Clippers 126, Raptors 118 – Box

The sidebar here is the Raptors losing to the Clippers on account of some defense that is best forgotten, especially when it concerns J.J Redick, Jamal Crawford, and Blake Griffin. The story is Terrence Ross who tied Vince Carter’s 51-point mark on 16-29 FG, 10-17 3FG, and 9-10 FT. I’m sure the web isn’t short of articles chronicling Ross’ efforts, so I’d like to step back and try to examine what we have here as a player.

Here’s a guy who I was comparing to Chris Jefferies not too long ago dropping 51 points against a Western conference contender. The variety on offer at the ACC last night ranged from long-range bombs, put-back dunks, side-stepping screens, drives to the lane and even some hang-time layups. So it’s not like he just got hot from outside – there was a little bit of everything to Ross’s game. The Clippers tried putting everyone from Jamal Crawford to Matt Barnes on him, only to find out that once a player gets hot hot, there’s little one can do.

[Watch a Video of Terrence Ross’s 51 points – Here are his 16 FGs]
[Watch a GIF of the DeMar DeRozan Injury (Did Hedo Turkoglu Kick His Leg Out?)]
[Read: Reaction: Clippers 126, Raptors 118]

So what do we know about Ross?

He’s a very good shooter
After shaking off the rookie-jitters and awarded some consistently playing time where he doesn’t have to look over his shoulder after each miss, he has delivered. Ross is now shooting 41% from three this season, after shooting just 33% from downtown last year. When he’s open, and he has been of late, he’s killing teams. The question now becomes that since he’s on the radar and defenses will adjust to his knack for the three, how will he respond? That’s a question for another day but for now he’s living up to his draft day billing of being a great shooter.

His mid-range game is improving
Last night we saw to some degree how he might respond. Granted that the Clipper defense wasn’t exactly air-tight so it may not be the ideal test, however, that doesn’t preclude us from drawing some inferences regarding Ross’s ability. Of late, he’s much more confident evading a defender trying to close-out and stepping into the 17-21 foot range and launching a jumper or leaner that has a good chance of going in. Like any great scorer, if Ross hopes to become one, this is the shot that he has to master. Much like Joe Johnson, Rip Hamilton, and going as far back as Mitch Richmond, or to a greater extent, Kobe Bryant. This is the shot that will ultimately determine whether Ross is a 3-and-D man or a dependable scorer that can lead the scoring on a team.

Comparing his shot distribution from last year to this, he’s essentially taking the same shots he did before, this time he happens to have the confidence that is vital to shooting.

He’s above-average on defense
As Blake spoke with him about, he’s much more serious about defense than his play indicated last year.  If he is to be talked about in terms of the franchise’s “core” or “nucleus”, this has to be a prerequisite (goes for DeRozan as well).  Dwane Casey’s shown some surprising confidence in Ross by going to him as a stopper in game-changing situations and he’s responded positively.  There’s no denying that he has significant work to do here, as even seen against the Clippers, but it’s encouraging to see that this is part of his game is being tuned rather than ignored.  In this sense, he reminds me of an early Tracy McGrady.  Tracy McGrady at the same age was a more accomplished player given that he came into the league early, but McGrady in year two is a striking comparison.

It feels odd to compare Ross to McGrady given the latter’s accomplishments.  One has to try hard to remember what the feelings and opinions on McGrady were at the time rather than be clouded by his later career.  If you make that mental leap, you’ll find that Ross isn’t a far-off comparison.

He’s capable of having a 50-point game
Other than Dana Barros (who some might say was a decent player in his own right), players who score 50+ in a game (last 20 years), end up being quite capable NBA players.  It’s almost as if scoring 50 in a game is a verification of talent, or a litmus test of a certain level of quality.  If you’re able to do it, you’re somebody.  With this game Ross has well and truly announced himself in the NBA, and this game will bring him into far greater focus than winning the slam-dunk competition.  Coincidentally enough, I think it’ll have the same impact as it did for Jamal Crawford back in the 2006-07 season when he dropped 52 against Miami at Madison Square Garden.

When Ross steps on the court against Brooklyn on Monday night he’ll be the talk of the stadium.  The defense isn’t going to treat him as third fiddle behind DeRozan and Lowry, but as someone to plan for because the signal that he sent out against the Clippers is that he’s somebody.  How he’s going to respond to that sort of focus will be telling.

Primary scorer? Not yet
Some moments against the Clippers would have you believe otherwise, but Ross isn’t someone you can give the ball to at a tail end of a shot clock and expect a reasonable look to follow. Maybe that will change – especially if this shot against the Clippers (GIF) is a predictor of anything – but as of right now he can’t be considered a primary scorer. Of course, at this point in his career he doesn’t need to be that, and a fair target for him is somewhere along where Morris Peterson was in his second year. In terms of points, rebounds and steals, Peterson/Ross stand at 15.5/13.6, 4.6/4.4 and 1.3/1.2. Pretty close, and keep in mind that Ross is two years younger than Peterson was in his second year.

The hopes for Ross are higher than Peterson, but at this juncture of their careers being level with Peterson has to be considered on course, with the jump in the curve hopefully later in Ross’ career.

