10 in the fourth.

I’m not even going to rip on Landy Fields who was the worst player for both teams.  Too early for that. Oh yes, the extension.  I already said what the Raptors should’ve done and they’ve ignored my sage advice.  I’m sure Blake or Garrett or someone else will have something to say about that.  All we can conclude at this point is that it sure didn’t motivate DeRozan for the opener.

Basketball’s back, just be happy for now.

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  • NyAlesund

    We lost the game by two despite the 36% from the field, compared to 47%.

    Field plus minus was +6, Lowry -1, Calderon -8, Bargnani -3, Val -7, DD -5. So, according to these stats Field was the best starter of the game!!!!

  • voy

    I’m still sporting a chub from ball being back.

    some thoughts that I didn’t get to last night:

    – looks like the biggest need this team is going to have is a wing man.  if dd isn’t scoring, fields putting up a goose-egg, and t.ross looking super nervous its going to be tough to close out games.  ideally you dont want your pg or a 7fter being your best perimeter players.

    – lastly, I think the second unit may need to get more scoring punch if they are going to get extended burn.  I can only imagine what Jose was thinking when he was out there with a nervous Ross, Amir, ED and I think the other guy was Anderson.  This being said, Jose made it work.  However, I think expecting him to do the same thing, as he did last night with this unit, every game is a little unrealistic.

    would love to see if Lowry can keep relatively foul-free and still be as aggressive as he was last night.  dude was a so much better than I thought.  I know its only one game but still…

    If Amir and ED are going to play together I’d like to see those guys try and brand themselves as junkyard dogs.  collectively they’ll probably give up size every night and I’d like to see them take that disadvantage and embrabce trying to counter it with all out effort, forearms to the oppositions face, knocking out devlin by jumping over the announcer’s table diving for loose balls etc etc.

    • mountio

      I think the key on the 2nd unit is not to have 5 man substitutions. The Raps should not play long stretches without at least one of KL, AB, JV or DD on the court. We just cant. As you accurately described .. at the start of the fourth, Jose is bouncing the ball aruond, looking like an idiot with no legit scoring options to go to. Since he cant beat his man off the dribble, we were screwed. Once KL came back in, we righted the ship a little offensively, but couldnt stop West for our lives..

      • Nilanka15

        Agreed.  Casey needs to stagger his substitutions.  He did a good job of it during preseason.  Not sure what happened last night.

        This isn’t hockey.  We don’t need our lineup split up into “shifts”.

        • mountio

          Agree – its kind of odd how he did it well in the preseason (where you would expect a little more of the “hockey” mentaility to get different people run .. yet struggled in this game. Hope thats just a one time thing ..

        • FLUXLAND

          Culture change, baby!

          You still think this was a defensive minded hire?

          You can put anyone on the sidelines to yell GO GO GO.  Sam got tired of the BC BS, Triano and Casey are both first time opportunist, happy with a HC gig.

          How quickly people forget the dubious Triano line ups and subs.

          • Nilanka15

            I still have Triano-induced nightmares 😐

            But I must say, the Raptors look better than the Lakers right now (probably the only time all season I can say this, so I couldn’t pass up the opporunity :P)

            • FLUXLAND

              They do! : ) 

              I got Brown-induced fits, followed by Jackson withdrawals. Somewhere, he’s writing a book on how this team should have been handled.

          • hater

            go apply for the job then dummy. u must be good at saying GO GO GO aftr takin it from FAQ lmao

          • p00ka

            “You still think this was a defensive minded hire?”

            So, you can’t get Triano’s reign out of your mind, think others shouldn’t forget, which has what to do with Casey?? ((Get the fk over it. He’s history around here,  but you’re welcome to go troll Portland fans though.)) Yet you seem to dispel 66 more recent games of Casey’s defensive magic, and whaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaabbit hop all over 1 game to question the defensive minded hire. Brilliant. Troll much?

            BTW, based on your style of deduction, Sam was also a “first time opportunist”, so no distinction where you seem to be trying to make one.

            “Sam got tired of the BC BS”

            Oh did he? You do realize he got fired, didn’t quit right? The “opportunists”, as you say, are just “happy with a HC gig”. And Sam wasn’t? Which you imply, distinguishing from the other “opportunists”. Really? You think Sam was happy to walk away from a HC job because he tired of BC? Yes, I’m sure he much prefers sitting at home playing tiddly-winks.

          • Observer

            Apparently you don’t remember that Casey has been a head coach before.

      • what the

        you watched the same game as i did and you are so right

      • Rubentech

        Forgot to mention the non call on the offensive foul West had on AB – either it was a flop or a foul. The result was a wide open shot by West which tightened the noose.

  • KaioKev

    Pretty good game by the Raptors throughout. Yes, that out of bounds call was a major decider in how the game would finish. I also go back to the David West jumper where Bargnani fell while defending him. Hopefully that doesn’t start a whole heap of noise on this forum about Bargs, who’s defense was solid all night. But those were the two plays (for me) that sealed the game. Imagine a game where the offense of DeRozan, Lowry, Bargnani and Calderon is clicking….

    • voy

      i was going to mention the flop.  hard to understand why guys, with the game on the line, flop risking a no-call from the ref and giving the other player either a layup or an open jumper.  even harder to understand why the refs continually reward the flop and blow the whiste.

      maybe bargs thought he was owed one from that super weak offensive foul push-off call by the ref from  earlier in the game. 

      either way, unless you play the perfect game no outcome is decided on just one play.  looking forward to seeing the boys learn and progress this year as a team.

