Detroit Pistons 91 Final
Recap | Box Score
112 Toronto Raptors
Amir Johnson, PF Shot Chart 33 MIN | 4-13 FG | 2-2 FT | 11 REB | 1 AST | 1 STL | 4 BLK | 3 TO | 10 PTS | +12

0-7 in the 1st half, 4-6 in 2nd. Awesome team defense with tight rotations that ended with him blocking four shots at the rm. Standard night other than the fact that he needs to realize that that three he took in the 1st, in transition, and early in the shot clock, is not acceptable. It was funny earlier in the season, but we deserve better.

Jonas Valanciunas, C Shot Chart 26 MIN | 7-9 FG | 2-2 FT | 11 REB | 2 AST | 0 STL | 2 BLK | 2 TO | 16 PTS | +7

The only reason I can’t give him an A+ is because his passivity (?) netted Hayes 14+ minutes, at least 7 of which should have been his. The Detroit bigs are defensively challenged, and he took advantage with vicious pump-fake after vicious pump-fake to help give the Raptors a spark in the 3rd and erase the memory of that awful 2nd quarter. That was a horrible 12 minutes of Raptors basketball.

Kyle Lowry, PG Shot Chart 34 MIN | 4-9 FG | 9-9 FT | 5 REB | 9 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 21 PTS | +17

It wasn’t that he shot poorly from the field, because he didn’t, it’s that he started the game shooting poorly from the field, and recovered by taking better shots and hitting key threes every-time the Raptors needed one. An assist short of a 20/10 night while going 9 for 9 from the line is starting to feel like just another day at the office for this guy. Along with drafting Jonas, KLOE has proven to be one of Colangelo’s best decisions.

DeMar DeRozan, SG Shot Chart 36 MIN | 3-15 FG | 13-16 FT | 6 REB | 4 AST | 2 STL | 2 BLK | 3 TO | 19 PTS | +14

The jumper wasn’t there, but every-time he put it on the floor, very good things happened: layups or freethrows (13-16). Also of note: he moved very well off the ball, crashed the boards, moved the ball around, played fairly good man defense, solid help defense, and yea…he wasn’t terribly exciting but these kinds of games go a long way in cementing his leadership on this team, and raising his profile around the league. Needs to work on his inefficient offense, but if he can get to the line like he did tonight, I’m sure we can all live it.

Terrence Ross, SG Shot Chart 29 MIN | 6-13 FG | 0-0 FT | 3 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 17 PTS | +19

I’m going to be a little hard on Ross because other than his catch-and-shooting, solid by the way, he did very little until the 4th where he snagged a couple rebounds. Does a great job of spreading the floor and giving Amir/Jonas room to operate in the paint, but the defense made me shake my head a few times more than he should have (there was one play where Pope pump-faked him from 30ft, got him off the ground, and strolled by him at three-quarters speed for a layup). Might be over-analyzing, probably am, but it seems he’s moving away form using his athleticism and into the direction of shooting more. Vince did that, and none of us needs to see that.

Patrick Patterson, PF Shot Chart 18 MIN | 3-5 FG | 2-2 FT | 3 REB | 4 AST | 0 STL | 1 BLK | 0 TO | 8 PTS | +15

Surprisingly, it was his defense and playmaking that made the difference, and not his offense (which he did a great job of keeping his defender honest with shooting, dribble-driving and posting up). I want to linger on his defense (probably the first time that was said about him)…isn’t he an excellent compliment to Amir in the front court? Had Amir’s back every-time Amir rotated into the paint as the stopper; made solid rotations himself, and kept his man (usually Drummond) well in check when he saw the floor.

Chuck Hayes, PF Shot Chart 17 MIN | 2-4 FG | 1-1 FT | 7 REB | 1 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 5 PTS | +6

I’m just not a fan. Yes he played within himself and didn’t do anything crazy, boxed out, showed some feel around the rim, snagged a couple boards, but it feels as though his minutes come at the expense of Jonas’, which is unacceptable.

