When I’m scheduled to write one of these post-game reports, I always look for angles for the write-up. Sometimes I see things on defense or offense that I decide I want to highlight. Other times it something to do with the other team. With the Lakers, right now, I realized there was going to be very little to focus on. Like all of Mike D’Antoni’s teams, the Lakers are horrible defensively, so anything the Raptors do on offense probably won’t be of much value to study. And on defense, the Lakers just want to get out and run and shoot, so, apart from slowing them down, there probably aren’t lessons to be learned on that end, either.

So what I came up with was a running diary. I’ve never done it before, but here it goes:


– I really wish the NBA on TV would start using more advanced stats. The fact that the Raptors have held opponents to 88.4 ppg in the last five games tells me very little about a team’s defense. A team can play at a slower pace and keep opponents point down, but it doesn’t mean they’re playing good defense.

The T-Wolves, in their inaugural season, had one of the slowest paces in the game and limited their opponents to 99.4 ppg, which was good for 2nd in the league. That didn’t mean they played great defense. They were a middle of the pack defensive team, but they just slowed the games down. If television basketball analysts started using points per possession, it would mean A LOT more. I realize a lot of fans may not understand what that means, but they’ll learn. They won’t if you never do it, though.

– Kendall Marshall is averaging a double-double as a Laker. If he isn’t definitive proof that D’Antoni’s system makes point guards look better, I don’t what is. I actually liked Marshall and was hoping the Raptors would try to pick up up when Washington waived him (after the Gortat trade), but I don’t think anyone would have predicted what he’s doing now. Well, maybe Jeremy Lin 1.

1. Speaking of D’Antoni and point guards, I wonder if the fact that Steve Nash has played for Don Nelson and D’Antoni for most of his career will have a negative effect on him if he decides to coach or go into a front office after he retires. He’s never had the advantage of being in a Championship system with a coach who understands how to win with defense. I’m a huge Nash fan, but players are often a product of their environment, and Nash hasn’t had a good environment. Look at all of the successful coaches and GMs and most of them have either played for a great coach and/or played in a great system. Nash has had neither.

– The starting five for the Lakers. Marshall, Meeks, Johnson, Kelly and Gasol. I had to look up who Kelly was. That’s two cast-offs, three if you count Meeks, a second round pick rookie, and an All Star well past his prime. These are the types of the games the Raptors used to struggle with. These are also not your older brother’s Lakers.


– Matt Devlin just said, “The Lakers aren’t committed on the defensive end.” That’s like saying that a few people die in Game of Thrones.

– Amir left completely wide open for a 20 footer. Amir isn’t the best shooter, from that range, but his man didn’t even attempt to put a hand up. A good coach would yank Amir’s man. I’m guessing D’Antoni won’t.

– Valanciunas is going to have his hands full with Gasol. He’s looking good out there early. For some reason he always surprises me how big he really is.

– I have no clue who Kendall Jackson is, but from the way they’re talking, apparently I should. It sounds like a football player’s name. They meant Kendall Marshall.

– Valanciunas still holding the ball too long before he makes a post move. That’s becoming a bad habit.

– They just realized John Salmons isn’t playing. I’m not sure it’s a good sign how important Salmons is to the success of the team.

– Amir just hit another wide open jumper. Are they afraid Amir is going to take them off the dribble? Do they have any scouting reports on Amir? Oh, wait. That would be defense .

– I remember when fans would complain when Amir would take the long jumper. Take a look at the shot chart below…

Screen Shot 2014-01-19 at 12.19.48 PM

– That is this year. This is his shot chart from two years ago:

Screen Shot 2014-01-19 at 2.36.21 PM

– Amir has become a very good shooter from 15-20 feet. That skills has made him more valuable on offense, as he now has the ability to draw his man out, opening things up underneath.

– Looking at Amir’s shot chart for this year you have to really question the Lakers’ decision to give him the open 15-20 footer. He’s excellent from that range.

– Now Patterson just got a wide-open three. Starting to see a pattern, here.

– Patterson another wide open corner three. I wouldn’t stand for this many wide-open threes if I’m playing pickup ball. I’d love to see a shot of Kobe, right now.

– Lowry has become dangerous at those pull-up threes. I was going to question the Lakers’ scouting report on Lowry, again, then I remembered this is the Lakers.

– Now Vasquez gets a wide-open three. Some teams focus on running shooters off the three point line. The Lakers don’t seem to have that strategy. The Raptors shot 5-6 from three in the first quarter. I’m guessing not one Raptor shooter had a defender within five feet of him.