His athleticism is secondary
Despite winning the slam-dunk and billed as a high-flyer, Ross’s athleticism can’t be classified as the Vince Carter dunk-in-your-face-no-matter-where-and-who-you-are, but more opportunistic like this play (GIF) .  I’ll propose that the rumour he’s a great dunker is a myth, he has far more valuable subtleties in his game than just jumping ability and that’s where his value lies. Anyone can dunk, not everyone can fake a three, step in, put a guy on his hip, lean in for a jumper.

His dribble is tight
This is something we don’t talk about nearly enough.  He has superior handles than DeRozan and can get to where he needs to go with far less risk of bobbling the ball, having it nicked, or dribbling it off his feet.  This can be huge for Ross because it allows coaches to design a wider variety of plays rather than just catch-and-shoots.  We’re already seeing some of it when Ross comes off the baseline, uses a screen at the elbow and curls inside instead of peeling to the three-point line.  That ability to catch the ball off a screen and put it on the floor against the trailer, the big, plus any potential “swipers” is what can open up one’s game to the point where you can be trusted as a clutch-time player.

So yeah, Raptors lose to the Clippers despite a massive game from Ross including a ridiculous third quarter where he pulled the Raptors back when everything pointed to a blowout after DeRozan was ruled out.  The quarter-by-quarter scoring was 15, 8, 13 and 15.  A win would’ve capped off a nice evening but against a Clipper offense that was ticking in transition, and Raptors defense hampered by another poor outing from Amir Johnson (against Griffin).  The Clippers shot 55% which more than made up for their -10 on the boards.

DeMar DeRozan’s ankle sprain looked bad at the time (did Turkoglu do it on purpose [GIF]).  X-Rays are negative and there’s no timetable for return, we’ll know more on Sunday.

  • Marz

    I disagree about the handles. They looked good last night, but the norm has been him losing control or balance when doing crossovers, and usually not getting a shot off out of it. Of course, his dribble is much quicker than DeRozan’s, and has a lot more potential. So I certainly can see it becoming a staple of his game. And I can’t wait until that happens :)

    Also, RE: Midrange, “Like any great scorer, if Ross hopes to become one, this is the shot that he has to master.” This is exactly the point that many seem to be missing with DeRozan. He has the midrange game, he just needs to develop the outside shot. Ross is going to be a better scorer because he can hit the 3 point shot with ease. That makes score X points on Y shots, where Y < X, much easier for Ross. Hopefully DD can get a better stroke from outside, but I think Ross at DeRozan's career-stage is going to be a fantastic player.

    • arsenalist

      Nice point about differentiating the midrange game and the outside shot. Sometimes I lump them together. Yes, DeRozan’s mid-range (8-17 feet) is superior to his 18-23 feet game. I always thought Hoop Data’s ranges were off and that mid-range needed to cover more, that’s why the stats don’t scream this out:

      http://www.hoopdata.com/player.aspx?name=DeMar%20DeRozan

      As much as I smirk at advanced stats at times, the one thing they do have it right on is the long-two. I don’t think the “may as well step back and take a three” approach is sound either, I just feel that that’s generally a poor shot that’s almost always what the defense is willing to give you. So you’ll never hear me preaching that DeRozan should focus on becoming a great 22-foot shooter. If it happens, obviously great, but I’d rather he improve his post-up game which can unlock a realm of opportunities for everyone.

    • Raptogram

      Ross has a nice three point stroke, Ray Allanesque.

      I would say he’s like a taller Jason Terry, with good quickness and a good all-around, athletic game.

      Ross will be integral moving forward. So will JV.

      • Casey Sherman

        Ray Allenesque, really? Ross puts much more arc on it and the release is slower…

        • rapierraptor

          Jesus, tough critic. He could just be referring to the form and fluidity of his shot.

      • moe

        terry couldn’t play defense

        • morgan c

          Also, Ross is legit 6’6 or 6’7 possibly. Terry is 6’2.

    • Anan

      I’ll say this about the handles – they’re much better than DeRozan’s in his 2nd year. He was getting past abled defenders to about 6 – 10 feet from the basket for a respectable drive. Definitely room to improve but not as bad as probably thought.

    • golden

      Definitely. Up until last night, I was cringing every time Ross put the ball on the floor. I really hope he can keep it up, because Ross is almost like the SG equivalent of Paul George, minus the handle. George came into the league with better ball skills, but had to improve his shooting. In fact, PG was barely league average PER until this year, and very inefficient offensively. Ross already has the better shooting stroke, and needs to improve his dribbling, which will improve his slashing and FT game. Both have crazy athleticism, great D, size/length for position, quickness and team first attitudes. I don’t think it’s an unreasonable comparison.

    • big boi

      Agreed. Ross’ handle needs to improve.

    • monocled_gentleman_scholar

      Back in my day, crossing a guy over meant you would drive over him on your horse-drawn buggy.

    • ian M

      I agree with you about T.Ross’ handle (or lack there of). His dribble is a little high and his timing with his dribbling seems awkward at times. Plainly, I think the test for whether or not you have a ‘tight handle,’ is whether or not you can slash well – T. Ross, for all of his superb talents, has shown very inconsistent slashing ability. He could develop it, but he doesn’t have it right now.

    • sleepz

      Neither Demar or TRoss have good or even average handles but Raptor fans love to big up their own, reason be damned.

