San Antonio Spurs 116 Final

Recap | Box Score

103 Toronto Raptors
Amir Johnson, PF 28 MIN | 9-11 FG | 1-2 FT | 9 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 1 BLK | 1 TO | 19 PTS | -2Played very well as far as I’m concerned; would be an A+ but he took that three; I can’t forgive those. I really don’t have much to say about Amir other than I appreciate how he just shows up and does his job.
Jonas Valanciunas, C 28 MIN | 6-8 FG | 2-2 FT | 4 REB | 2 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 4 TO | 14 PTS | -1014 points off 8 shots is not bad, but 4 rebounds, not so much. With Gay, and his 19 shots, exiled out west, I assumed we’d see JV call for the ball a bit more, but it didn’t happen. I’m just floating this out there strictly for discussion, but how untouchable is JV, really?
Kyle Lowry, PG 32 MIN | 4-10 FG | 0-0 FT | 7 REB | 7 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 4 TO | 11 PTS | -4Zero trips to the line and brutal shooting from the field, but the near triple-double should be rewarded. Was a step off, but maybe I’m just seeing something that wasn’t there.
DeMar DeRozan, SG 30 MIN | 6-16 FG | 7-7 FT | 0 REB | 7 AST | 0 STL | 1 BLK | 2 TO | 19 PTS | -70 rebounds…I mean, he didn’t even grab 1 or 2 accidental ones like Bargnani used to. Led the team in scoring, but needed 16 shots to get 19 points. You do have to appreciate how he saw the floor and got others involved though.
Terrence Ross, SG 38 MIN | 4-13 FG | 2-2 FT | 4 REB | 1 AST | 0 STL | 1 BLK | 5 TO | 14 PTS | -6Can we agree that Ross isn’t the long term solution for replacing Gay in the starting lineup? I’d much rather Fields, if for nothing else than Ross would provide a spark off the bench that Fields lacks.
Landry Fields, SF 19 MIN | 1-5 FG | 2-2 FT | 5 REB | 2 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 4 PTS | -13Zero, dude lacks spark. Rebounds well, but god, man, do something. Play with some passion, man.
Steve Novak, SF 28 MIN | 2-4 FG | 0-0 FT | 3 REB | 0 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 6 PTS | -154 shots in 28 minutes. Yes the Spurs play defense like champs, but 4 shots in 28 minutes? You had the likes of Baynes, Bonner and Diaw covering you; it’s not like they were up on you like Bruce Bowen.
Austin Daye, SF 14 MIN | 1-5 FG | 2-3 FT | 1 REB | 1 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 4 PTS | +6I had forgotten Daye was on this team.
Dwight Buycks, PG 18 MIN | 4-9 FG | 1-1 FT | 5 REB | 3 AST | 3 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 10 PTS | -3All his production came in garbage time during the last 6 minutes of the game with most of the Spurs icing themselves down on the bench.
Julyan Stone, SG 4 MIN | 1-2 FG | 0-0 FT | 0 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 2 PTS | -11Yea…
Dwane Casey
I’m too tired.

Three Things We Saw

  1. This was one of those games that you just put behind you. The Raptors were too short-staffed to maintain the excellent 1st quarter, that frankly, happened to catch the Spurs off guard and forced them to quickly pull up their pants, adjust, neutralize, and counter rather than slowly execute while keeping the Raptors in the rear-view.
  2. I realize the bench was short, but they had contributed 9 points up until the 4th quarter, with another 13 coming in the last 5.5 minutes of the game (3 of those came in the last second when Daye felt the need to get to the rack, hit the layup and stick the AND1 as time expired). Fortunately once the new guys get here, and Casey has something to work with, this wont be the case anymore. Hopefully, how do I know?
  3. The Raptors really had no chance; these two teams are on opposite ends of the spectrum AND the Raptors were short handed. All four of the new guys could have contributed and helped to a degree, but the end result would have been the same.

  • yousefelso

    What a lazy post. I expect more from Raptors Republic.

    • Robert Wright

      What a stupid comment, but exactly what was expected of you

      • yousefelso

        You can never avoid personal attacks at this site can you?

  • Scott

    I enjoyed how you suggest Fields start in place of Ross in Ross’ writeup, then shat all over Fields for lack of passion in his writeup. It made me chuckle.

    • Andrey

      LOL what’s up with that? made no sense. We need to develop Ross. One game and hes out? Let him play.

    • Sammy

      With a depleted bench, it would have made more sense to bring Ross off the bench, and use his athleticism as a spark. Neither makes for a good starter if you ask me.