–  I’m going to stop mentioning the wide-open threes. I’m starting to repeat myself too much. Maybe it’s the whole Rocky Balboa from Rocky III strategy.

– Oh, my god. Did the Lakers really play enough defense to take the shot clock down? That must have been a mistake.

– I’m not a big Patterson fan, but that was a GREAT defensive play on Gasol. Especially considering Gasol is at least 3 inches taller than Patterson.

– 24-5 run by the Raptors. I might be on to something with this Rocky III strategy. Just wait for the Raptors to start getting tired from hitting so many wide-open shots and start missing them. Then the Lakers will jump.

– They just showed a graphic with Raptor team stats before and after the Rudy Gay trade. It’s pretty astounding. Grantland’s Kirk Goldsberry recently wrote and article talking about the Rudy Gay Principle that I recommend reading. Basically he’s saying that there is a threshold where players start playing above their means and start hurting their team. On the Raptors, Gay’s Usage was too high in comparison to his talent level. Every Raptor GM should read that article because that’s been a problem for most of their history 2.

2. DeMar DeRozan might be the next Raptor in a long line that the franchise has given too much responsibility to and elevated above where they should be due to circumstances. Damon Stoudemire, Jalen Rose, Mike James, Chris Bosh and Andrea Bargnani. All those guys had a Usage Percentage far higher than it should have been on a good team, and saw it go down fairly drastically on their next team. DeRozan is a decent to good player being asked to be a great one. And he’s not.

– Lakers actually playing some defense, which results in then getting back into game. Funny how that works.

– I get the feeling neither Matt or Jack have a clue what analytics really are. Jack probably just thinks it’s something to do with computers, or something. Kind of like Twitter.

– Trivia Question: Who holds Lakers record for consecutive games played. Is it just me or is this easy? It’s got to be A.C. Green, who has one of the longest runs in the history of the league. I know it’s not Steve Nash.


– Mark Cuban has apparently been fined nearly $2 million since he became owner of the Mavericks. I just don’t know what to say about that. The fact he’s also matched that with donations to charity is nice, I guess.

– They just showed Durant’s career high in scoring game, a game I recorded but haven’t finished watching, yet. I know in the first quarter, Durant had 15, Thompson had 13 and Curry had 11. I figured a big game was coming.

– Kelly Olynyk also had a career high game. They mentioned his fascia injury. As someone who is still recovering from a fascia injury that happened last June, I can completely relate.

– Now they’re talking about Canadian Tyler Ennis, on Syracuse, and how he’s having one of the best freshman seasons. Someone I follow on Twitter recently stated that, if given a choice, they would take Ennis over Wiggins. I like Ennis and think the Raptors should go hard to try and draft him, but that’s just crazy. A funny fact. In a lot of scouting reports, Ennis has been called a “European-style point guard” and it’s actually a compliment. How times have changed.

– Why is Kobe over at the Raptors bench talking to Lowry? That doesn’t seem right to me.


– The Lakers just defended well enough that they caused a 24 second violation. Not a great start to the quarter for the Raptors. Next time up the court, Ross took a quick jumper and missed. This all goes back to their Rocky III strategy. I really think I might be on to something with that.

– Kelly just ran over Lowry and Lowry got called for an offensive foul. Okay. I guess the ref thought Lowry stepped in front of him on purpose?

– Lakers haven’t hit a shot, yet. Still apparently trying to make the Raptors too comfortable. Lull them into a sense of security. Raptors have gone on 10-0 run. It’s all going according to plan for the Lakers…

– I love how Matt Devlin gives these rather arbitrary stats. I remember him talking about how one Raptor player has scored 34 points in the last two games, as if it was supposed to be impressive.

– Amir hit a three and then took another one next time up and missed. The thing is that his form actually looks good. I’m predicting he’ll hit over 30% next year and possibly close to 35%. Right now he’s shooting .244. DeRozan is shooting .297.

– Wow. Nick Young played defense until the end of the shot clock, forcing DeRozan into a airball.

– Next play up, DeRozan gets a wide-open jumper with no one within ten feet and nails it. I guess the whole defense-thing was just an anomaly for Young.

– Amir took another three. Okay, even I think he’s going a little overboard now. He’s taken one less three in this game than he did in all of the 2012 season.