John Salmons, SF Shot Chart 23 MIN | 2-8 FG | 2-2 FT | 2 REB | 1 AST | 0 STL | 1 BLK | 2 TO | 7 PTS | +9

I have to plead for mercy because he did nothing memorable from my perspective to the point where I didn’t even write his name down once in my game notes. Was involved in a lot of the pass before the pass, and hit a three, but at this point I’ll just be trying to divine something from the boxscore and choose to save us all that pain.

Landry Fields, SF Shot Chart 1 MIN | 1-1 FG | 0-0 FT | 0 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 2 PTS | +2

Got a basket. In other news, he will be paid in the vicinity of $8mil next year.

Steve Novak, SF Shot Chart 1 MIN | 0-1 FG | 0-0 FT | 1 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 0 PTS | +2

Got a rebound, lol

Greivis Vasquez, PG Shot Chart 20 MIN | 3-8 FG | 0-0 FT | 6 REB | 3 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 7 PTS | 0

I’ll be surprised if he is back next season. Brutal defender, and sketchy shooter. That said, and I mean this, he has shown more upside in his first two years than Jose did, which is something to look forward too I guess…it’s just that it’s painful watching him go through the defensive motions for nothing; at least he isn’t a happy clapper…

Julyan Stone, SG Shot Chart 2 MIN | 0-0 FG | 0-0 FT | 0 REB | 0 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 0 PTS | +2


Austin Daye, SF Shot Chart DNP COACH’S DECISION MIN | FG | FT | REB | AST | STL | BLK | TO | PTS |


Dwane Casey

That 1st half wasn’t his fault, but to his credit he did his best to minimize the fallout from some very ugly basketball played (by both teams for that matter). Not sure what he did at half-time, but this was a very different team when the 3rd quarter kicked off. Other than playing Hayes far too many minutes, did a solid job of calling plays, having the right guys on the floor, and calling timeouts (I’m very sensitive to timely timeouts).

Five Things We Saw

  1. That 1st half was marred with poor defense (Pistons had 45 points in the paint and another 25 on the fast break), but it was the Raptors sloppy offense that did them in, especially in the 2nd quarter where they went 6-23 from the field, including a 5+ minute stretch where they didn’t hit a field goal, allowing he Pistons to go on a 14-0 run. That was as close the Pistons would come, since they suck and the Raptors don’t.

    While that 2nd quarter was brutal, the bench bought the starters about 2.5 minutes more than they had any right to, helping save their legs for the 2nd half where they came out looking like a different team; pounding the Pistons until they rolled over, which bled into the 4th quarter where they started on a 17-6 run at which point I lost interest and started pounding a bag of Cheetos.

  2. An observation about Amir and Jonas, not always, but enough that I noticed: they relied more on their size rather than positioning and boxing-out on the glass than they probably should. Munroe and Drummond combined for 27 boards (7 offensive) tonight; that’s too much. If Hayes does nothing else with the year and a half, and $10mil left on his contract, than teach Amir and Jonas how to box out with that doughboy frame of his, I will be a happy camper.
  3. Felt like we saw two Raptors teams tonight: the 1st half team that played a lot of iso/hero-ball, putting up bricks early in the shot clock and generally taking poor shots (pre-Gay-trade); and the 2nd half team that moved the ball around, took good shots, defended well, looked like they enjoy playing basketball (post-Gay-trade Raptors). The amazing thing is that Casey was able to steer the apathetic team into the engaged one.
  4. The bench was huge: 29 points 19 rebounds 9 assists a block and two steals.
  5. Raptors showed a lot of heart pulling this one out. Even when they were playing poorly, you knew they were going to win. It ended up a standard blowout, and a well deserved one after the challenging week. With 5 of the next 6 games coming against sub .500 teams, the Raptors have a real chance to grab 3rd place from the Hawks.