      The comparison to TMac is especially interesting. TRoss doesn’t have the handles, (remember TMac was playing point forward here in his last season) nor the diversity defensively that TMac had or the court vision but hey, let the fans dream about the days of contention right around the corner, because if you can drop 51pts in a regular season game, you have to be on your way to elite status.

  • raptorstand

    Every tanker on here screaming that we don’t have elite talent, if you think any of the Raptors have elite talent you don’t have a clue about basketball. I had the audacity to say that Ross to me looked Jordanesque in his movements on the court, his fluidity. the “people” who supposedly know everything there is to know about Raptors basketball ridiculed and had a real good time telling me Ross was nothing like the great one. The tankers seem to me have lost there ability to judge what they are seeing with the Raptors, lets say they have crap colored glasses on instead of rose. I was right we have elite talent on this team and we are just starting on the great basketball this team is going to produce, sure is nice to be an elitist.

    • Ion66

      I wonder if some of that is harder to see because Ross tends to look short, thin, shy and young. Sometimes it’s harder to see the game for the package it comes in. With Jordan, he looked like a beast when he did his thing. Ross is more of an “aww, shucks” kind of physical presence.

      • raptorstand

        My point is every tanker on here thought we didnt have elite talent on this team, and they didn’t mind telling everybody and anyone that had a different opinion , they didn’t know basketball and should just shut up and go away. I’m here to tell them from every Raptor fan that wants this team to win , to go pound salt and get back to the sewage pipe they crawled out of. To your point Ion66, Jordan had an ease and a fluidity on the court that made everything look easy, previously I commented that I seen flashes of this same thing from Tross. I got insulted pretty good that day from the tankers, and I’m here to say …….. elite this mofos.

        • j bean

          I said last year that T Ross was my favorite player, not because he is the best player but because of the excitement he generates.
          There is a major step for him to take if he is to be mentioned with the greats. The last six minutes of the fourth quarter is when MJ wanted the ball to put the game away. The last six minutes in yesterday’s game saw 0 buckets from Terrance.

          • jjdynomite

            Perhaps cuz Ross was being doubled without DD on the floor? He did get to the line 4 times in the last 6 minutes which amortized to the entire game is 32. See, I can cherry-pick positive stats just like you can the negative. Easy!

            • j bean

              Don’t misconstrue my comment as a negative. I was replying to raptorstand’s comment comparing him to MJ. MJ was always doubled in crunch time but more often than not he did what had to be done for the win. That’s what makes a player great.
              As you pointed out DD wasn’t around and nobody else stepped up to score any buckets when the game was on the line. That, plus no answer for BG was what put the game out of reach IMO.

              • raptorstand

                For the record I am not comparing him to MJ because of this game . I compared him to MJ earlier in the season because of his movements his fluidity his ease of movement. If Tross became half the player MJ was I would be very happy.

                • j bean

                  lol. As someone who is old enough to have watched him play, it gets a little touchy when I hear comparisons for any reason. I can’t separate him from his rings and the last minute heroics.

                • raptorstand

                  I am old enough to have watched MJ to. I would like to have seen MJ at 21 and compare their games. If Tross got the fire , the attitude , and the will to win , it would be very fun to be a Raptor fan.

                • raptorstand

                  I seem to remember that MJ played on a lot of bad teams and was the complete focus of the other teams. I also remember until he believed in the other players around him he was able to become the champion he was. By Rudy the black hole Gay playing in front of him for a year, this might have taught Tross about team first earlier then MJ in their matriculation. All I really know is its going to be fun no matter what happens watching a young player improve into what he is supposed to be.

                • j bean

                  His first 2-3 years weren’t on great teams even though they made the playoffs. After that they were pretty good but it took around 6-7 years until they won their first title. I never remembered this so I just looked it up. He also won defensive player of the year.

                • raptorstand

                  Magic and Bird had to leave the stage for the Bulls to win.

        • big boi

          Did you see Kobe’s first year? He was all bambi and awkward, admittedly younger than Ross, but he was given the opportunity to make mistakes, look stupid sometimes, but to learn, in his first year. Ross is getting that opportunity now.

          • ItsAboutFun

            Kobe was “given the opportunity” in his 1st year that Ross is only getting now? Ummmm, how is that? Ross averaged more minutes per game in his 1st year than Kobe did. In his second year, Kobe played 1 more minute per game than Ross has to-date, and Ross’s number is likely to go up. As opportunities go, it’s damn near even, with a slight edge on Ross’s side.

            • big boi

              Shoot, fair enough, games i saw – kobe played, might have been at the end of the year, I didnt know that. Think Ross has tremendous upside tho, particularly now that he is being given the opportunity. Whether that upside is Eddie Jones / Latrell Sprewell, or even higher, is up to him.

              • ItsAboutFun

                I totally agree that he has tremendous upside, and it is up to him. Thing is, it’s been up to him since he stepped on the court for the Raps, including earning the opportunities. From what I see, he seems to have the right disposition to understand why and when he’s sat down. Unlike many fans’ feelings, it will only bode well for his future that he accepts responsibility for his own lack of focus at times. I think he’ll get there, and we’ll all have many years of enjoying his play for our team.