– DeRozan didn’t get a foul call, didn’t get back because he was complaining to the refs and then the Lakers just hit a three. I HATE when guys do that. Just shut up and get back on defense and talk to the refs during a break in the action. Lots of players do it, but the number of times it leads to something bad on the other end is astounding.

– Speaking of things I hate, the @AskMatt questions are always obvious as hell or stupidly leading.

– Game is now tied after another Laker three. Raptors 8-23 from three. Now we just need Matt or Jack to say, “I might believe the strategy now. They’re making the Raptors miss open shots, now”

– Trivia Question Answer: A.C. Green. They didn’t mention he also holds the NBA record for most consecutive days without having sex.

– JULYAN STONE IS IN THE GAME? It’s just his third appearance since December 10th.


– I’d love to see a team comprised of Nick Young, J.R. Smith, Jamal Crawford, Carmelo Anthony and DeMarcus Cousins. They’d score 130 points a game, give up a 150 points a game and get into three fights a game with each other because they aren’t getting enough shots.

– Vasquez just had his best minute of the season. He got a big floater to put the Raptors up by one, got a steal from behind as he ran back on defense, and then got a offensive rebound and put-back to put the Raptors up three.

– Interesting fact. Vasquez has the most shots attempts per minute than anyone on the team except for DeRozan. Why does everyone call Vasquez a pass-first point guard? He takes as many shots per minute as Manu Ginobili and Eric Gordon.

– Amir just faked a long jumper, causing Kelly to run at him. If he didn’t travel, it probably would have ended up with 2 points. That’s exactly why you want Amir taking those long jumpers, once in a while.

– After a good defensive set on the other end, Young just hit a three to put the Lakers up by four.

– Just showed a shot of Valanciunas on the bench. He doesn’t look happy. He hasn’t played badly, but foul trouble has hurt him. He’s rebounded well, but can’t get any offense going from the bench.

– DeRozan just took a contested long jumper. With lots of time on the clock.

– Lowry drives to the hoop for a big bucket and then hits a big three. He’s the Raptors’ biggest weapon in crunch time. Unless he starts trying to do too much.

– Amir fouled Kelly taking a three. They’re going to replay. Time to lie down and take a 20 minute nap.

– That was the quickest replay I’ve ever seen. Usually they watch it WAY too many times and drag the game out longer. I wonder if it’s a directive from the league.

– Nick Young has 22 points.

– Lowry hits another big shot on the drive with less than 2 left.

– Nick Young now has 25.

– Raptors down by four after DeRozan goes one for two at the line. Is it just me, or is DeRozan not a good crunch-time player? He seems to force a lot of shots and miss a lot. Maybe trying to do too much. Could be why he’s got a .510 True Shooting percentage. Goes to the Rudy Gay Principle. Yes, he’s scored 23 points, but he did it on 24 shots. The seven assists is definitely nice, but he’s not a guy you want having the ball as much as he does.

–  On cue, DeRozan forces a tough shot and misses. Even Matt and Jack criticized him for that one.

– Nick Young forces a bad shot but gets bailed out with a foul. Considering the view we got on the replay, I can’t say whether it was a foul or not, but Matt seemed 100% sure. He’s been taking lessons from Tommy Heinsohn.

– DeRozan just got a technical called when they’re down by six with twenty seconds left. Not smart.

– If Nick Young had a brain in his head, he might be a good player and not a guy who has played on four different teams in seven years.

– Lakers win 112-106. If the Raptors lose their next game against Charlotte, full blown panic will set in among Raptors fans. Bank it.

– Rod Black asked Pau Gasol how the game was won. I really wished he had said, “By scoring more points than the other team.”, because that’s basically what it was.

– Maybe I was really onto something with the Rocky III strategy. The Raptors went 5-6 from three in the first half and shot .737 from the field as a whole, in the first quarter. For the rest of the game they shot 4-23 from three point range and .423 from the field.


– Valanciunas played just 14 minutes, shot 2-3 and grabbed 7 boards. He picked up 3 fouls, but I would have liked to have seen him play more.

– Vasquez played 21 minutes and took 11 shots. Nick Young played 30 minutes and only took 13.

– Julyan Stone played 13 minutes. I find that shocking not just because it’s Stone, but because I don’t remember him out there beyond few seconds I saw him at the end of the third quarter.

– When Stone is now ahead of you in the rotation, you know you’re toast. I’m talking to you Landry Fields, who probably thought he’d finally see some real minutes with Salmons out.

