Jake Voshkul will be signed by the Raptors. Tyson Chandler is out with a stiff neck. There’s a pretty crazy rumour floating out there, it looks like BS but still…
99-91 NO Final: Too much Chris Paul setting up three point shooters: Rasual Butler with 16, James Posey with 20/10. David West outplays Chris Bosh yet again. Calderon had a nice 22/7 but not enough support from Kapono, Parker, Bargnani (eww) and Graham did us in. I thought we should’ve looked for JO much more than we did, he was 7-10 for 19 points and was getting good shots, unlike Bosh. The post-game report will be up late tonight or in the early morning. Box Score.
97-89 0:56 4Q: Kapono missed a clean look and a semi-contested look. Would’ve made it a four point game, Moon flies in for the rebound on the second miss, gets a foul to make it a 5 point game. Paul comes back and takes Jose to the rim to get it back upto 7 and then we see the worst thing ever: BOSH TAKING A THREE. WTF? Posey misses a three to give us a lifeline and Jose sets up Bosh nicely for two FTs. Triano takes out Kapono for Graham (he’s playing offense/defense) but it doesn’t help the defense as Chris Paul AGAIN sets up Butler for three who is lost by Parker and Bosh on the rotations, Butler with 16.
92-85 NO 2:55 4Q: Moon’s three off of a nice swing sequence rattles out, would’ve made it a three point game. On the next possession, Jose looks for Moon on the alley-oop but the pass isn’t right. Kapono leaves Butler AGAIN and he AGAIN drains a three. Bad, bad paint-to-perimeter close-outs. JO got a couple scores to keep us somewhat in it but we’re going to need to get some coontinuous stops and scores down the stretch, hasn’t happened yet in this game.
89-81 NO 5:58 4Q: Butler with a three as the shot-clock expires. That hurt. Peja loses Parker on a curl to drain a J and then Bosh gets blocked by ex-Raptor and Seth Rogen’s brother, Sean Marks. At least he went inside, on the next couple possessions he gets two FTs on Marks and a three point play on James Posey. Calderon hits a big three but Peja and Butler are getting their scores against Kapono and Parker. The stretch ends with Parker taking the same fadeaway Jordan took in his last All-Star game over Sean Marion. Difference is that he missed it. Badly. Bad shot.
80-72 Hornets 9:02 4Q: Roko starts the fourth with a bad three and another European carry. Funny play: Devin Brown misses a drive against Jose and falls down but still managed to get the rebound while sitting on his ass while JO and Bosh are standing around him. Raptors can’t score on the first five possessions of the fourth quarter. Neither can they but if there was ever an opportunity to make a run, this was it.
80-72 Hornets End 3Q: Four point swing to end the quarter. James Posey takes a charge on AP and then Posey sets up West for 2. David West – 27 points on 10-15 FG. Our defense is getting broken too easily and our offense is in a rut, the Hornets are laying off Joey Graham and forcing him to shoot. They’re sagging on Bosh and negating our screen action. This does not look good, Calderon’s doing his part against CP but the All-Star is causing too much secondary chaos with his dribble drives. We got to start playing inside-out again like we did in stretches of that first half. Go into Bosh and have him produce! We need to do with JO what they’re doing with West.
72-70 2:20 3Q: We’re not doing a good defensive job in transition or in the half-court. Dribble penetration is coming a little too easy for NO and they’re starting to find their rhythm through that. Chris Bosh made his most aggressive move of the afternoon with a drive against West which he made AS SOON AS HE CAUGHT IT. He needs to do that more often and not allow the defense to set properly, just like he did here. As soon as Bosh makes the FTs, CP3 beats everybody down the court and gets fouled. Yeeesh. Joey Graham finally got a move in and scores in the post after getting good position. The stretch ends with a bad call against the Raptors on a West drive. Bosh’s FT shooting is keeping us in the game, he’s 9-10. Elliote Freedman reports that Jake Voshkul will be signed by the Raptors.
