And then thereís the Raptors, who basically have had the same starting lineup all season without any injuries and are starting to get blown out on a regular basis.
Theyíve lost seven of nine and the last three by an average of more than 22 per game. They give up more than 109 points per game, second most in the league to Golden State and have yielded at least 100 the last nine games. Their defense is atrocious, 24th in opponentsí shooting, last in steals.
Itís also a franchise that, historically, has had little patience with coaches as Sam Mitchell last season went 17 games into the season, three of the franchiseís six coaches didnít last two seasons and a fourth, Butch Carter, got just over two seasons and was fired after the teamís first ever playoff appearance and then best record ever. Of course, those were previous administrations.
Though there was some ďah haĒ when former Grizzlies coach Marc Iavaroni, a defensive specialist, was hired by his former boss in Phoenix, Bryan Colangelo, to be a Raptors assistant for coach Jay Triano. But this is Trianoís first full season, so you figure theyíd give him a chance.
The larger question for the Raptors is Chris Bosh, and whether itís time to try to make a major deal. The Raptorsí comment always has been if Bosh, one of the major free agents this summer, chooses to leave, heís best off with a Raptors sign and trade to make a probable maximum contract. Thatís likely true, though you also wonder if Toronto would look into a deal at some point to remake their team.