  • Andre Julian Ward

    disgusting loss ….

    • jacobd4

      Got so many likes on the quick reaction thought you’d try saying the same thing on this recap?

  • Tanks-a-lot

    When Greasy gets close to the basket he still tries to float in the tear drop. WTF, use the back board dumb ass.

    • Vince

      It’s General Greivis

      • Tanks-a-lot

        I’m going to drop the nickname when I feel like I can trust Greasy to stick with being a PG, not a shooting guard.

        • Roarque

          You do understand that people whose first language is Spanish would think the nickname Greasy is too close to the derogatory slur Greaser which many would say is racist.

          • Tanks-a-lot

            I don’t care. “derogatory slur”, sure, about as derogatory as the term “preppy”. There is a popular movie called Grease, I would recommend it for those that don’t know where the term ‘Greaser’ comes from.

            btw, for the Central and South Americans the actual derogatory terms are ‘wet back’ or ‘spic’.

            • GoingBig

              We’ve had this discussion before elsewhere. Your idea of what is offensive has no connection to the reality of the slurs that are used against Hispanics. I’ll just leave you to your nonsense of the musical ‘Grease’ or getting greasy working on a car engine.

              You omitted the often used adjectival derogatory form used by whites – ‘greasy spic’ Please free to use it in the barrios of L.A. You’d be lucky to get out a chorus of “You’re the One That I Want.”
              I’ll bring a bag of popcorn and a mop. You can’t say you haven’t been told. Won’t spend any more time on correcting people on the internet.

              • plaid coast

                it makes tks. a-lt feel better about himself to make fun of minorities and women. arguing with him just draws more attention to it, i think.

              • Tanks-a-lot

                “You omitted the often used adjectival derogatory form used by whites – ‘greasy spic'”


                Shove your anti-white cultural marxist made up words right up your ass.

                • GoingBig

                  “Tears on My Pillow”


    In other news Kobe Bryant is still laughing at Derozan for thinking He is Kobe Bryant.


      5 years in the L…and he still wants to be Kobe when he grows up. #clown.

  • Jamshid

    Amir has a deadly range … so much improvement … Top 8 PF in this league …

    • FREEJV

      Its so deadly that Gasol was leaving him wide open on everry play loool

    • Nilanka15

      “Deadly range”?

      How about we just call it “range”?

  • jjdynomite

    Much better Tim W. You should be designated to do game commentary, as calling it in real-time subtly hinders your propensity for negativity, repetition and condescension. Good job.

  • Will

    This was the Golden State game all over again. Play great and build up a big lead, then fall in love with the jump shot, stop playing defense, and give the game away. Thank goodness we’re in the East.

    • Ghotte

      Agreed. They completely decided not to be aggressive, took predominately outside shots and didn’t impose their will on the Lakers. That’s the reason JV was on the bench although a few starters should have joined him in the 2nd half. Don’t see how this was coaching; seemed to be almost completely on the players (with a couple exceptions.)

  • RaptorFan

    I must say you did a good job with this Tim W. You clearly put the time in and just commented on the game (and not your past opinions). I can’t speak for everyone else but it’s actually refreshing after a loss.

    You should call this Tim’s Game Notes.


  • Louvens Remy

    Nice. A column that’s not about you. Just the game. Thanks bra.


    im starting to think Demar is getting an ego with all this allstar talk and now hes letting his ego go to work during games loool


      Starting to? Oct 27th – ” I just don’t think nobody can guard me.” …. “I know I can score when I want to.”


      An All Star… in his effin mind, maybe.

      • FREEJV

        oh yea i remember listening to that and laughing cuz it was preseason and he shit the bed in the season opener loool

  • Roarque

    This game and to some degree the Celtics game show me that the Raptor’s coaches have failed to convince these young men that they are not ready for prime time. The Raptors have so much raw talent that needs to be shaped and molded by a top head coach – then they can go somewhere in the playoffs. Unfortunately there are very few top head coaches in the NBA, maybe a dozen. A top head coach knows that this is not about the mechanics of basketball but the psychology of winning.
    The exceptions are Kyle Lowry and Amir Johnson. Two starters who have learned to check their egos at the door. A couple of the Kings might have the right stuff – Masai should find out who they are and plan to keep them for the playoff run in 2015/16.

    • FREEJV

      Amir learned to check his ego? then what the hell did i watch out there today with all the 3s he took ?