      • AB7.38pt.on.CB4

        Flop ? Flop ? WTF ! Flop ? Which flop.

        I mean did you really see a flop there ? Maybe I m wrong but D West pushes Bargnani with his shoulder + his arm and is just so clear. Terrible call.

        • voy

          dude, you are going to honestly tell me Bargs didn’t overreact to the contact?  there is a difference between West going into the body and the defender jerking back like he was just taken out by a sniper.  Sure there was contact but nowhere near enough to send Bargs to the floor. 

          I thought West pushing Bargs on the raptor’s final shot was more of a foul than the bargs flop.  It didn’t help his cause though that he was trying a fade away instead of moving into the body.

          Anway, I still like Bargs and dont think any game is decided by just one play but I would have rather him tried to stand his ground a little more.

          • AB7.38pt.on.CB4

            I believe was on offensive foul. West made a predictable move and AB got him in the bag moving on his right side.That’s a push and a ref call should be there.

            The ref was just there while at the end I accept more a no call due to the dynamic of it .

            By the way  IMO AB should inbound the ball and look for KL. And live or die with it.

            • Nilanka15

              I actually agree with AB7.38pt.on.CB4 on this one.  I thought Bargnani played the possession fairly well.  IMO, there was enough contact to draw a charge.  But I’m not blaming the refs.  50/50 play.

              • unknown guest


        • sleepz

          He’ll be getting a call from the league today after they review the tapes.

          That will be his first flop warning.

      • KaioKev

        I didn’t think it was a flop. David West definitely pushed off with his arm and shoulder. Strong hard play by West. Strong but not strong enough D by Bargnani.

        • unknown guest

          Was it the play wherein he 1/2 fell onto his outstretched arm? That was not a flop.

  • AB7.38pt.on.CB4

    Here and there:

    zero to :Bill Spooner David Guthrie Mark Lindsay.Indiana got robbed by Refs against Miami in PO so David Stern sent in TO 3 wrestling referees that gave to the Pacers the green light on elbows/pushes/hooks and more to please the crowd.

    I had a phone call from an Indiana blogger who was not happy with D West game last night. Why ? He got 2 rebound only and you know, that’s it’s all that matters.

    Really ?

    • Destro

      David West is generally a good rebounder tho with numbers to prove it….

    • sleepz

      He also went 12-19 and took his team on his back down the stretch in a game they trailed by 10 with 5 minutes to go.

      • Destro

        Dont hurt em sleepz !

  • Th0m79

    Good game and it looks like we’re moving in the right direction. If either of our wing guys aside from DeRozan had hit a shot (I think Fields and Ross were like 0 for 11 combined), then we could have won the game. At least it was close and competitive though. Let’s hope DeRozan continues to develop with his big contract signed and done in his back pocket.

  • Nilanka15

    The reliance on jump shots during crunch time continues to haunt this team.  It’s been a problem going back to the Bosh days.  Not sure how many more tough losses it will take before the lesson is learned.

    As for the refs, it was brutal on both sides.  For every call that didn’t go our way, there were just as many calls where the Pacers were outraged over a non-call.  Brutal officiating, but it didn’t affect one team more than the other.  Not blaming the refs at all.

    DeRozan’s game is ridiculously predictable, driving into planted defenders, taking shots that have little chance of going in, then screaming in agony in a futile attempt to draw a whistle.  The refs haven’t been bailing him out for 3 years, and they’re not going to start now.  A shooting guard who can’t shoot is a HUGE problem, or in Colangelo’s eyes, deserving of $40 million.  WTF???

    • mountio

      DD showed no signs of the post up game that we saw in the preseason. Im hoping thats just because Indiana is probably the tallest / longest team we will see. But, if we are back to his old offensive game from last year .. yikes. He actually hit some unexpected longer shots last night .. but we can not count on that. Need him in the post or getting (all the way!) to the basket. Heres hoping … . !


      Finally.  “there were just as many calls where the Pacers were outraged over a non-call.” 

      And “It’s been a problem going back to the Bosh days”, yet the coaches keep changing. Hmmm. And wait who signs the players?

      DD – when the conversation about your game revolves around “getting to the line”, and not much else.. oh wait, spin move!…you clearly command 4/40M in BC-TO currency.  This is all in line with the BC M.O., why are people so outraged? Or do they think “he finally gets it”?   

  • Theswirsky

    This game did not come down to a single decision by the refs.  There were almost 190 individual possessions that could have had different results. 

    If anyone, after watching that replay, can say it definitevly went off Green… I’d like to borrow your rose coloured glasses and have a sip of your kool aid.  Its hot and sunny over hear in reality.

    • KaioKev

      To be honest, I initially thought it went off Calderon. I thought the refs officiate a terrible game overall –  as was said by Nilanka, plenty of non-calls both ways. But in terms of the out of bounds play the refs did the right thing and reviewed the play.

      • Nilanka15

        Before reviewing the play, the refs needed to discuss what the initial call should be.  A jump-ball would’ve been the right call. 

        • Maniacal

          agree agree agree – why can’t the initial call be “Raptor ball” and then review on replay… that was a BS call by the refs.. if the refs didn’t see it — how is there an initial call ?!?!?!?

          • Arsenalist

            That’s the rule.  They have to make an initial call as a “backup” in case the replay is inconclusive, which almost never happens.  Unfortunately for the Raptors, it happened yesterday.

            I think they need to change this rule to be a jumpball instead of copying what the NFL does.