      • WhiteVegas

        I think we might as well start Ross to develop him / increase his value / see what he’s got. If he plays terrible then bring him off the bench, but if he’s doing ok just let it ride. Knowing Casey, Salmons will be starting and playing heavy minutes at Ross expense.

        • 2damkule

          as the recent trade exhibited, ‘showcasing’ a player can backfire. gay was essentially given free rein to do as he pleased, i assume the intent of which was to showcase him to the league and elevate his value, but all it did was show his true colours.

        • Nilanka15

          Agreed. Use the rest of the season to see what we have in Ross. Not necessarily to “showcase” him, but more so as a thorough assessment.

    • Chewwy

      I thought the same thing. I agree with your comments regarding Fields lack of anything but certainly would not want to see him start

  • Tanks-a-lot

    Julyan Millstone really killed the team. Buycks should have played as the PG first off the bench.

    In any case, this team is a showcase of players rather than a team that needs to do well. Wins are accidental.

    • Chewwy

      I thought the game fell apart when Stone was in at the point guard position. He is terrible. I wonder if his 1 good game against the Lakers was the reason for him not being released instead of DJ.

      • Tanks-a-lot

        It just wasn’t the right situation for him.

  • StabbyRaccoon

    Ross looked damn good in the first quarter but didn’t have the experience to keep it up. He’s certainly not the long term solution to the small forward problem but giving him these minutes is good for him. We know that he has the potential to be a valuable player.

    Seriously hoping that Greivis Vasquez arrives soon and comes to play.

    • Roarque

      I wonder if Ross is in shape to play more than 12-14 minutes, Why not let him build up his game shape stamina. Can’t do it in the gym/practicing.

      • StabbyRaccoon

        You might be right, we’ll just have to wait and see. I can’t possibly see the upcoming months with the increased playing time not helping him improve.

    • Scott

      A little early in the kids career to determine if he’s a long term solution – especially after one start, give the young guy a chance. And yes, Tall Calderon should be entertaining.

      • Chewwy

        At least Rudy Gay was still alive in Ross with the constant turnovers on getting stripped while driving. Brutal ball protection and that spinning out of control pass that went for a turnover was a joke. I’m hoping we get rid of him and maybe get something decent back. Still can’t believe Colangelo took this guy at number 8 in the draft.

        • StabbyRaccoon

          I’m hoping that he’ll step up and take his game to the next level this season. And then if he doesn’t I’m hoping for what you’re hoping, but in a sad kind of way because he’s a likeable player, the slam dunk champ and can be very exciting, though that’s not worth much if he doesn’t develop the core of his game.

          Give it time, this year is nothing but time to improve.

      • StabbyRaccoon

        It’s possible, maybe he will become a great small forward in time, or even improve a lot in the following months. It’s all about next year and considering his improvements since last year and the new responsibility I’m confident in him. But if I was Masai I wouldn’t count on him being a quality power forward by next year.

  • Andrey

    I guess RR is tanking too. Hey I don’t blame you.

    • DDayLewis

      How are we tanking? What’s wrong with this quick react?

      • Andrey

        wish I could delete comments on this thing. Sometimes I rush and type things without thinking it through. I thought there was more positive from this game. But quick reaction sounded too depressing that’s what I meant by tanking. But then I re-read it and i was like yeah it was fine. Apologies

        • Nilanka15

          If you create a Disqus profile, you can edit comments.

          • Andrey

            Solid. Thanks

  • FREEJV

    ACC was so dead tonight even though i saw a lot of fans there i almost fell asleep watching the game.

    • vino

      Lady in front of me fell asleep… seriously though – ACC only comes to life when they hand out free T-shirts. Shame, really…

      p.s.
      time to start grading based on contribution to a LOSS. tank is on!

    • arsenalist

      I was there. It was better than most nights. They need to give away t-shirts every 20 minutes to keep things going, but yeah, better than most nights.

  • Tanks-a-lot
  • leftovercrack

    Going with Daye and Novak as our bigs? Stone on the court. Wow did we have some epically bad lineups today. And WTF is with Novak? A one-trick pony who shoots 3s, but in 28 minutes of play he has a grand total of 6 points. What exact purpose does he serve?

    • leftovercrack

      It is terrifying watching this team when Lowry is on the bench. For an instant and complete tank MU would just have to trade Lowry

      • Chewwy

        It is awful. Vasquez will be a nice addition so at least we will have two solid point guards. Casey still has to be fired as he left in that bad lineup way too long to start the second quarter

        • leftovercrack

          Casey is costing this team big time with his bad coaching, but who is going to be willing to take over a coaching gig mid-tank? Maybe MU plans to wait until the offseason when he can tell prospective coaching candidates: whew! there we did our tank, now we have a few good young players and a future. But accepting the Raptors’ gig now seems pure masochism

          • 2damkule

            Casey is costing this team big time with his bad coaching

            that’s kinda/sorta EXACTLY the point.