  • Adriiian

    Mmmm. Pizza tastes good.
    Lets go RAPS!

    Vasquez is really bad tho.

  • Brian L

    I finally got to saw the infamous Chuck Hayes free throw at the Air Canada Centre, and he made it 1 for 1 (not before Hayes tricking Drummond into a lane violation) !!! I can die happy now!

  • Keepup

    Ho-hum. A pedestrian 20-point blow-out. Is Ujiri working on Lowry’s extension?

    • Robert Wright

      It’s more than that – two weeks ago, we were the Pistons equal. We handily beat an inferior opponent.
      I was worried about this game – and needed a blowout to reassure me that last stretch wasn’t an illusion.
      This team isn’t quite there yet, but we’ve turned a corner. We

    • raptorstand

      I felt pretty good about this game. This is how good teams win. This is what other teams have been doing to us for 5 years now. We could play with a good team for a half and that was it . Then I come to read the summary and its nothing but negative. Chuck Hayes had a great game , that’s a huge front court and he gave us solid minutes. Vas is learning a new role , everybody give him time. T. Ross gave us a lot tonight , pat on the back would be nice. Patterson has been playing massive d since he has got here , I don’t know what Patterson this guy has been watching, I got a feeling this writer is a closet tanker , that thinks winning is bad.

    • robertparrish00

      I’ve been a Raps fan too long to think any 20 pt win is ever pedestrian.

    • leftovercrack

      Another player I wouldn’t mind seeing extended if it could be done is Patrick Patterson. He is still only 24 years old, has some size and I like his game

      • Keepup

        I agree. If they can get him on a value contract I like his game off the bench. He works very well in the Raptors offense with lots of ball movement because he can spread the floor from the front-court with his shooting.

        • leftovercrack

          So many good teams have taken the Raptors’ discards and seen them become good players, it is about time Toronto does the same to a sad-sack franchise like Sacramento

  • mountio

    Was at this one. Interesting game … almost seemed like Detriot`s perimeter D being so bad worked against us at the start. We would get a slightly open 3 which would have been a good shot vs the Miami or Indiana teams we have been playing, but which was a relatively poor shot vs this horrible defensive team at the perimieter. As a result, we took some quick shots and ball movement wasnt great. We figured it out and started taking our time, but it took a while.
    I hear the crticism of T Ross – but I am convinced the biggest reason (maybe 2nd behind KL playing out of his mind) why this team has turned the corner is having a legitimate threat from 3. Maybe hes only doing the catch and shoot thing … but that thing makes a massive massive difference.

    • Lawrence C

      I totally agree about Ross. He has gone from invisible many nights to having figured out a way to become a real asset to this starting lineup.. His athleticism is nice, but we also have Demar for that and what this 5 man group really needed was another deep threat. I have been very impressed with how he’s tailored his game to what his team needs. Rapidly improving defense too.

      • leftovercrack

        Liking Ross’ development. It would be good to have a Jason Kapono who wasn’t an athletic stiff. Ross is still is streaky with his shooting, but that is too be expected at this stage of his career

        • Lawrence C

          It’s true. He still takes a few bad shots each game, and I only REALLY trust his 3-ball when it’s coming from the corner, but he’s showing more than enough progress to be patient while he figures it all out.

        • raptorstand

          If Ross doesn’t have 2 dunks a game , he is not doing all he can for this team.

      • Phat AlberG

        I don’t think he’s gone invisible he’s shooting 50% from 3 over the winning streak and average 14 game since inserted as started, and also plays lock down D. The guy is definitely the reason why Raps have turn it around.

        • Dr. Scooby

          Ya man, his defense rattles players.

        • Lawrence C

          I think you obviously misread or misunderstood my comment.

    • tonious35

      TRoss is shooting 3s, not chucking 3s like last year. Set plays with feet planted and ready to shoot from screens that are not half-assed by non-Bargnani people. Then his defense is all up to him, and so far he is executing as much as he can, up to him in the future to keep reading scouting reports.