            • Matt52

               Seriously.  If you can’t tell who’s ball from 3, 4 or 5 camera angles, jump ball indeed.

            • KaioKev

              But wait, wasn’t the initial call, before the discussion, Pacer ball? Then when it was deemed inconclusive and reviewed, they decided to stick with the original call on the floor?

        • unknown guest

          Exactly. With that much time left, it was a crucial call. Jump ball would have been right, even if JC wouldn’t have won jump.

  • no diss

    so am i the only one who noticed fields had 0 points and we lost by 2, blam AB and demar all you want but thats just unacceptable 

    • Nilanka15

      Fields missed 6 shots.
      Valanciunas missed 9 shots.
      DeRozan missed 9 shots.
      Bargnani missed 11 shots.

      4/5 of our starting lineup shot a combined 30% from the floor (while the Pacers as a team shot 47%).  We should be thanking our lucky stars we didn’t lose by 20.

      • Dan Morgan

        Yeah it was a pretty abysmal shooting performance after the first few minutes. Those two clunkers Ross threw up from three were comical. Opening night nerves probably. 

  • no diss


  • hateslosing

    This teams half court defence and our rebounding is much better with Fields on rather than off. I think if we are really focused on D and being a tough team, Fields needs more time on the floor late in the game. Hopefully the shots will start falling eventually.

    • mountio

      Maybe .. but he was god awful last night. I agree on the defensive end .. but he has to prove hes not an offensive liability … which he clearly was last night

  • nba_socrates

    We lost because overpaid 40 mil dollar man Derozan cant show up in the 4th 

    • what the


      • nba_socrates


    • j bean

      Have you ever been on a team were you have one guy who always points to one of his teammates as the reason for a loss? That guy is never one of the best players.
      This game wasn’t decided by one play or one player or one bad call. Yes if one missed shot had been made or a call had gone the other way the Raptors could have pulled off a big upset win but it is a combination of things that decided the outcome, not that one player never showed up for the 4th. As far as the 40 mill being over paid, one game into the contract could be a little early to pronounce judgement. 

      • nba_socrates

        One game? are you serious, 4 year player and he has not showed nothing to warrant that contract. Again Colanclownlo making mistakes. Derozan is just soft, with that athlethic ability he only dunks when the lane is clear and never wants any kind of contact. He should have been traded for some pieces and a first round pick.This will hurt our salary cap in the future.
        Also drafting a bust in Terrence Ross is something i will be delving into on a later date.

        • Nilanka15

          After a career 6 minutes played, you’ve declared Ross a bust?  That’s quite the Magic 8-Ball you’re using as a scouting tool….

          • nba_socrates

            He should be sent to the D league to play with the boys and hone his skills. The NBA is a mans game and hes not good enough. Bulking up 20 extra pounds should help too. But right now hes a BUST and i dont need no magic 8 ball to see that

        • j bean

          Trade DeMar? Who would you end up with that is better? 

          • nba_socrates

            Hes not worth 40 mil, it doesnt matter if we dont get someone better in the trade. The ultimate goal is an NBA championship and hes not going to be a factor in delivering an NBA championship to Toronto, not now not in 4 years, so why pay him that amount of money.
            If it was a 4yr 20 mil deal id be cool with it but 40mil for someone whose not gonna a winner give me a break.

            • Destro

              It DOES matter because the salaries have to match…

              • nba_socrates

                And his current ability does not match that salary. 

                • Destro

                  Doesnt matter the contract is signed ur stuck with it now…

            • j bean

              So if we follow your logic you offer DeMar 5 mill which he would reject and he signs with somebody else after the season. No big deal cause he wouldn’t be part of your championship team any way. In fact all the guys you don’t think will be a factor in being a part of your championship team you pay at the low end of scale cause why give them all that money. It doesn’t matter if you get someone better when you make trades just as long as you get rid of  the ones like DD who you don’t think has what it takes. So now you have lots of cap space to do what exactly? Bring in the free agents that will all be clamoring to play for your vision of a championship Raptors team? Good luck with that one.

              • nba_socrates

                DD is just not good enough. What part of good enough dont you get? GMs these days want to do the safe thing and keep their jobs in the process forgetting the main aim which is to get the pieces to build a championship caliber team.
                This is why i admire someone like Daryl Morey who knew the rooster he had was never gonna win anything, soo he cleaned house, amnestied, traded players soo he can go out there get some cap space and try to get a player who can be a key to a championship. He tried to get Howard but it didnt work out, but he got Harden who is a gamer and in the summer they can go for another piece to build that championship type of team.
                This is what all GMs whose teams arent good should do instead of just rewarding players who have already hit their ceiling and wont be improving much and offering ridiculous contracts. And the fans just go with it and when results arent great they use one of their favorite phrases, ‘oh that player is overpaid’ then the cycle continues.

              • EmarErozan

                He would have been an rfa

                • j bean

                  You’re right but the outcome is still the same. nba_socrates won’t match anything above 5 mill. 

        • Ihatehaters

          Colanclownlo. Clever.

          • Lorenzo

             I got a good laugh out of it too

  • sleepz

    I don’t blame refs, especially after re-watching the last 5 minutes of that game.

    No defensive adjustments. Indiana over the last 2 minutes went pick and roll with West and got their shot every time.

    Execution. They did, we didn’t.Game probably should have been over on the possession which West got the ball at the ft line and kicked to G.Hill for the 3 he missed with about 1 minute left. Wonderful play.