      • rtzyyz

        Lowry should fetch a nice return, his value is high now.

  • Roarque

    Remember how quickly Rudy was in the starting line-up after his trade from Memphis? It seemed like he played in the very next Raptor game after the announcement. So, where are the new dudes? Coulda used Hayes for 20 minutes with Tyler limping. Coulda used Vasquez for 12-14. I heard somebody (Grange?) suggest they could almost put the Kings out as a unit – add in DDR or Landry and you’ve got a ten minute team.

    • Puzzles

      Well, the trade was finalized yesterday and guys have physicals and other trade/move things + the flight + work visas. But woulda been nice to have them.

    • Ian Reynolds

      Koreen said that Patterson, Hayes, and Salmons are having their physicals in the morning, and Vazquez is dealing with his Visa.

      • beaverboi

        Dealing with his Visa? Really? How much does the guy make and he’s not let out of the country because he owes some money? Is he the next Mike Tyson?

        • Nilanka15

          He needs a work visa to play for the Raptors.

          • beaverboi

            I know. I guess the sarcasm didn’t come across. Maybe I should have made a mastercard comment?

            • Nilanka15

              lol, my bad.

        • Ian Reynolds

          I don’t really know how they work specifically, but I know that in sports tons of times when guys get traded between american and canadian squads they need to get new visas. I assume it’s because they’re based in one country, work-wise, but need to be based in the other? I don’t know why there are different time frames for different guys.

    • DanH

      No rush with the tank chugging along.

  • Puzzles

    1st Quarter: Yeah! Raptors!!! Ball movement!!!! JV and Amir puttin in work!
    2nd Quarter: lol. Stone. lol. Who is that guy? Oh yeah…Daye…
    Halftime: Fell asleep due to serious food coma
    5 mintues into 3rd: oh cool Raps down by 10.
    Halfway through 4Q: I see..Canadian basketball and Corey Joseph + Bonner’s citizenship
    Then the sudden realization that I’m a university student and have 5 exams in 4 days next week.

    Game was agonizing to watch as a Raptors fan, but as a basketball-nut, the game was so good to watch, as Pop’s group just played amazing ball.

  • hateslosing

    Amir with his fourth big scoring game in a row. If he can keep up this level of efficiency as the season wears on he’s going to become a pretty attractive trade asset. A high energy 4 who plays defense, scores efficiently, and doesn’t mind coming off the bench? Sounds like the sixth man a lot of contenders want. He’s even on a pretty affordable deal compared to a lot of guys with similar skill levels.

    Nice to see Derozan trying to create for his teammates more. I’ll take no rebounds if he’s racking up assists and free throws like this. Shot selection still needs work, but a lot of it may be the ridiculously high level of D the Spurs play.

    I’m fine with Jonas not taking a lot of shots. The kid needs to work on his defense, I could care less if he develops one iota on offense for the rest of the year. He is big and long; he’s got good lateral quicks for a big; and he seems to be a fairly smart player. He can be a defensive force and Casey, despite being inept as a coach in many ways, is actually someone who might be able to teach him how to defend properly. Casey has worked with guys like Tyson Chandler and Garnett, he must be able to give some of that defensive knowledge to Jonas. JV shouldn’t force his game on the offensive end, he should come down the floor set some screens and take the shot if he’s in good position. All his practice time should be spent watching film, doing hedging and post defense drills, and boxing out.

    • consmap

      I agree. It sometimes feel like JV takes it easy on the defensive end, while going hard on the offensive. He’s gotta reverse that mentality; offense should FLOW.

    • Tanks-a-lot

      Hayes will do some teaching. He’s one of the best defenders of the post in the league.

  • SR

    The bigs sure enjoy playing without Gay, but they still go away from JV too much after the first quarter. The guy makes plenty of mistakes and has lots to learn, but he has to be involved consistently.

    Lowry was fine – “brutal shooting from the field”? One more made FG and he would have been at 50%. 11/7/7 and he actually looked for the bigs on the p’n’r. B- seems about right.

    If the Raps would have had any shot at this game, the lack of depth killed it.

  • FREEJV

    when we get all the guys here this should be our rotation:
    STARTERS: Lowry Derozan Ross/Salmons Amir JV
    2nd unit: Vazquez ross/salmons novak patterson hansbrough

    • FREEJV

      Sorry Fields you dont make the rotation cuz you re just brutal

      • Tanks-a-lot

        I don’t get how people can forgive that guy for missing LAY UPS

        he’s horrible at finishing.