      • mountio

        True .. although the chucking was mostly a function of casey not giving him any playing time and so he was forced to throw up whatever he could. Often the threes were, as you note, step backs and ridiculous shots that not even the best shooter in the league would hit.
        Confidence playing time and the right role .. and hes thriving. Too bad it took casey this long to figure out what seemed fairly obvious to me, at least

    • EmarErozan

      Love the Ross/Vince Comparison. I Kevin Love it!

      • afrocarter

        +1 for the pun

    • mountio

      As a follow up to this – does anyone on here have (or know where I can find) 3pters attempted and made per game pre and post Gay trade? I would assume the numbers are dramatically up in both categories. There is obviously a lot more to it but I would think this stat alone would be very telling. You cant win in today;s NBA without effective 3pt shooting.

  • tonious35

    Now we know why this Detroit team is so disappointing. Besides Joe Dum-(ass)-ars signing & trading more bad pieces, the talents of the team do not know the scouting reports of the teams they are against and within themselves (J-Smoove chucking/not doing intangible things, Jennings chucking/not driving to the bucket with all his might, Drummond being pumped faked the HELL-OUT by JV). The Raps just smartened up in the 2nd half and let Detroit beat themselves.

    • Ghotte

      Drummond: Just doesn’t seem ‘generational’ to me. Has a long future so who knows. And, he seems to be mucking up Detroit’s offence.

      The thing that seems to be holding JV back on the defensive end is he’s got to be way, way better positionally.

  • afrocarter

    I think the only reason Hayes played almost 20 minutes was that the Raps played a tough, physical game yesterday. He’s a positive when he’s on the floor, and provides “steadiness”; when a big begins to waver in his play, just insert Hayes for a few minutes to steady things out. He’s a good safety net — for now at least, until Psycho T returns.

    • Al Asifyouknow

      The bench had about 20 rebounts …that is amazing…

    • tonious35

      I don’t mind keeping him as an emergency backup for now and teaching the young Big-Men:

  • asifyouknow

    I had no idea that Detroit was this bad…..They should of a 20 point lead on Toronto by the first half…Torontyo needs at least 3 of the next five..

    • leftovercrack

      It seems to be a poorly structured, dysfunctional team. It’s as if Joe Dumar built that championship team then was replaced by the pod of Rob Babcock.

      • Roarque

        Do you think it’s one guy? Or an organization? And where does luck come into play?

    • MalcomX

      Four of the next five has a nicer ring to it, don’t you think?

  • Al Asifyouknow

    Love this post lots of coaches here….I will learn me something here…lol

  • Statement

    Prior to this game, the Raptors had played the 3rd hardest schedule in the entire league in terms of opponent winning % (note:!!!). Despite that, they had a positive point and efficiency differential and a pythagorean record of 18-15 (not the 16-17 record before todays game). All of this stuff indicates that the Raptors should their remaining schedule, assuming continued health. Of course, I’m a Raptors fan, so I’ll believe it when I see it, but the math lines up in their favour.

    • Statement

      *should decimate their remaining schedule

    • Keepup

      Hollinger has them with a projected 50 wins – 8th in the NBA. The Hollinger playoff odds are 100%. I wonder if a .500 team ever had 100% playoff odds 34 games into the season. It shows how good the Raptors have become lately based on point margin, strength of competition, etc. It also shows how terrible the East is this year.

      • Statement

        Good Lord, 8th in the NBA. Unreal.

      • CJT

        Hasn’t a .500 record been a lock for a playoff spot in the East for a decade or so?

        • Keepup

          Not 34 games into the season.

      • TheR3dMenace

        50 wins would be a franchise record. That’s amazing if they can pull it off

  • AB4EYE

    Good thing they can’t shoot FT and have an unbelievably bad bench because we needed this one bad with the Nets beating Golden State and the Hawks beating the Pacers on top of a Wizards win.