    As for the Raps, as a defensive team, that last few minutes was quite telling. Call me a hater, but why have Andrea on West at that point when Pacers are clearly attacking that match-up and getting whatever they want? 

    Could the Raps not have run a play at the end of the game that got the ball in Lowry’s hands?

    Derozan extension – BC already did this with Andrea and once again decided to bid against himself. I’m a huge believer in paying talent that gets you wins. These last 2 recent extensions have cemented my opinion of management. Raps will have over $20 million invested in Andrea and Demar next year. $30 million when Fields poison pill year takes effect. Wise business decisions? Prudent team building?

    Instead of listing the myriad of reasons why this is probably another bad contract waiting to be called what it is I’m going to hope for some entertaining games this year and am jumping on the Andrew Wiggins 2014 train, early!

    With the “financial flexibility” gone and not much cap room to go get other players, this team is one Lowry injury away from being right where they were last year. JV can only do so much as a rook. Have a feeling this situation will come to a head next year and we’ll get a little lottery luck and get a homegrown franchise talent.

    BC would be tarred and feathered anywhere else for giving out these deals to these type of players and outbidding himself.

    • Matt52

       I agree with your post.

      Only thing I want to mention is the Fields poison pill.  That does not effect Toronto.  His cap hit will be $6.23M each year regardless of what he is paid in year 1, 2, or 3. 

      • Destro

        You didnt need to sign him at all IS the poison…

        • Matt52

           That is another matter altogether.

      • sleepz

        Thats for the correction Matt. My bad

        • sleepz


    • Nilanka15

      RE: DeRozan, our only hope is that he shows marginal improvement this year, while the team floats around .500.  If so, I hope some opposing GMs would potentially see some “upside” in DeRozan.

  • Roarque

    Was it just me or did others notice the way AA sees the court so well and made some nice passes for points. The second unit reminded me of the Raptors of 2011/12 – wonder why…oh, they are the Raptors of 2011/12!
    Harden gets his deal and shows he deserved it – DDR gets his deal and – oh, shit.
    AB had the flu and still showed up – kinda. Tough night when his man played his ass off – cudos to David West, the guy was a beast out there and was the difference,

    • Nilanka15

      Agree on Anderson.  Nothing flashy by any means, but just played smart basketball.  Can’t tell from the boxscore.

      • what the

        kinda like Gary Forbes

  • All I know is Bargs and/or DD are not clutch guys and should not have the ball at the end of the game! It should be Lowry and hopefully soon Ross or Jonas. Bargs is just not clutch and can’t depend on DD for anything legit!

    All in All, I am not totally pissed about a 2 point loss to the Pacers on the first game of the season. Tough first game and they actually gave it a go for a while there. It is kind of hard to get a team, with half of the starting lineup playing their first game on the team, to finish and hold the lead. Hopefully they will learn this soon!

    • Destro

      You’d give Ross the ball with the game on the line ? Da fuck are you high on breh ? Hes not even going to play much let alone get that opportunity lol…

      • Read BREH! Do the words “hopefully soon” make any F’in sense to you? Did I say he should have the ball with the game on the line BREH? NO THE F%CK I DID NOT! Someday however, I think he could be a better option than what happened last night, DD missing an easy layup and Bargs just flat out airballing an easy jumper!

        Put down the bong, put the cap on the 5th of whatever you are drinking and figure things out!

        With Ross’s “supposed” ability to shoot, I think he would be a better option then the Can’t Shoot DD or the unclutch Bargnani, once he gets a little experience under his belt! Since you are the expert Destro, who on this team should be taking the last shot?

        • Destro

          No time any time in the NEAR future do i want or will terrence e Ross be given the final shot with game on the line…

        • Destro

          Honestly last night should have been Lowry or Calderon who took the last shot…

          •  Then you should also see I said Lowry should have the ball in that spot! But in the future, need a wing or a low post to be that clutch player. The PG should not be that guy and definitely not the 2 guys who have proven they can’t! I would say Fields but I actually would prefer Ross over Fields for one clutch shot. Calderon I can see but it really needs to be a wing who can do it. DD just doesn’t cut it in that regard and Bargnani is not clutch at all.

            Again, you bag on Ross after his first game! Did you see what your beloved Andre Drummond did? It will take time for these rookies to get going. Jonas has actually pro experience so he was able to look decent. Ross and Drummond are not going to dominate the game right off the bat, no matter how you feel about either!

          • what the

            please don’t say Dribbles that fucker and fields has to go

      • Solo Miranda

        This is the guy who can’t read even write, stop acting black bruh!!!

  • voy

    indy looks like a really interesting team with Hill and George in the backcourt and Hibbert up front.  I think they gotta consider moving Granger for more of a team guy and they will have 4 realy nice pieces to move forward with.

  • Destro

    Hey Arsenalist get in here you fckn scumbag….

    That was Andrea that ran right in front of G Hill driving to the basket to guard West who wasnt going to get the ball on that play and your trying blame Demar for that whos on the other side of the floor….lying ass shitstain….

    • cesco

      Why the insults ? you are lucky if you did not receive a warning . DeMar was no more at fault than Andrea or Jonas . AA should have come out from covering Hibbert ( with Jonas ) and he did not do that . DeMar could have edged closer to the middle , he was too far away to react . Andrea could have trapped Hill and leave West to receive a pass . Jonas could have left Hibbert who would have received a pass under the basket . Overall , the main responsible are Lowry and AA .