  • Chewwy

    For a guy that has been touted as a great defensive coach, the Raptors look brutal. They don’t cover the 3 well and are brutal switching in the pick and roll. The inbound plays by us are non existent with zero movement. Bottom line, MU’s next move has to be to get rid of Casey

    • rtzyyz

      100% agree.
      For a defense minded coach, we suck at defense. Just the fact that we could give up a 27 point lead in 1 quarter against golden state seals the deal for me. This guy is out of his element.

  • Brendan

    As much as I like Amir, DD, Lowry, I’m excited to see what pieces we could get for them. Realistically they’ll be heading to contenders and at best late first round picks or mid-level young players but they played a great spurs team and i thought they all played admirably. With a good system and strong team around them all three of these guys can flourish. Hopefully their strong play can speed up the rebuild with some good assets acquired by the Massiah because this dude just keeps turning pennies into gold!

    Ps. The bench is just atrocious and so is Casey.Novak playing 28 minutes I know it’s a short bench but come on

    • FREEJV

      lol would you rather have austin daye whos even worse and cant even shoot?

    • rtzyyz

      ummm…aren’t Demar, Kyle and Amir mid-level young talent??? how much younger can they get, and do you think at their price range you can find better players???

      You are right, those three are support cast players not stars. So bring in some high level talent and they can be the supports. don’t substitute support cast for a different support cast. I don’t get that.

      • Brendan

        No I get we need high level talent, but I doubt that kind of talent can be brought in through a trade by those 3. But bringing in young but controllable pieces that might contribute and hopefully late firsts will be able to build a new team with the inevitable lottery pick the raps will have. If Masai could convince a team like the bulls to take Lowry for a first, considering how putrid the east is that be a mid 20s pick, won’t get elite talent but still maximize value of a supporting cast player

  • rtzyyz

    I was going to do my usual rant on how Casey blows and how he has to go but I am honestly tired of doing that.
    Lowry is playing his best ball as a raptor and possibly his career. He was looking for JV and Amir, Masai needs to trade him soon while his value is high.
    Speaking of trades, I can see a lot of teams calling about Amir, and I think he can bring in a nice return as he plays hard, efficient, doesn’t mind coming off the bench. You know what you get with Amir. Sadly though, I hope he stays. The guy loves Toronto, and we love him. I trust Masai will do the right things but I really hope that Amir staying in toronto is part of the master plan.

  • rtzyyz

    the post game TANK GRADES
    Amir—F
    Played way to hard, was way to efficient. Hustled and looked like he cared. Did not help the tank at all.
    JV—C
    Started off way to strong, was scoring on every possession, was not helping the tank. Nice to see some development for the future though. Managed to disappear after the first quarter so the tank is happy.
    Demar- C,
    went 6-16 from the field but was 100% from the foul line. playing with way to much confidence for the tank but managed to grab no rebounds, great job. Dished out 7 assists, which shows he is opening his eyes. Bad for the tank but great for my fantasy team.
    Kyle- C
    Played way to hard, when he was on the court the team looked like it had a general and that it could actually play. Only reason he gets a C and not F is because it raises his trade value.
    Ross- C
    Played well in the first and looked like there is an improvement, good for the future. Managed to disappear the rest of the game. good job.
    Daye- A+
    Forgot he was on this team. C’mon Casey, if we are going to tank you gotta play this guy more.
    Buyks- A+
    Looked dazed and confused. Perfect combination. More minutes for this guy.
    Novak- A
    28 minutes, 4 shots, no defense, useless rebounds…awesome, you can be the captain of the tank. We are playing 4 on 5 with this guy out there. Excellent work.
    Landry- A
    you suck, great work. end of story
    Stone C
    Didn’t help the tank, but didn’t hurt it either. lets put him out there more to see what he can do.
    Casey-A+
    Through out some weird line ups. Let Novak play 28 minutes. Reminded the players to stop passing the ball to JV in the post. Has no offensive plays, our defense looks like swiss cheese. Great work as usual!!!

    • David>S

      Rtzyzz – hope you keep this up every game -funny as hell!!

  • Macc

    Quite harsh giving Buycks an F. I mean most of the players he put the numbers on were equal or superior competition so that has to count for something. 3 steals as well. But I appreciate the humour.

  • ahoang

    where do i get a tony parker burger?!

  • morgan c

    JV should not be untouchable. That is not the same as saying the we should look to move him – not at all. But if a team offers us something that blows us away, like a top-10 protected pick AND a good player, then hell yeah.

    At the same time, I worry that keeping Casey around could be ruining JV long-term. Is keeping him to help the tank worth possibly ruining our best player? I don’t think so.

    Can Casey now / change philosophy to force-feed Jonas. That way, he gets development, and we still lose. Win-win.