    • Watchaone

      ..and if MU can draft a backup point guard and get two Jamal Crawford and a Rasho for the bench

      • raptorstand

        lolol and get Lebron and draft Wiggins and trade for Blake Griffin ….

        • Watchyatone

          is this the dude who was talking bout the T ross MJ thingy ? ok let me put it to you this way if the Raptors can two consisant scorers[jamal] and a big man[rasho] type for the bench and draft a point guard [ennis] and sign kyle .you and your MJ no wonder people laugh at you.;

          • raptorstand

            lolol your funny dude , thingy ?? is that like something that hangs out of your thongy?? have a nice day champ , laugh away lolol

    • raptorspoo

      LOL.. I don’t even know where to begin with this one. Jordanesque? Elite?

      I’ll just say this, I love your enthusiasm and positive thinking… albeit a little naive.

  • OakTree

    “I’ll propose that the rumour he’s a great dunker is a myth”

    WHAT!?!?

    Go check youtube, T Ross can throw down with the best of them.

    • OakTree

      Also, his athleticism is elite.

      T Ross is extremely quick and agile, and it’s his elite athleticism that’s the key to his potential on defense.

      He moves faster on the court than anyone else most of the time, with the exception of a few jitterbug point guards.

    • arsenalist

      I understand where you’re coming from. I’m of the view that Ross’s dunking ability doesn’t net him much of an advantage in the way he plays. He’s not like a guy who relies on jumping over people to be effective (like Vince did early on), his shooting touch, screen-usage and potential mid-range came will offer him far more than his dunking. So when I think of Terrence Ross, his dunking is one of the last thing that comes to mind and I’d say if he does prove to be successful, his dunking is the least of what will be remembered.

      • From the bench

        I agree with all of that. With this new offense post Rudy, Ross is doing an excellent job of moving without the ball and spotting up outside the arc. Tonight showed the next part of his game that he needs to continue to improve on. Once players start running at him, putting the ball on the floor and create. His shot is one of the prettiest shots in the league. I just assume it is going in now. I thought it was funny to hear Doc Rivers post game interview. He asked his team who the shooters on the team are, and the Clippers thought everyone BUT Ross. The secret is out now.

      • ckh26

        Agree completely. Right now in the game Ross is a good dunker on the break with a clear path to the basket or on a put back. When he has a chance to go the basket on a 2 on 1 break he almost always defers to the pass. This may be confidence or it may be his spot in the pecking order. But if he ever makes up his mind to go right at the defender 2 on 1 and either makes the dunk or picks up the foul on a consistent basis that should be the last step in his matriculation.

        Guys who can hit the 3, play above average D and can dunk over defenders
        on forays to the rim tend to become millionaires a few times over. Lets
        hope TRoss has to pay big taxes soon.l

        With apologies to Huey Newton.. “Future so bright we gotta wear shades”.

        • jjdynomite

          “Matriculation” vs. “Maturation”. “Huey Newton” vs. “Huey Lewis”. I’ll have what you’re smoking.

          • http://www.raptorsrepublic.com/forums/activity.php Doc

            *cough ….. Timbuk3 …… cough*

          • ckh26

            Sheesh on Huey Newton vs Lewis but matriculation in context still is what i want to say.
            Will send Sandro Lisi right over. Codeword is Ford

      • golden

        It’s not necessarily the dunking, it’s using the athletic ability to elevate in traffic and get a jump shot off. Ross rarely does that, and we saw that last night and he looked confident doing it. Just like Derozan, who was shying away from contact until this year, that’s an important step to take, which comes with experience and strength. To me, it was a great sign of things to come from Ross. Still a ways to go, though.

    • webfeat

      I think he means that his in game dunking isn’t at an elite level. He’s not a power player like Vince was. Ross will get his open lane dunks, but he won’t do it over defenders like Carter did.

      • OakTree

        I respectfully disagree.

        He’s not a guy that will routinely get body to body facial dunks, true.

        Vince
        did have a number of dunks like that, but they weren’t exactly routine
        for him either. I think this is a case of watching highlight reels too
        much and thinking this happened more than it really did.

        The only guys doing that regularly are Shaq types that are almost always bigger, stronger and more athletic than their defender.

        BUT,
        T Ross has shown repeatedly the ability to go over the box out on a put
        back, which is another (sneakier) type of power dunk.

        Add his
        put backs to his near free throw line transition dunks, and his alley
        oops, and you’ve got one of the most spectacular in game dunkers in the
        league, and I can guarantee you that the defense is worried about the
        dunk when T Ross puts the ball on the floor.

  • mike, prague

    Props to BC? … though he still did pass on Drummond

    • johng_3

      Besides Bargnani, BC has a pretty solid track record on the draft.

      • AnthonyF

        It was no a terrible pick. AB is the whipping boy to many people here, but he was a solid choice that year as I mentioned above. Easily could ave picked Tyrus Thomas, Sheldon Williams or Adam Morrison…..

        • jjdynomite

          Revisionist history. Only Raptor-mockers like Bill Simmons thought the Raps should have drafted Ammo. The choice truly was Aldridge vs. Bargs, and BC chose Bargs as a complement to Bosh, as Aldridge was considered too similar in skill sets to Bosh. Plus BC already hired his Italian BFF Gherardini. We all know how that turned out.