      • FREEJV

        btw amirs matchup the last 4 games : Ilyasova : 29 pts
        Sullinger : 25/20
        Kevin love : 16/12 (he did a good job here but still)
        Ryan Kelly (LOL) : 17 points

        Dont know what has happened to the warrior we all saw last year.

  • John Pinsky

    Honestly didn’t even realize this was one of Tim’s until the comments section… must be off his game


    “Is it just me, or is DeRozan not a good crunch-time player?” I willing to guess the numbers show he is simply brutal in the crunch. I may be wrong, but I doubt it.

    “Valanciunas still holding the ball too long before he makes a post move” That ish makes my eyes bleed. Hey, JV…watch this a couple of 1000 times, although I doubt it will help. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rPhM1Y8EUdw

  • tonious35

    One thing about the context of Tim W.’s posts that i found consistent is that he never wants us to make quick claims that we are a TRUE contending team at this moment. Tim W. might take it too far to say all the wins are fools gold, but if we stay the coarse with this current roster our ceiling will only be limited to a 2nd round exit in the Eastern conference. Not just this Roster, but the head coach goes along with it. I mean if you make Spolestra, Popovich, or even Brad Stevens the coach at this game for the Raps, he would of not tolerated any mistakes during the 15 pt lead and found a way to make the team just slaughter them by 25 at least. It’s not halfway into the season, but let’s just see really how our team plays after every team takes notice from their scouting reports and let’s see now how Casey’s flaws really show up in rotations and match-up strategies. I like all these players on our team as people now, but if it comes to getting more Ws and playoff Ws, I don’t mind trading or replacing anybody from this team to get better for the future.

    I like it how some of us posters are stating that when we watch these games, that we are expected to win these games. THAT IS GREAT! We should of won this damn game, and hold a 15 pt lead from the 3rd quarter start. Casey should of benched players quickly that were messing up our momentum. This just adds to our winning culture foremost. MU is starting to do his job not on the roster, but on the fans as well.

  • makokid

    finally the Raptors has been scouted… if they want to contend,they need one more piece… maybe an Nba starter caliber at 4… so they can bring Amir from the bench along with Patterson…. c’mon Masai….let’s do it…

  • Stef 511

    Can’t believe the idiots here handing out ‘compliments’ to Tim W like they were gently handing him sugared olive branches. To all of you, gfy’s . Tim does a way better job when he’s writing exactly what he wants to write, not what you want him to write. Never saw fifteen year olds so full of themselves and so full of shit. And if you’re not fifteen, well you sure fooled me.

    Sunday’s AskMatt was just to help Jack extract his foot from his mouth. Earlier, he’d gone on about the travesty it’d be to see the Lakers and the Celtics pick one-and-two in the upcoming draft, how he’s ‘sick of it’ with the ‘rich getting richer’ … and the hilarity ensued. So later, Matt got the chance to ask (or ‘be asked’ … ya ok) outright whether a team should TANK for the picks (in so many words) or go for the wins … all to give Jack a chance to stumble around, saying unconvincingly that ‘well ya, ya gotta go for the wins …’ . Ok Jack. We’re all real convinced that you mean it. I was on the floor.

    Of course, some of the boyz from around this site had to have gotten real uncomfortable with all that. The truth that Jack inadvertently said basically, was that YOU CAN’T WIN A CHAMPIONSHIP WITHOUT ELITE TALENT AND THE LAKERS AND CELTICS INSIST ON GOING FOR CHAMPIONSHIPS. Unlike the Raptors.

    And … if you think we’ve got championship-in-the-making type of caliber on this team …? … I’ve got a bridge in New Jersey to sell you.

    • Nilanka15

      Sticking with the #AskMatt question, he initially said, “well it depends on the draft”, and then went on to say that you always want to win.

      Ummm, how does that make sense? If you always want to win now, the quality of the draft shouldn’t have anything to do with it.

      I think Matt had a momentary lapse of muzzle-free speech, where he said what he believes (i.e. that the Raptors need talent from a historically great draft class), but then attempted to fix that thought by saying winning now should be the goal.

    • truth be told

      Excellent analysis

  • ManInTheMiddle

    Good observations, fun read. Terrible game. On to Charlotte…

  • nottheendoftheworld

    Kendall Jackson is a Californian vineyard of some repute. Matt was again trying to make too much out of Jack’s apparent focus on drinking alcohol. Matt should try it, and maybe he wouldn’t be such a roly-poly pudding compared to Jack, who is busy running 10K every day.