    One thing is for sure and that’s if we trade Kyle or he gets hurt this team is going to become bad quick. If we make the playoffs with a winning record he should get some serious MVP love.

    • Lawrence C

      I love Lowry as much as anyone at this point but LET’S NOT GO CRAZY HERE.

      • AB4EYE

        This team is getting a Top-5 pick without Kyle

        • raptorstand

          If I here the word elite one more time im gonna puke.

    • DDayLewis

      Lebron, Durant, or Lowry for MVP?


      • AB4EYE

        Each of those guys and all other MVP candidates have other elite player on their team, without Kyle we suck! He isn’t going to win but he should be get plenty of votes.

        • DDayLewis

          Lowry might get some 5th place consideration but given the fact that Lebron, Durant, Love, Curry and CP3 all produce significantly more than him, there’s no way Lowry should be on anyone’s ballot.

          • AB4EYE

            Well if that’s the case then he will get exactly what I said he would get.

          • mountio

            PG will be in the conversation for sure

      • Roarque

        Lowry for most motivated – is that another title for most improved?

    • webfeat

      I think the raps would have to finish finish 1st or 2nd in the east for Lowry to get many MVP votes.

  • vZT F1

    i think that after Vasquez gets use too his new role, he will start playing as well as he was his first few games here. cut the guy some slack.

    • Tee

      Hes good once he gets playing time.

      Very similar passing like jose.
      NBA fans know this from his days in New Orleans .

      He will get his chance to start with 50 games left. We will see,

      • Will

        Wait, you think he’s going to get some starts? The only way he starts is if Lowry gets traded or injured.

        • Tee

          Dude if Lowry plays the next 48 games ill be impressed. (and grateful)

          Im talking like 5 starts by the end of the season.
          Can anyone name me some better backup pgs in the NBA?-(Maybe Houston, the Cippers, OKC)
          He’s actually perfect for that role. Very similar to Jose.

          • Will

            First of all, barring injury or trade, why wouldn’t Lowry start every remaining game? He’s the clear starter. You don’t just give starts to the bench guy every now and then. It’s not like he’s old and needs nights off.

            Secondly, I’m fine with him as our backup point playing 12 – 15 minutes a night. I just hope he embraces that role.

            • Tee

              Bro I agree.
              I was talking about a start due to injury.(which is possible; knock on wood)
              Lowry usually plays about 70 games a season-if hes lucky.

              Everyone in the NBA gets their chance to shine.

          • slim

            In a backup pg discussion, I would only consider trading him for mate Robbie, Lin, barea, mo Williams, r Jackson and that’s it. Plus most of them are scorers – bad is best passer

        • database_666

          if we could trade Vasquez and another player to get G. Dragic out from Suns, we would turn into a scary team and fully complemented at the PG position.

    • Will

      I don’t know if he will get used to it. He tasted starters minutes for a whole year in New Orleans and finishing second in assists that year probably made him think he’s better than he is. Even in Sacramento, he started when Thomas was clearly better. I just hope he doesn’t get a negative attitude about it.

    • Tanks-a-lot

      He’s greasy
      That’s final

  • monocled_gentleman_scholar

    I found the phrase “vicious pump-fake” very funny.

    • Sam

      He sold each and every one he made. Also, where the eff is the monocle in your avatar???

      • monocled_gentleman_scholar

        It’s in my eye – where else would it be?

        • Sam

          My bad; was looking on my phone and thought the guy was making a douchy Salvador Dali face rather than keep the monocle in place face

  • Bendit

    2Pat is a bit of a revelation. Plays the game well, responsibly and a good team mate. He is a keeper for the team going forward.

  • JayTeam

    Sam, Jonas had 5 fouls in his 26 minutes. Not quite sure why you think the refs would have let him play the 7 more minutes Hayes supposedly stole.

    • Sam

      He only had 2 in the 1st half when Hayes played 10 minutes, and didn’t pick up his fifth until well into the 4th quarter with the game out of hand.

