Just got this from ESN Insider
Source: http://insider.espn.go.com/nba/story...et-investigateToronto Raptors: Unlike the five previous teams on this list, Toronto will not be in the playoffs. Nonetheless, the Raptors' reign as the league's most permissive defense appears to be over. Operating with basically the same players who finished last in defensive efficiency a season ago, new coach Dwane Casey has them in the middle of the pack at 15th. Yes, the early schedule has been soft, but for the Raptors to show any spine at all on D is hugely newsworthy -- and obviously speaks well for Casey.
The Raps have one other big surprise for us: the 3-point shooting of DeMar DeRozan. He made five triples all last season; he matched that total Wednesday night alone. For the season, he's 10-of-16 from long range, after going an abysmal 5-for-52 in 2010-11. Using the 3 to add some efficiency to his high-volume game increases his value dramatically; we'll be watching to see whether this is a fluke or something longer lived.
As with Minnesota, there is a giant chink in the armor -- the fact Rasual Butler has started six games at small forward says all you need to know about that position in Toronto. Nonetheless, the Jose Calderon-Andrea Bargnani pick-and-roll combo is clicking and the Raps are a surprising 3-3 with a positive scoring margin. Consider this the first baby step on the road back to respectability.