      • Destro

        Im calling a spade a spade,it was AB’s fault on that play…He made the mistake because he has no defensive instincts he has to be told where to be and when to rotate the natural decisions def he cant make for himself…..Last shot of the game the instinctive move is to leave West and force Hills hand with the ball…you rather a 10 ft floater uncontested or West shootin a 18 footer from the wing…

        Thats simple instinct that he doesnt have which is why he didnt do it…

        But to watch the game and then blame Demar for that is nothing but pure dishonest hating….  

    • Ihatehaters

      Why you so mad?

  • Slap Dog Hoops

    I would not look at that loss too negatively.  It’s the first game of the season and the raptors performance gave much to be optimistic about.  So what if they lost to the Pacers, what we should keep in mind is that the pacers had to fight to get the win, something that they would have never had to do in the past.  

  • Hey at least in other news: James Johnson went just 1-for-8 from the field and turned it over four times in his 21 minutes. He recorded a negative-13 plus/minus in the short amount of time he played. Good decision, right?

  • Dan M

    Basically if they shoot 39% instead of 36% and get a charge called on David West late they win handily. A little discouraged by the small forward situation. Fields was invisible for the most part, and Anderson is not good enough to be in a playoff NBA rotation. Ross isn’t ready for heavy minutes yet. Kleiza needs to pull himself together after a terrible preseason or they will be the worst team on the wing in the conference. 

  • CalgaryRapsFan

    DeRozan needs to stop taking it so soft to the basket, throwing up circus shots and hoping for the refs to bail him out on 50/50 calls.  He needs to grow a pair and start taking it hard to the rack, trying to posterize anyone and everyone, that way the refs won’t have a choice but to blow the whistle.  Stop blaming the refs.

    The Raps’ biggest weakness is the wings.  If you look at DeRozan, Fields, Anderson, Ross and Lucas (who was playing SG during his only appearance), our wings shot a combined 5-26!  Our wings shot a combined 19.2% on 26 shots!  Simply awful!  That’s the game right there.

    • mountio

      agree 100%. Need to feed T Ross more mintues .. as hes the only one of the crew with a decent stroke!

      • what the

        “need to feed T Ross more min.” we need to get Calderon the fuch outta here thats what we need to do, that fn dribbles and don’t forget Fields too then we can BALL

    • Mos_jef

      Derozan needs to learn how to pass the ball when he beats his man and the help comes over. On one play in the first, Hibbert and Hansbrough both came to help and Demar tried to jump over both of them, while JVal was Wide open underneath. When the help defender knows that he’s not going to pass, they can help early and be planted to defend without fouling.

    • Lorenzo

       This is what I’ve been saying for years now, preach

    • Destro

      He was taking it strong to the basket are you crazy ? He got hit a couple times by 2 pacers at the rim trying to go up…those were not 50/50 calls in the least,refs simply did not blow em but they were most definitely fouls…

      You can say Caseys coaching cost them,there cold shooting down the stretch,soft D any number of things but the refs were terrible and they definitely played a huge hand in that loss….thats not blaming them thats calling it how it is….they blew a key out of bounds call too which gave Indy an extra possession….

      The hating sometimes is so bad and so sheepish in here….lol @ those being 50/50 calls…got dayum lol.

  • Ad3553335

     Jason (Toronto)Did Colangelo really just tie up 60 mil in DeRozan and Fields???John Hollinger  (12:13 PM)This actually happened, yes. Toronto could have had max caps pace next summer too.BC basically decided: “Hey i cant bring anybody to Toronto anyways so might as well overpay a bench player disguised as a core player.” Also, he might not even be here past this season.

    • Canadian Paul

      I think we were all shocked that Bargnani got $10M per year. Now, it looks like a decent salary. I think we’re paying for potential with Demar. Whether it’ll be realized is the question.

    • Jamshid

       I be really sad if BC is gone next summer. The team is in such mess and the long term commitments that he has made now, make this team so limited that any new GM coming in , can not really do anything for additional 2 years.

      I like to see him stay around and see how he is going to spin the truth. I also like to see his biggest supporters , Matt52 and the herd, and how they are going to support this guy.

      Lets not forget, Lowry will be up for a big promotion next year which seems to be like a MAX deal !!! Are we going to sign him or did we just have him on a rental for a year and 2 and gave up a 1st round pick for him ??

      • Nilanka15

        This is one of the most questionable signings in franchise history.  Even the Turkoglu deal, as horrible as it turned out, made “some” sense when the ink was first drying.  But this DeRozan deal is nothing short of nonsensical.

        Having said that, ownership has never shown a reluctance to empty their pockets in the past.  Lowry will get extended next year, whether he’s worth it or not.

        • Jamshid

           And to be fair, BC has shown an amazing capability to off load the horrendous contracts that he awards the following summer with ease.
          However, isn’t it sad that each summer our GM has to spend his time and resources and try to fix his mistakes from last summer ??

          As far as Lory goes, I am agree with you 100%. I think he will sign a max deal or very close to max deal with us next Oct !!!

          • Destro

            Which horrendous contracts did he off load ?

        •  I really think you guys need to remember the horrible signings of the past before you say this is the worst signing in history! Don’t forget, resigned Michael Stewart to a deal actually worst than this one, drafted Araujo, Turkoglu was by far worst (at least DD wants to be here), J O’neal deal was dumb as a box of rocks. Can we go over the others too? DD is at the very least a guy who can give minutes and not look like a monkey F a football. Compared to what  Raps would have had to pay him if they let him go to RFA, this actually was a bit of a deal.

