|Amir Johnson, PF Shot Chart 32 MIN | 3-5 FG | 0-0 FT | 5 REB | 1 AST | 0 STL | 2 BLK | 2 TO | 6 PTS | +4Played hard-nosed defense against the formidable Pacers front-line. Didn’t put up big numbers but he didn’t have to.|
|Jonas Valanciunas, C Shot Chart 31 MIN | 5-10 FG | 3-4 FT | 9 REB | 2 AST | 1 STL | 1 BLK | 1 TO | 13 PTS | +12Went toe-to-toe with Roy Hibbert on both ends of the floor. Got schooled a bit early on, but he got Hibbert to rack up fouls (he eventually fouled him out). Showed some poise in the paint. He was huge.|
|Kyle Lowry, PG Shot Chart 34 MIN | 4-9 FG | 4-4 FT | 4 REB | 14 AST | 2 STL | 1 BLK | 1 TO | 13 PTS | +19This dude is going to get paaaaid this offseason. Look at those assist numbers. He did a great job facilitating, getting the ball into the right hands at the right time. Also drew two key charges, including one on Hibbert that resulted in him fouling out. Amazing.|
|DeMar DeRozan, SG Shot Chart 39 MIN | 9-24 FG | 8-9 FT | 9 REB | 3 AST | 3 STL | 0 BLK | 3 TO | 26 PTS | +11Demar did his best Rudy Gay impression. He was crap through 3 quarters, missing makeable shots and settling for jumpers, but he hit some huge buckets in the fourth to help the Raptors pull away. Shooting percentage looks ugly, but don’t hold it against him tonight. He’s exhausted and he was guarded by George.|
|Terrence Ross, SG Shot Chart 38 MIN | 6-12 FG | 4-4 FT | 4 REB | 2 AST | 3 STL | 0 BLK | 3 TO | 18 PTS | +8He’s playing the best ball of his career right now. He’s so confident in that jumper of his. He also did a beautiful job covering Paul George tonight, limiting the budding superstar to 5-14 shooting and 6 TO. Why isn’t there an A plus-plus?|
|Tyler Hansbrough, PF Shot Chart 16 MIN | 2-2 FG | 1-2 FT | 6 REB | 0 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 2 TO | 5 PTS | +3Rebounds, hustles, misses chippies at the rim, gets his own chippies at the rim, gets fouled, hits some of his FT, stomps around angrily, picks up a tech, draws a tech, fires up the crowd. Embrace him – he is your Toronto Raptors personified.|
|Patrick Patterson, PF Shot Chart 16 MIN | 1-4 FG | 0-0 FT | 2 REB | 1 AST | 2 STL | 0 BLK | 2 TO | 3 PTS | +7Missed the shots he was supposed to make but he generally played some solid defense. Held the Pacers in check along with Hansbrough which allowed JV and Amir to stay fresh.|
|John Salmons, SF Shot Chart 19 MIN | 2-6 FG | 0-0 FT | 0 REB | 2 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 2 TO | 5 PTS | +7Ehh, I don’t know what to say. Played some good defense at times but he has ugly ISO-ball tendencies. Didn’t hit his shots tonight, but he will keep taking them in the next game. Ross took his minutes tonight.|
|Greivis Vasquez, PG Shot Chart 14 MIN | 2-6 FG | 0-0 FT | 0 REB | 2 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 6 PTS | -6Whatever he gives you on offense, he gives back on defense.|
Is he turning the corner? He ran a couple of very nice plays tonight. Pin-downs for Ross for spot-up jumpers? More of that, please. Also called some timely TO’s tonight. I’m at a loss for words
Five Things We Saw
- I said it earlier, but I have have to say it again: Jonas Valanciunas went toe-to-toe with Roy Hibbert tonight. Hibbert is arguably the best center in the NBA. He exercised the “principle of verticality” and challenged many shots at the rim. So much potential!
- The Pacers came out of halftime with a mind to kill, but the Raptors simply wouldn’t go away. Casey called a quick timeout after the Pacers went on a run and righted the ship. Every time the Pacers looked like they were about to pull away, the Raptors would have an answer – a Ross three, a JV in the paint. They fought tooth and nail with the Pacers and outlasted them.
- Ballsy move by Casey to keep Lowry on the bench until 4:30 left in the game. Vasquez was slow as molasses and Indiana was able to exploit his lack of quickness. Could have gone bad but Lowry looked fresh when he re-entered.
- Demar was so clutch tonight. It wasn’t the most optimal shot selection (a smattering of long-twos), but he hit them so what can you say? He scored 10 points in the fourth and buried the Pacers. Maybe he can close games for the Jays this summer?
- My game notes for tonight’s game
- So, Is Casey a Good Coach or a Bad Coach?
- Morning Coffee: Jan. 2nd Edition