      • FLUXLAND

        No.. no he doesn’t. That’s revisionist history.

    • big boi

      Ross came at Casey’s recommendation. His home is seattle, saw a lot of Ross at U Dub

      • mountio

        which is ironic, because he promptly buried him on the bench (not disagreeing with you though .. cause what you are saying is right)

        • big boi

          Ya, but Gay was here a lot of that time, and dd plays heavy mins. Plus Ross did look lost out there often times, when given the opportunity. Lastly, pt is one of the few levers a coach has available to him, to motivate and reward players. But Gay moving on was critical in affording Ross the opportunity to develop, and he’s doing the rest.

          • mountio

            That explains some of it …. but doesnt explain AA routinely getting many more minutes over TR last year, or DC refusing to finish games with TR in favour of Salmons after the Gay trade.

            • big boi

              True re AA. Salmons I get, good ball handler, calm in the clutch.

  • robertparish00

    Thought it was funny that 3rd on the list of all time leading Raps scorers was Charlie V. Way to go TRoss.

    • mike, prague

      http://scores.espn.go.com/nba/boxscore?gameId=260326015
      … well when Pape Sow is your starting SF/PF and Darrick Martin gets 25min, can’t be surprised

    • Ion66

      Yeah, the whole Charlie V thing does mess with some of the theories here. The only thing CV’s 48 did was make his trade value go way up, which was great for us. Ross is a keeper though.

  • vino

    Took advantage of 40% off Raps gear and got myself a Ross shirt BEFORE this game!

  • onemanweave

    I was adamant before the draft two years ago that we pick Drummond if he fell to us. Despite misgivings about his motor, there was too much talent to ignore at that slot. I was emphatic, right after the draft that we’d made a mistake. I’ve been smugly self-satisfied as the big guy has shown he can handle the big show quite well.
    Then last night happened. T Ross may simply be a rotation player who got hot, hot, hot but it opens the possibilities that he can be a lot more. Maybe Casey and Colangelo knew more than we thought. Here’s hoping.

    • raptorstand

      One manweave , you have been a class act on this site during the turmoil that was the rule of tanker nation. Tross has emerged as a legitimate player on the floor, and could be really special, will he have bad games in the future? Undoubtedly, but this game forced the Timmy tankers of this site to readjust their brain patterns and look at things a little differently. We lost last night but I really think this game will be a benchmark to look back on.

      • onemanweave

        Wouldn’t it be ironic if the franchise talent we were hoping to land in the 2014 draft was already playing for the Raps? With the warts coming to the surface on most of the top draft candidates and the 51-point bombshell, it’s not totally impossible.
        We might have given up the guy we’ve been looking for in order to draft a rotation player. Then again, maybe we wouldn’t have. It makes it fun. This season has been a lot more fun than most and it’s a long ways from over.

        • sleepz

          TRoss is a franchise talent now? Sheesh.lol

      • sleepz

        Lol, what did one game do?

        I think it’s all the euphoric “we like points’ fans who has had their brain patterns adjusted by TRoss. Those fans that see the team for what they actually are, have more sense then to overreact to one game.

  • AnthonyF

    I think 3 years from now we’ll have to reassess BC as GM as he made some gutsy picks in mediocre positions that have worked…. DD, JV, TR. He’ll forever be questioned for AB, which was not a terrible pick (only Lamarcus Aldridge & maybe Rudy Gay being better, and remember Brandon Roy was not #1 because of his knee problems and Rondo #19).

    Add to that he made some good trades too. Terence Ross is what they introduced him as, a great shooter and defender with upside.

    • GetLicks

      No we don’t. Sure he was decent at scouting talent, no one has denied that. But he mis-managed his rosters, tried to build a team around his ‘superstar’ Bargnani, and failed to trade him way because of his own pride & ego.

      • AnthonyF

        He was not handled great year 1, and when it finally seemed he was turning the corner in 2011 he suffered a bad elbow injury, which pretty much was the end…. Not going to rehash it, but just stating facts.

        • GetLicks

          Dude Bargnani is just NOT a good NBA player. What does an elbow injury have to do with the fact that he’s one of the worst re-bounding 7 footers in NBA history? Or the fact that I’ve never once seen him dive for a loose ball in his entire career. He’s probably also one of the worst help defenders in the league. Those are the facts.

  • JonasBrutha

    Yes, the echoes of Ross’s 51 sent a reverb around the league, but the more important question we should be asking is whether or not he put his team and the coaching staff on notice. Casey should take this as a sign that maybe the kid is ready for a bigger offensive load and maybe stop running demars inefficient long two set every third play. I think the raptors have the potential to be a more efficient offensive team if we take half of demars touches and try and cater to Ross’s long range capabilities as opposed to designating him as a spot up shooter. I’m not sold on demar being the head honcho on this roster, these guys excel with ball movement and team ball. Although lowrys shot hasn’t been falling these last few games, it’s now safe to say that we’ve got two potent long range threats. Should be interesting to see the offense on Monday. Go raps!

    • mountio

      Good point. I better not hear the Salmons over Ross argument again. We are living through a similar Chuck Hayes over JV experiment …. and to put it very bluntly, it has to stop.

