Revenge of the Raptors. Big time.
|Amir Johnson, PF Shot Chart 25 MIN | 4-4 FG | 1-2 FT | 9 REB | 1 AST | 0 STL | 1 BLK | 3 TO | 9 PTS | +1Nobody needed the 4-day break more than Amir. He looked spry, active and diligent. It’s the Amir we’ve come to know and love. Timely help defense, creating separation with his screens, and tossing down a dunk in the pick-and-roll for good measure. Here’s hoping that Casey finds a way to keep him fresh for the playoffs.|
|Terrence Ross, SF Shot Chart 26 MIN | 6-12 FG | 0-0 FT | 2 REB | 1 AST | 1 STL | 1 BLK | 0 TO | 18 PTS | +11Screens + Kings = wide open three for Ross. The Raptors didn’t run anything complicated and they didn’t need to. The Kings wings mailed it in. Ross gladly capitalized.|
|Jonas Valanciunas, C Shot Chart 26 MIN | 7-9 FG | 0-2 FT | 5 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 14 PTS | +5Revenge game! Last time the Raptors played the Kings, Jonas was thoroughly dominated by DeMarcus Cousins. This time, Jonas jumped all over a visibly disinterested Boogie, and showed off his full arsenal of post moves. He dropped in a 10-foot jumper. He tossed in some hooks, He grabbed offensive rebounds and converted easy put-backs. The key to his success — aside from Cousins’ malaise — was making timely decisions.|
|Kyle Lowry, PG Shot Chart 39 MIN | 2-11 FG | 7-8 FT | 3 REB | 7 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 4 TO | 12 PTS | +13Tweaked his ankle in the first quarter and looked a step slow thereafter. Knowing that his shot was off, Lowry used his craft and guile to generate free-throw attempts. Gambled a bit too much against Thomas on defense. Ho-hum from Lowry.|
|DeMar DeRozan, SG Shot Chart 33 MIN | 4-13 FG | 7-10 FT | 1 REB | 6 AST | 1 STL | 1 BLK | 2 TO | 15 PTS | +4Played very well early on, dropping long jumpers and driving into the lane. Slacked off later on in the game. With his teammates stepping up, Dwane Casey was afforded the rare opportunity to give DeMar some rest. Good job on the drive-and-kick. Bad job with shot-selection (as always).|
|Tyler Hansbrough, PF Shot Chart 7 MIN | 0-1 FG | 0-0 FT | 4 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 0 PTS | -2Once you’ve seen Hansbrough play one game, you’ve seen all that there is to see with Hansbrough. Energy, Rebounding, Hustle, Crazy, Fouls. All of the fouls.It was hilarious seeing him contending for rebounds against Reggie Evans because that wasn’t basketball.|
|Patrick Patterson, PF Shot Chart 27 MIN | 6-8 FG | 0-0 FT | 6 REB | 1 AST | 1 STL | 2 BLK | 1 TO | 15 PTS | +92Pat is back! The Kings defense was slow to close out on the perimeter and Patterson capitalized appropriately. Popped out for jumpers and crashed the boards. Threw in a pair of nice weak-side blocks for good measure. He’s a man after our hearts.|
|Chuck Hayes, PF Shot Chart 11 MIN | 0-1 FG | 0-0 FT | 4 REB | 0 AST | 2 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 0 PTS | +9Solid Boogie duty from Chucky. He used his bulk to hold his ground in the post and utilized the swipe technique to great effect against Boogie. That’s all we could ever ask for from Hayes.|
|John Salmons, SF Shot Chart 24 MIN | 4-9 FG | 0-0 FT | 2 REB | 2 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 8 PTS | +6Rest for Salmons is like crack for Rob Ford — he needs it. Kept the Kings’ perimeter defenders off-balanced with his herky-jerky game.|
|Landry Fields, SF Shot Chart 3 MIN | 0-0 FG | 0-0 FT | 0 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 0 PTS | -6He played.|
|Greivis Vasquez, PG Shot Chart 18 MIN | 1-5 FG | 2-2 FT | 0 REB | 3 AST | 2 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 4 PTS | +9It’s always important to evaluate process over results. Vasquez played the way he always does — YOLO-ly, and it didn’t work out for this game. When his heat-check shots go in, we cheer. When they don’t, I’m compelled to toss verbal jabs on twitter. The results aren’t always bad, but the process always is. He could be one of the league’s best back-up PG’s if he just made sounder decisions.|
|Nando de Colo, PG Shot Chart 1 MIN | 0-0 FG | 4-4 FT | 1 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 1 BLK | 0 TO | 4 PTS | -1He also played.|
Good job managing DeRozan’s minutes. He made the gutsy call to take out his two lead-dogs with 2 minutes left in the third while DMC, Gay and Thomas shared the court. The gambled paid off as the bench-unit managed to actually outscore the Kings’ starters by 5 in that stretch. Ran some nice plays for Ross and Jonas.
Four Things We Saw
- Ben McLemore is really good at jumping and basketball. His jumpshot is quite erratic, but his combination of athleticism and length has shades of Terrence Ross. Unfortunately, just like Ross, Gay will most likely stunt his development, which is a shame. There’s a lot of talent in that kid.
- Speaking of talent, DeMarcus Cousins is really good at basketball. He isn’t very good with managing his emotions. When he’s frustrated, it’s readily apparent, and it takes him out of his game entirely. He basically spent two full quarters pouting, yet he still managed to finish the game with 24 points on 12 field goal attempts.
- DeMar continues to receive All-Star calls. Conversely, the referees have clued into Lowry’s craftiness (read: flopping) and he’s now getting more doubt than benefit. The pendulum swings both ways.
- Wait, Rudy Gay shot 5-of-13 from the field and finished with only 1 assist to his credit? You don’t say…
- The Raptors matched their win-total from last year with 22 games left to play! (credit: commentor Jeffrey Yau)