          Now I am not saying DD was worth it, just saying with all the blown out of proportion deals out there, this one doesn’t suck as bad. Could be worst, could be paying Greg Oden $9 million per to go through rehab for 3 years straight.

          • Solo Miranda

            Agree, BC can fixed up his mess by getting rid of J.O, Turk etc. so we’ll be ok. I just hope DD shows his improvement this season.

          • Nilanka15

            I’ll give you the Yogi Stewart signing…that was awful.  Hoffa was a draft pick (I don’t count that as a “signing”, but yes, that was brutal too).

            But in terms of Turkoglu and O’Neal, both those signings made sense (to some degree) at the time.  Turk was coming off the best year of his career, leading the Magic to the finals, and the Raptors were expected to space the floor, and play inside-out ball in the same manner.  He may not have been the best personnel fit with Calderon being a ball-dominant player, but that’s a different story.

            O’Neal, although injury-prone, and a shadow of his former self, was brought in to help in the low-post after getting dominated by Howard in the playoffs the year before.  These signings made sense.  They were gambles, but still made sense.

            This DeRozan deal….there’s absolutely no reason for it.  None.  Even if you think DeRozan will turn into a great player one day, why extend him now?  Why not wait until restricted free agency and overpay then?  We’ve completely eliminated our cap space this way.

            • sleepz

              I think that is the part that even the most hardcore BC supporter would have difficulty explaining. You didn’t have to do it now and you had all the leverage as the GM however he gave him the extension.

              B. Jennings and T.Evans, who I feel are currently better players than Derozan both had their teams decide to wait until the offseason before offering them anything. I feel the Raps should have taken the same approach with Demar.

              • Destro

                Further to this they are ruining there cap number for next off season with these signings….if DD regresses you’ve fucked up ur cap for him and Landry ? How is that rebuilding ?

                • sleepz

                  Its not. You can’t trust BC with cap space or even the prospect of having it.

                •  But haven’t we all complained that cap space has done nothing for this team? Can’t bring in talent with it so what is the point of having it.

                  I just believe that DD would have cost more after this year than now, so might as well get him a bit cheaper. Because no matter how he does, a team will tell him he is worth max or something and he will believe it and Raps will have to pay to keep him. That or let him go for nothing. At least the current deal keeps some form of talent in house and really, I think if this team can grow together, they can be something good. No need for cap space with young players locked up.

                  I will also say this, DD is overhyped as a #1 for a team. But now he IMO is no more than a #4 guy once Lowry and Jonas start to take over the team. $38 mill for a #4 guy really is the going rate nowadays. Sad really!

              • cdub

                There is only one answer.  Obviosuly the raptors felt it was in their best interest to lock him up now, at that price.  Meaning A)  They definately want Derozan and B) They felt they would have to pay more to retain him next year.  I’m not giving an opinion on the actual deal, just what the raptors must have thought.  Otherwise there would be no deal.

      • Matt52

        I nearly typed what I am actually thinking.  Then I drove back on to the high road.  Lets spell this out nice and slow:

        I am disgusted with the DeRozan contract. 

        I am disgusted with the collective decisions to put $20M in to Fields, Kleiza, and DeRozan.

        I am disgusted with the decision to give up all the hard earned flexibility on players that have never contributed to winning anything of substance or importance at the NBA level.

        I am disgusted with Colangelo’s decision to (yet again) overpay for his own guys.

        I am disgusted with the combination of DD’s contract with Fields’ contract – Fields by itself was hardly ideal but manageable; DD and Fields together is a tough pill to swallow.

        There is no positive way to spin the current Raptor situation from my perspective.  Things were looking very bright and promising with numerous options.  Now the Raps have to rely on internal growth,  financially balanced trades, and the MLE.  If Fields finds his shot, if DeRozan attacks the basket and post like preseason, if Ross becomes a solid ‘3&D’ threat in the league, and if JV becomes a beast, things will be pretty good.  Of those 4 if’s, only JV is something I would feel confident arguing, debating, or placing money on.  The Raptors continue to be as they have been since 2005: searching for premier wing.

        I hope you aren’t this insecure with women (or men) as you are with Lowry.  He is signed for 2 full seasons less a game and the trade for him was a steal.  Relax.

        • Jamshid

          It was a great to see you admit to your mistakes in defending BC and finally came clean and see where this team is now.

          As far as Lowry, Don’t worry about me. It is BC that you need to worry about. If I am not mistaking, Lowry’s contract will be finished in summer of 2014. This means BC will loss him in that summer if he does not extend him next year.

          Looking at BC’s track record, Lowry’s numbers, what we have given up for him and the amount of advertisement that is done for this guy, I say Lowry will be offered an extension next Oct before he hit the FA market that summer.

          I guess we will wait and see who is right, Again 🙂

          • Matt52

            I am sorry to say this but you are not a bright guy.  Circumstances have just changed to the tune of nearly $10M.  Circumstances change, my opinion changes.  My opinion in the past reflected the situation in the past. 

            As for Lowry, how will BC lose him?  The Raps will still retain Bird Rights and be able to offer him more money than any other team.  We’re not talking about a 33 year old coming off a max deal in 2 summers time.  And speaking of Lowry, he is exactly the type of guy you want to give a $10M extension to – he rebounds, defends, creates for others and himself, can shoot, can score, gets on teammates, and is a leader.  A likely high lottery pick is a steal for Lowry – an absolute steal.  Lowry will be eligible for an extension on July 14, 2013.  I hope he gets one at that time.