  • T.O hammer

    Ross was great and the future is bright for this guy. But I been on the forums recently and there a bad double standard in most raptors fans. Ross has a great game his the next T-mac. If DD get good game or put up 22/5/3.5 for the season but he has no talent or he has a low ceiling or we should trade him for a mid to late first and an expiring contact. If his is ceiling is 22/5/3.5 a game as the first option then what wrong that. I get the too many long twos and his defence is below average but James harden defence is worse and there field goal percentage are the almost the same 42.8/30.8 for DD and 44.4/32.1 for Harden. The rebs are the same. James is a better playmaker also averages 5.5 last a game but also has 3.7 turnover. DD averages 3.6 ast to 2.2 turnover and there the same age. James Harden is the best SG in the NBA without question but how is DD ceiling low. Or why do we got to trade him for a guy in college that may or may not pan out or if he does pan out and he just not as good. You only reason to trade a young good player if he has one year left on his contract and is not resigning or is a cancer on team. DD has four years left on is contract while get paid 9.5 million a year and is loved by everyone on the raptors. There more pros and very few cons. There no reason to trade him. Let keep everyone one and let this team grow.

    • raptorstand

      What Tross showed last night was to his teammates that he is a legitimate option on the floor. Tross has sat a lot on that bench with Jonas this season and he will look for Val down low when the shot is not there. Derozan needs to understand that the 5 bad shots he takes every game can be given to the 21 year olds. I think this game opens the floor up for everyone, we still have to go down low for the outside open shot , this game opens everything up on the offensive end.

      • ckh26

        Agree. With a 51 point calling card left in full view all over the NBA Dwane now has another option to draw up plays for. If we can stretch the floor even further with pindown’s curl’s off high screens and work real hard to get him that open look in the corner for 3 we take a little pressure off demar.. Over time Ross is going to recognize if the play is defended and can pass out of it to Demar who will have those slighly wider lanes to the basket. Nice homework for Dwane to have to work on.

        • mountio

          But, will Salmons still finish games? Vets win games, right DC?

          • ItsAboutFun

            Commitment and execution of what the coach asks is what gets players finishing and the chance to win games. Not birth names, birth dates, or any other labels fans cuddle with.

            • mountio

              Right … cause Salmons and AA were/are experts in execution of what the coach asks … especially when Salmons was handed the closing role without any history with Casey.
              Not sure why you have trouble admitting TR is a much better player than both of those guys and should never have lost PT to them ….

              • ItsAboutFun

                I don’t know where you get this “have trouble admitting…….” BS, but Ross has been getting the minutes when he’s performing well, and sits more when he hasn’t. I don’t know why you have trouble accepting such a simple concept. It’s the NBA, not the “everybody participates local community” league, and the coach knows what he’s been asking of the players. wtf do you know about any of it?

                PS. I think Ross has huge potential, and I also think he’s been handled just fine. What knowledge/expertise/evidence makes you so sure that he hasn’t been? I mean, your pretty damn insistent on peddling this perceived slight. What have you got?

                • truth be told

                  Every player on the Raps has huge potential……until they don’t.

                  Get aboard the Colangelo express. There’s a new captain but the scenery never changes. lol

                  We love points!!! haha

      • T.O hammer

        That is true. Derozan need to take less bad shot and i think he will. The team also need to get the ball down low to Val more and there times where Val need to get in to low post position more and want to basketball more instead of standing around . I was asking if that a good reason to trade him for mid to low first round pick.

        • raptorstand

          This is our team , these are our players that we are developing, this was a game changer , we have elite talent lets have some fun watching our homegrown talent grow and excel .

          • T.O hammer

            That what am talk about!!!!!!!!. We have three guys who in few years who can be top 5 players in there position . Let us the raptors fan base have fun watch these guys play and win. I want to see this team play in April and May. In a few years maybe play in June

            • raptorstand

              Cannot agree more.

      • Steve Lam

        I think we need to temper expectations here. DD went down and someone had to step up. That happened to be T Ross. Over in sacramento, with both Cousins and Gay currently out, Marcus Thornton scored 42 against the mighty defense of the Pacers. I don’t think anyone believes Thornton is now a ‘legitimate option’ on the floor after that performance. After one crazy game and everyone starts thinking T Ross is the next Paul George. Come on now…

    • jjdynomite

      I upvoted your rant but, TBH, leaving out Harden’s excellent 3PT% and 3PTM vs. DD is an exercise in cherry-picking on your part. The Beard’s three point prowess is so deadly because it forces defences to play him tight, which not only enables him to drive but also opens up space for shooters like Parsons and Lin. This is what DD lacks (at the moment) and this is exactly why we are all excited about Ross.

      • T.O hammer

        Thank you. I agree with you 100% on Harden is a deadly three point shooter, Demar is not and everything else you said . I was just point out how the field goal percentages are alike this season that all.

      • Guest

        Why don’t u look at 3pt attempts n harden only shooting 32%.when are ppl going credit demar for being a good player

        • ItsAboutFun

          lol, priceless. That extra 1.3 % from 3 this year is awesome though!