      • JayTeam

        Maybe he only had 2 in the 1st half because Hayes played the 10 minutes. I think Keepup’s hacking comment seems to have validity.

    • Keepup

      Maybe Casey was planning for his “Hack-a-Drum” tactic and wanted to preserve JV’s fouls until the second half.

    • monocled_gentleman_scholar

      I didn’t watch tonight’s game, but in the previous three or four games I could see why Casey is inclined to sit JV for stretches. The guy sometimes makes boneheaded mistakes that just drive me up the wall: not boxing out, showing the ball and getting his pocket picked, not securing the rebound. Ugh, so ugly sometimes.

      • raptorstand

        If you would have watched the game tonight maybe you would give the 21 YEAR OLD !!! a break. He was outstanding , the best player on the floor, massive dunks , show and gos , solid interior d , just another game of his progression.

  • Pong

    I can’t believe Drummond got pump faked twice. JV does that every possession and he rarely shoots it anymore.

  • jonazzing

    had a buddy in sacramento say right at the trade we d love patterson and that their fan base hated salmons. kinda seems that way. he also did not want rudy haha

  • rtzyyz

    Ross has a sweet stroke. I’d like to see him in the 3 point shootout at the all star weekend. Has anyone ever won slam dunk and 3 point in consecutive years?

  • MalcomX

    The Raptor bench should be called the Kings, They play with more pride as the Kings because (a) they’ve spent more time together, (b) they have pride as professionals or (c) they’re pissed at being ignored. Funny how everyone is noting the subtraction of Rudy and not the addition of the Kings as the pivot point to the raptors resurgence.

    • Tanks-a-lot

      We do note it, don’t you worry about that.

      Figuring out who is useful and worthy of praise is another matter that time will take care of.

      • MalcomX

        When you do be sure to compare them with Aaron Gray, Quincy Acy, Landry Fields and Dwight Buycks. All great guys in the room but a second late on the ball – not aggressive enough – hunger is good on a bench.

        • Tanks-a-lot

          I want Buycks to be a really good backup PG

  • Age

    Finally Casey pulled out his starters at 2mins left. Probably should have been done a few plays earlier, but at least he did it. We need to reign in some of the minutes these guys are logging right now on nights we are dominating. We need to think with a longer-term view (i.e. playoffs) now, not just getting to .500 anymore

    ps – Nets won again vs GS and keeping things interesting. Luckily for Raps, those old farts will be playing Miami the day before we play them on Saturday.

    • ckh26

      and they suck.. relying on andre blatche and two canisters of geritol for pierce and garnett. I ‘d worry more about space debris hitting your head than the nets this year.

  • Cameron Becker

    What a surprise, Sam Halako marking down Ross and criticizing every single mistake he made.

    Good win Raptors, JV was great!

  • tweed8

    Was at the game tonight, great win. Second half domination!

    Every time I see 2Pat -on tv or in the real- something about his game makes him seem older than his 24 years.
    This guy needs to be a Raptor for a little while.

    Derozan wasn’t hitting tonight but, his level of confidence is high and you can see it bleeding into his overall game, right down to the way he moves on the court.

    Love the way Jonas stretches out for some of those slams. Defenders sometimes just freeze with an “ah crap” look on their faces.

    Raptors are making it fun again. Keep it up.

  • Tanks-a-lot

    anyone here know the name ‘Gary Jobe’?

    just curious.

  • Dr. Scooby

    Alright, this team has won me over. Thank you Toronto Raptors.

  • webfeat

    The refs were pretty trigger happy on the foul calls. This worked greatly to the Raptors’ advantage as they are a much much better FT shooting team. The Pistons had 12 fewer made free throws (19 vs 31) than the raps despite having 1 more FTA (35 vs 34) than them.

  • Hound

    We will have Fun, Fun, Fun, till Mesai takes Lowry awayyyy.