            I am not sure what you have to be right about.  Giving Lowry an extension when permitted is a no-brainer.

            • Jamshid

               “I am sorry to say this but you are not a bright guy.  Circumstances have
              just changed to the tune of nearly $10M.  Circumstances change, my
              opinion changes.  My opinion in the past reflected the situation in the
              past. ”

              I am sorry to say that you are the one who is NOT so bright and can not see the track records, judge it and see the future.

              Some of us here, knew this day will come when we looked at Kapano, Hedo and … contracts.

              Some of us knew from long time ago that financial flexibility with BC means nothing when looking at BC’s past.

              You remind me of those people who held on to Nortel stock when it was dropping till it became 50 cents. They were also in denial and were supporting the company blindly for a long time.

              It seems like you just can’t judge the past and deduce a conclusion that can help you see the future little more clear.

              It is fine by me as I was proven right about BC, direction of the team under his management and you were proven wrong.

              As far as Lowry goes, no reason to argue now.

              The writings are on the wall.
              The point here my friend , is NOT extending him or NOT extending him. It is about extending him with the right contract at the right time and not rushing like past.

              Knowing BC, Lowry will get the Max or very close to max contract (13 million) before summer of 2014.

              Again, no need to argue here as time will prove me right again about BC.

              For now, Enjoy the season and read the posts you wrote on defending BC’s genius as a top GM in NBA all summer long while the herd was applauding you.
              The herd seems angry these days 😉

              • FAQ

                Isn’t taxation higher in Canada than the USA… so DD’s contract had to be juiced up for the difference?

                Maybe his $38 Mil contract is only $32 Mil in US dollars.

                • cesco

                  I believe you are wrong . Maximum tax rate for Ontario is 29% federal + 11% provincial for a total of 40 % . In California it is 35% federal ( going up to 39% in January 2013 ) + 10% state tax for a total of 45% . All figures rounded off . If I am wrong , someone please correct me .

                • lol how did we get here from talking about the raptors?

              • Matt52

                Can you at least stick on one topic?  When have I ever talked about Turk or Kapono?  Those contracts were signed before I even made a single post on RR. 

                The Nortel comment is comical.  If we are comparing the Raptors situation with Nortel then when the trendline was broke heading in to the fall of 1997 that would have been the cue to get out with a 2% close below that line.  Guess what?  The Raps just closed 2% below the trend line.  I’m not optimistic or pessimistic on the Raptors right now.  I am on the sidelines watching – and if it was with Nortel likely with a handsome profit.  When you are unsure of what is happening, you exit your positions and wait.  Patience is the hardest part.  Relating to the Raptors, I am going to be patient, wait, and enjoy some games.  As currently constructed, they still likely are competing for a playoff spot.  The issue I have moving forward is the ceiling appears to be within reach and the opportunities to break through are limited.

                You keep jumping around on Lowry – whatever the issue is now.  Lowry is a gamer and hopefully an extension does happen.  July 14, 2013 is when it could happen at the earliest.

                As for BC, like stated before, the circumstances have changed.  His history is what it is.  He has made some remarkable decisions and some stupid decisions.  His latest decision on DeRozan has certainly changed my perspective moving forward.  If that makes me wrong, so be it. 

                • Jamshid

                  The fact that in the span of few days , you moved yourself to side lines from being a die hard BC fans for over a year is good enough for me and a move in a right direction for you. 

                  Few more moves from BC in near future and I am sure even you, will see him as a fraud that he really is …

                  Till then, I will just let BC do the talking with his moves … Time will prove how wrong you were these whole time. 

                • Matt52

                  You seem to confuse looking at the big picture and seeing reason for optimism with unbridled affection for Colangelo. 

                  I am so glad your disdain for BC and the hope for his failure trumps the desire to see success from the Raptors.  That is a really healthy thought process and outlook.

                • Jamshid

                  LOL, After being proven wrong and embarrassed like this 🙂 You still have the nerve to talk about future and big pictures !!! You did not see the future and big picture till it hit you on the face ( Demar’s contract). Anyway, as I said earlier, I am just glad to see you end your cheer leading for BC and moving to side lines 😉 

            • j bean

              Can you give me a scenario where DeMar’s salary will absolutely prevent an opportunity to improve the team from taking place?

              • Matt52

                 An unbalanced, financially motivated trade that sends more salary to Toronto versus what the Raps send out.

                • j bean

                  BC still has lots of options to facilitate that trade.

                • Matt52

                  I’m not sure how he has lots of options.  He now has 1 expiring contract in Calderon.  That is it.  Roster spaces are now an issue.  No first round draft picks are available.  The much touted flexibility is gone.  That is my issue.  The signing of DeRozan runs contrary to everything BC has spewed the last 2 years about the rebuild.

                  Also, he could have made an offer in free agency between a possible increased salary cap, new CBA rules for luxury tax teams, use of the amnesty, and withdrawing the qualifying offer to DeRozan, he could have had close to a max contract to offer.  Raps have not had great success in free agency in the past but now they have absolutely no chance.

                • j bean

                  According to BC they still have a tremendous amount of flexibility going into the trade deadline. 
                  I can’t see a scenario that has any likelihood of actually coming up where we can say the DD deal at 9-10 mill will prevent an acquisition that could get done if DD was signed for 7 mill. If you can come up with specific players in a plausible scenario that shows the DD signing has effectively tied their hands and prevents them from improving the team you are a better man than me.