        • Abdi

          I don’t get it. Toronto raptors fan always want a guy who puts good number, is young, and wants to play here. Also is lock up for 4 years for 9.5 million a year.When did 22/5/4 become a bad thing? Why does half of the fan base want him gone for mid to late round pick?.smh

  • rapierraptor

    A couple of thoughts:
    1. I saw him do some REALLY encouraging things in terms of driving to the bucket that I hadn’t seen from him before.
    2. Most of us 1 year ago would have much preferred Harrison Barnes to Ross. I am not so sure that is still the case. Patience is a virtue. Go Raps!

    • raptorstand

      coma coma coma comalion, I feel a lot of people changing their colors after last nights game. Tank nation just change your name and jump on the bandwagon lolololololo

      • Watchyatone

        what? no 13 game thingy

    • Kujo2020

      Yeah, I thought Harrison Barnes would be better than Ross. I think Barnes will flourish on another team. For whatever reason, it’s mostly been a struggle in GS, though he did have a better rookie year than Ross, and showed flashes of brilliance. Sophomore slump perhaps? I would be surprised if GS to trades him.

      • Minks77

        HB has been solid in his backup role and excelled as a starter. His problem is his squad is in win now mode and doesn’t have time for a rookie/soph to develop especially as they need to play a lock down wing defender (Iggy) alongside no D Klay and steph the gambler. HB is a better player at this point than TR.

  • raptorstand

    51- elite 51- elite 51 – elite anybody wanna talk about elite lololoololol , IF YOU THINK TROSS IS ELITE YOU DONT KNOW NOTHING ABOUT BASKETBALL !!!!! WE HAVE TO LOSE THIS YEAR AND GET SOME ELITE TALENT!!!!!! Lets just say right here and now that every Tanker that has had the run of this blog needs to apologize and grovel to the fans that stood with this team , lolololololol God it feels good.

    • Watchyaone

      flight 31 went over area 51 and according to you we have elite sighting hehehe

    • big boi

      We should come together as a fan base. There are plenty of people who, much like Massai, were not always certain if this team could compete now and develop with the current roster, but absolutely didnt want to be in no-mans-land at the end of the season. I’d love to see Wiggins on this team, and hopefully, somehow, someday, we will. But right now this team deserves a chance, and our support.

  • AnthonyF

    Wonder if this get’s him in the Rookie/Sophomore game with JV? Looking @ the 2012 draft, I’d say so (plus he’s there for the Slam Dunk too).

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2012_NBA_Draft

    • FREEJV

      lol if he doesnt get in after scoring 50+ then idk what you consider a “rising star”.

  • FREEJV

    Terrence ross reserved his spot for the rising stars game with this performance.

  • Roarque

    Checked out the replay of Turk da glue stepping in on DDR and while I was organizing a lynch mob last night ( too much coffee after 6 pm ) it is obvious in the light of day that while his move may have been deliberate, DDR landed on his left foot first and his ankle rolled because he was still extending his foot while coming down to the hardwood. Bad mechanics in the heat of battle. Tough, tough luck at this point in the season.

  • moe

    he can be a poor mans Paul gerorge as best and that’s still great. he has defense and shooting plus the questionable ball handling.

    • raptorstand

      I have always said if Tross isn’t dunking twice a game he is doing his team a disservice. That is what he is going to work on , and I see this happening. Major step forward last night . How about hes just Tross and not a poor mans anything.

  • Copywryter

    What do Rip Hamilton, Allan Houston, Brandon Jennings, Rashard Lewis, Kevin Martin, Jamal Mashburn, Andre Miller, Jermaine O’Neal, Michael Redd, Brandon Roy, Damon Stoudamire, Amare Stoudamire Deron Williams and Terrence Ross have in common?

    Careful before you lionize this kid. He got hot but on the whole has not overwhelmed this season.

    • raptorstand

      Everyone of those players were great. Nobody is lionizing shite, We are watching a player become better and show ing his team his coach and the fans that he has game. He is a work in progress but he has proved he has elite talent, maybe we can all shut up about elite crap.

      • Copywryter

        Those players are/were not great. Many were good. Some very good. If T-Ross turns out to be ‘good’ then I’m all for it, but going on about how great he could be simply because he dropped 50 in a game is….well I guess it’s human nature.

        Donyell Marshall drops 12 treys:

        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pRkXajkibRI

        • raptorstand

          In their prime they were players every gm would want on their team. Nobody is going on about one game. What we are going on about is the future and what this gives our team. Every tanker on here said we need elite talent, kid puts up 51 , now you tell me , when do you think any of the top 8 in the draft is going to put up 51 against one of the best in the west. Lets have some perspective .

          • Abused Raptors Fan

            Raptorstands point about injuries sums up the reason why a lot of these guys have an asterisk besides their play during their primes. But what really could differentiate Ross from a number of these guys is his ability to translate his physical gifts into good-great defense. Guys like Martin and Amare put up great offensive stats but never did anything on defense. That’s not Ross.

      • Watchyatone

        you wait Vals gonna drop 60 !

    • GLF

      Most of the guys you listed were REALLY good at a point in their careers and injury fucked it up so I have no clue what you’re saying LOL.

    • RobertArchibald

      Not quite sure listing those players proves your point. If anything, those names are counter to your argument. What are you looking for, the next LeBron? I would take every single one of those names on my team in their primes.

