Quick Reaction

Quick Reaction: Raptors 118, Bulls 123

Nuccio DiNuzzo / Chicago Tribune
Toronto 118 Final 123 Chicago

L. Nogueira42 MIN, 9 PTS, 8 REB, 1 AST, 2-5 FG, 0-1 3FG, 5-7 FT, 1 BLK, 2 TO, -7 +/-

Tried to watch a basketball game and a Sideshow Bob look-alike contest broke out with Bebe and Robin. Bebe felt right at home in the first half, cuddling between the lumbering Lopez and the confused Gibson, who’s still waiting for a trade to kickstart the P.J Brown phase of his career. Never has Bebe’s length surprised an entire team than the Bulls in the first half. I have to call out the stupid-ass three he took with 7 minutes left – what’s he even doing on the perimeter? He was on the court during the Bulls late run, which featured him bobbling balls and constantly inbounding the ball after made Bulls shots.

D. Carroll41 MIN, 9 PTS, 2 REB, 2 AST, 3-8 FG, 2-7 3FG, 1-2 FT, 0 BLK, 0 TO, -9 +/-

Wasn’t he hired for nights like these to guard guys like Jimmy Butler? I recall him hitting a three early, and then wandering off only to return to guard Butler when he had it going, which he did a horrible job of. That airball out of a timeout in a two-point game with 4 minutes left needs to be forgotten, along with a ridiculous three-shot foul on Dougie M, and climbing Dwane Wade’s back on a pump-fake. Trade this bum.

J. Valanciunas33 MIN, 14 PTS, 7 REB, 0 AST, 7-11 FG, 0-0 3FG, 0-0 FT, 2 BLK, 1 TO, 0 +/-

A rare game where he actually faced another old-school center in Lopez, and somewhat of a big in Gibson. Had some nice rolls on the pick ‘n roll, on one he picked up a silly but hilarious technical for hanging on the rim. I felt he could’ve had a big night but nobody apparently felt that his offense would be valuable or efficient, so he never touched the ball. I don’t actually recall the Raptors feeding him the ball at any point in the fourth quarter or OT. What a waste.

K. Lowry44 MIN, 27 PTS, 9 REB, 12 AST, 7-17 FG, 2-9 3FG, 11-14 FT, 1 BLK, 3 TO, -3 +/-

He could do anything he wanted on the court against this opposition and only had 14 shots in regulation and instead focused on his passing, especially down to the bigs. He saw that the Bulls are weak opposition and tuned his game accordingly while stepping off the pedal. Bad idea. This game should’ve been put out of sight at the start of the fourth by Lowry, and instead we let the Bulls back in, even after the third-quarter warning signs of a heating Jimmy Butler. Also, why is he guarding Jimmy Butler when we know Butler loves to shoot over smaller players in face-up situations?

D. DeRozan43 MIN, 36 PTS, 8 REB, 2 AST, 10-23 FG, 0-1 3FG, 16-17 FT, 1 BLK, 2 TO, -4 +/-

My Dad’s not a big fan of DeRozan. He wants him to average 8 assists and feels he needs to have a pass-first mentality and that he’s too selfish of a player. I’m like, “Dad, can you please stop yelling, I’m standing right next to you”. I don’t know if Jimmy Butler’s defense under Thibodeau is the same as under Hoiberg, but DeRozan was able to navigate him pretty easily in the first half, but as the game got tighter, it became increasingly difficult for him to manufacture efficient looks. The reason we sometimes get frustrated by his shot selection is because it can easily improve if instead of shooting in a predetermined way he, you know, looks up. That fourth quarter Bulls run can be attributed to some of his poor shots. And please stop complaining to the refs about Butler getting calls, because you get equally dubious calls as well.

T. Ross25 MIN, 7 PTS, 3 REB, 1 AST, 3-10 FG, 1-7 3FG, 0-0 FT, 0 BLK, 0 TO, -6 +/-

Missed looks he normally makes, including ones to tie it with 1:40 and 1:18 left in OT. Didn’t play much, with Casey opting for a bigger lineup with Carroll instead. Also, was he supposed to guard Doug McDermott?

C. Joseph23 MIN, 14 PTS, 3 REB, 1 AST, 5-6 FG, 3-3 3FG, 1-1 FT, 0 BLK, 2 TO, -5 +/-

Had a big three to push the lead back to 13 after Bebe and Ross were playing hot potato. Then had another moments later. Backup point guards are like referees. If you don’t notice them, they’re usually having a good game. I didn’t notice him much until then, so I’m inclined to give him a pass tonight.

N. Powell12 MIN, 2 PTS, 0 REB, 1 AST, 0-5 FG, 0-3 3FG, 2-2 FT, 0 BLK, 0 TO, 4 +/-

Didn’t make his open threes, which earned him a quick hook. I would’ve tried him on Butler instead of Carroll. Can’t have been any worse, at least he would’ve made Butler work more than Carroll did, which was nothing.

J. Poeltl1 MIN, 0 PTS, 1 REB, 0 AST, 0-0 FG, 0-0 3FG, 0-0 FT, 0 BLK, 0 TO, 5 +/-

I’m 99% sure he was subbed in as a mistake.

Dwane Casey

Should’ve given it to JV more. Stuck with Carroll too long. Unimaginative offense through DeRozan. Shoud’ve had a full-force lineup to start the fourth.

Things We Saw

  1. The Raptors thought they had this game won midway through the third, and became way too casual after getting out to a 19-point lead. How we stepped off the throat of a team that’s beated us 9 times in a row prior to tonight is unfathomable.
  2. The Bebe/JV combo worked well with Lowry running pick ‘n rolls and dropping it off for them, but once you have iso-ball going on with JV, having JV and Bebe out there makes no sense as they get shoved to the perimeter where they have little value.
  3. I said it before, and I’ll say it again, Norman Powell needed a chance at guarding Jimmy Butler. It’s much more preferable than Caroll affording space and not recovering quick enough, or simply playing him too tight.
  4. When Lowry’s not there to rescue us, we’ll lose against teams playing at a high level. And the Bulls and Butler were playing at a high level for the last 15 minutes of this game.
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