                • Matt52

                   DeRozan was an expiring contract as well.  Instead of $3.3M coming off the books and the opportunity to trade him to a team giving them the opportunity to negotiate a contract of their own, he is now locked in at $9.5M for the next 4 years.  All the leverage of restricted free agency is out the window now.

                  Raps have fewer trade opportunities and fewer free agency opportunities.

                  We are talking about a near $40M contract for a player who has not shown the ability to contribute in any manner more than inefficient scoring.

                  Key words: “according to BC”.  Do you think he is going to come out and say, “Sheeet, that was a mistake on my part” 24 hours after signing the extension?

                  I am struggling to see how anyone can’t see the negative implications for the Raptors as a result of this contract. 

        • sleepz

          No one should have any issues with Lowry. Well worth his current deal. Not a fan of giving up first rounders as they are gold imo, but Lowry is a baller, which we all knew long before last night.

          Food for thought going forward, but Kyle has got to be sitting at home last night thinking “that 4 year $56mil deal should be on it’s way in the offseason”.

          There is no way AB is making $11, Demar is making $10 and Lowry is not blessed with close to the max next year.

          I don’t have an issues paying players who perform and contribute significantly to winning but we have locked up a core of players thus far with no real upside outside of JV. DEmar might get better but he’s missing many components that good 2 guards have naturally. This team is heading down a bad path right now and Colangelo is stepping on the gas to get there. 
          Wiggins ’14 

          • Jamshid

            I said the same thing earlier. Lowry is dreaming of milking  the Cash Cow right now and based on what we have seen from BC with Kapano, Hedo, Jose, Amir, DD, Keliza, Fields and … he will have no problem to surprise his die hard fans like Matt52 and Pooka with a MAX contract or 56 for 4 years in near future.

            • Matt52

               Actually I think sleepz said, and he can correct me if I am wrong, that he has no issue paying Lowry because he is a baller.  That was a point I also made.  The difference between Kapono, Turk, Jose, Amir, DD, Kleiza, and Lowry is that Lowry is really good…. like really, really good.

              As an aside, can you learn to spell names.  I am glad you have finally figured out there is no “e” in Lowry.  You need to work on KapOno and KLEIZa now.

            • Matt52

               Actually I think sleepz said, and he can correct me if I am wrong, that he has no issue paying Lowry because he is a baller.  That was a point I also made.  The difference between Kapono, Turk, Jose, Amir, DD, Kleiza, and Lowry is that Lowry is really good…. like really, really good.

              As an aside, can you learn to spell names?  I am glad you have finally figured out there is no “e” in Lowry.  You need to work on KapOno and KLEIZa now.

              • Jamshid

                LOL, I must be really getting to you that you have to get personal every single time. Spelling names , LOOOOOL.
                Relax pal, I know you were wrong and I taught you a lesson 🙂 but it is ok, look at it as a positive. you learned something 😉 . From a die hard fan of a BC to a side liner :).  As I said to you many times, nothing personal here. Spelling names , LOOOOOLL.Now, as far as Lowry goes, I have no problem paying him as well BUT I have problem with OVER PAYING HIM !!

                What is lowry worth ?? 10 million a year, 12 million a year, 13 million a year or a MAX money.

                To me , Lowry is worth 10-13 million a year and anything above that is over paying again.

                Now will BC over pay 😉 The odds are that he will with a max contract or something around 14. Then you have about  about 50 million on AB, DD, Big Val, Lowry, Fields, Amir . 

                How many games a team like that will win and will it every be able to compete in Eastern conference !!!

                Spelling name , LOOOOOL ,…. Matt , you are the Best Pal 🙂

  • FAQ

    Arse:– Didn’t you notice the refs allowing much more physical contact?  This disadvantages the butterfly players like DD who expects pussy-soft calls.  Have the refs been told to allow more heavy contact this season?

    Also, Casey played everybody except Kleiza.. who is a heavy contact player.  Perhaps Casey was not playing for a win… and was surprised how close the game was going into the 4th quarter.  Did Casey’s coaching lose the game?

    • Destro

      DD got hit hard a bunch of times none of that was pussy soft….

      • enlightenment

         Yup, early in the 2nd quarter i believe, bodies met him in the air, his entire momentum changed from forward to bouncing backwards a bit, thats clearly a foul.

        Also who remembers Aaron gray throwing his arms allover the man that beat him? The play before, a pacers arm literally finds itself between the two arms of the shooter (bargs?), and pulls left, completely destroying the shot by pulling at the arm, it was counted a block. Aaron looked pissed at that nocall and it explains his reaction.

        Refs were shit. Wings were shit. Lowry was God, Val got me dreaming big.

        • Nilanka15

          Principle of Verticality.  Defenders are entitled to the space above their bodies.  It doesn’t matter if they jump.  It’s not a foul unless they’re moving or reaching.

          • FAQ

            I watched the game replay today, and there was a lot of “Horizonality” in some of those blocks by the Pacers which the refs ignored.  Same goes with the Raps.

            Now that “flopping” is being ignored by refs, it seems this game was very physical… and the Raps game play announcers noted that as well.

            I’m not complaining about the non-calls… it just seemed a lot different from last season reffing.  Let’s wait and see what happens in Brooklyn on Saturday.

            • hater

              so ur saying after watching 1 raps game and no other games around the league that the refs are allowing more physical plays? ,,,,i watched the other openin games and they reffed just as they did last season or any other season. ur pussy soft

        • Matt52

           That last line is gold.

      • FAQ

        … and he crumbled like an oatmeal cookie …. so obvious..!!!