      Some people’s expectations just aren’t realistic. Players like Jordan and LeBron come around once every couple of decades. And great players generally peak for only a few years, like all athletes. The fact that Ross had a night like this BEFORE he’s anywhere near his peak is encouraging.

    • FLUXLAND

      Copy man…. where you at? Welcome back..

  • hotshot

    So what?! Acie Earl once scored 46 points as a Raptor!!

    • hotshot

      Actually my bad it was 40 points and 12 rebounds but still,,,,, the point is that T.Ross more or less equals Mo Pete.

      • big boi

        No.Ross has a VERY high ceiling. It’s all up to him.

  • big boi

    Good piece, but you’re off the mark regarding his handle. That is a huge area of potential improvement for Ross, perhaps his weakest area. He does not have better handle than derozan.For him to develop fully, to not have salmons take his spot during winning time, to be a reliable ball handling 2 guard, to be able to better create his own shot, he needs to workon that part of his game.

  • Raptor-holic

    still pissed off about last night’s A grade instead of the obvious A+

  • Lupe fiasco

    Does this remind anyone of when Paul George became a superstar. Danny granger getting injured and now derozan getting injured

    • Abused Raptors Fan

      Thought about that last night actually haha

  • Son of Dad

    Demar Derozan is a poor mans Rudy Gay .

  • rap-tor

    Ross was so good from 3 that Casey put Novak so he could learn something form Terrence.

  • Kujo2020

    Ross is already easily a better shooter, and defender than DD. He’s a better ball handler as well, though DD has finally improved in that area this year. DD’s mid-range game is better

    I would still rather have Drummond than Ross, thought it at least appears Ross is capable of being more than role player.

    Let’s see how he performs going forward.

  • raptorspoo

    LOL before you ppl get ahead of yourself I’ve just give you two words: Brandon Jennings.

    Some of you are crowning him the next Jordan – i’m falling off my couch laughing. Don’t get me wrong, I think Ross will be a great role player in the future. “Role player” being the key word, as he exceeds in certain skills but probably won’t be able to put the team on his back night in and night out in pressure situations. I’d be happy if he developed in a Rip Hamilton level of player (different styles but talking level), where he’s awesome within his own skillset but you wouldn’t build a team with Rip being the center.

    • lolobones

      How would you know? He’s in his second year in the league and we have no idea what TR’s ceiling will be. Also, I should point out that Brandon Jennings is a starting PG in the league and hardly a role player.

    • FLUXLAND

      The guy that keeps calling him MJ is an epic moron (and never saw MJ play.)

  • Trace Fairley

    When is JV going to announce himself? Long overdue considering he had an extra yr of pro ball over TR

  • What the

    The Raptors will draft the 2nd best point guard in the 2014 NBA draft, I kid you not

    • tonious35

      Masai will draft and grab 2nd Rounders and Non-draftees, and they become All-Stars….MU’s scouting and development department in the next 5 years, DEAL WITH IT!

  • Brian L

    Two months ago: TRADE GAY, KEEP DEROZAN.
    Today: TRADE DEROZAN, KEEP ROSS

    • raptorspoo

      Three months ago: Trade Gay and DD, keep Ross.
      Today: Same.

      End result is the same :)

      • Brian L

        Two months later: TRADE ROSS, KEEP NOVAKAINE

    • DDayLewis

      Welcome to the Republic!

  • Tanks-a-lot

    OT post here
    How about some old school loving Raptors style? (and bonus Scalabrine)
    http://acidcow.com/pics/20140127/acid_picdump_126.jpg

  • FLUXLAND

    This will get lost in here, but meh..

    1. The last FT didn’t fall because of bball karma – he should have dribbled out that possession and called it a day.

    2. Thank you, thank you, thank you TRoss for not celebrating after hitting that 3 at the end of 3rd. You get it, kid, and you deserved the win for that alone. ( I know a certain pig farmer that would have thrown up the fingers had he hit that, even if down by 20 plus..lameass clown).

    • ItsAboutFun

      So it was a pig farmer that did this to you, hey. Sorry to hear that, but try to not hold it against them all.

      • FLUXLAND

        You didn’t even get the reference and you call yourself a Raptors fan… tsk tsk, p00ka.

        • ItsAboutFun

          lol, oh I got it just fine. You apparently didn’t get my inference, and you call yourself intelligent, tsk, tsk.

          • FLUXLAND

            Now, now Sir. I’ve never claimed to be intelligent. But, I can see how a simpleton like yourself would view me as such. You’re too kind, as always.

  • tonious35

    I am still on the Fence for Ross if he is a legit All-Star-capable player. Against the Nets, we might see a different Ross, who the hell knows? It’s up to the team and Ross himself. If DeRozen is not playing tomorrow, everyone shall see if this was not a Flukey Ross sighting that we witnessed on Saturday. Remember this, Danny Green from the Spurs can hit 40 + pts as well if Pop and the vets keep feeding him him the ball if he gets good open looks in a game. Ross just needs to remember that he is our 3 and D man… not Kobe Bryant, or even Paul George. I do not want to see Ross CHUCK UP shots off the dribble and early in the shot clock. He must shoot off of sets and screens. If the defense sags off or is displaced by a good screen for an open look, then Ross can take it.