68-62 4:30 3Q: New Orleans came out with more intensity to start off the half and had the lead up to 9 on a Rasual Butler jumper set up by CP3. Helter-skelter of a stretch, Posey with yet another three set up by CP3. Kapono was missing early but hit one late to snap out of it, Jose bailed out a stagnant offense with a three at one point. David West is producing for NO and Bosh isn’t for us, that’s basically the jist of it. We need to NOT leave Posey or Peja open, quite simple.
51-46 Hornets HT Did I say the Raptors weren’t settling for jumpers? All they did was take jumpers in this stretch, Bosh gets the ball and is a bit confused as to what to do with it. The Hornets are showing double and Bosh is responding by either taking the jumper (after wasting 5 seconds) or kicking out without attracting the double any further. The result is a semi-contested shot since the doubler wasn’t committed to Bosh. He’s 2-10 FG so far. CP3 is getting more and more drive ‘n kick opportunities and the shooters are making the Raptors pay, they hit 8 threes in the half. Jamario Moon is late on basically every rotation in the second half and isn’t helping the offense by taking too many jumpers without looking for other options. Swing the ball champ! 13 pts, 2 assists for JC. 6pts and 4 asts for CP.
44-44 3:11 2Q: This stretch is all about Posey. Parker trips and doesn’t rotate to Posey who drains his third three of the game. JO turns the ball over on a travel (suspect call), starts complaining as his man beats JO down the floor and draws the foul. Jose with a beautiful drive ‘n kick against CP3 which sets up Parker for three. On the next possession, CP3 falls down on the PNR and Calderon drains another jumper. NO go back to their surefire thing, David West, who gets two. Raptors go back to Bosh in the post who draws the foul, Raptors aren’t settling for jumpers in the game, they’re looking for Bosh and JO instead. Working the rock inside-out. Our defense is all about switch and recover and so far whoever’s switching on Posey sin’t realizing his shooting, he drains his fourth three of the game. CP3 blows by Jose for a layin on a super-crossover. Posey with yet another three as Parker/Bargnani fail to cover him on the break. Next update at halftime.
37-30 Raps 6:26 2Q: Bosh attracts double, JC drains three. We’re looking for the Bosh/Sean Marks matchup and its giving us good things so far. NO’s looking for the Marks/Parker “mismatch” and its not working out for them. CP3 goes to bench and Raptors go on an 11-3 run, a great baseline seals by Parker causes a turnover which we convert into FB points. Bosh dunks on a post-up as the defender flops. JC tweaked something, is limping around a little but he stays in the game.
30-28 NO 8:36 2Q: Ukic turns the ball over (European carry). AP is back and gets burned for a 3pt play on a drive by Devin Brown. Moon chooses not to pass in the post and jacks up a jumper which is missed. JO’s not getting many touches in this game. Moon was late on a rotation again but luckily Brown missed. Joey Graham gets caught doubling and doesn’t get back to Posey, gets burned by him for another three. We get a score off an offensive rebound from Parker’s miss. Offense is definitely in a funk, Parker looks very shaky and CP3’s drive ‘n kicks are starting to cause some rotation confusion, especially on the weak side where the ball usually ends up when he drives.
24-22 Raps End 1Q Bargnani with a nice drive on Peja but then fails to check Posey on the perimeter who drains a three. Gotta read the scouting reports. The Raptors are in this game because of their rebounding. New Orleans hasn’t gotten a single offensive rebound and we’re winning the boards battle 14-9. David West is a problem with 9 points but O’Neal’s playing him as well as one can. Good offensive balance for us as all five starters have scored. CB4 with some nice hustle plays but is 0-5 so far. Hornets end the quarter on a 9-3 run.
21-18 Raps 1:50 1Q: Bosh with a couple hustle plays, one of them led to a JK three. Crowd responded. Moon’s missed his last couple rotations and got burned by Peja for a three. Bargnani checks in and takes a quick threee shots: 1-3. Gets stripped and NO scores on the break. Hornets upping their defense and missing some open shots. Raps offense not looking the smoothest right now but there is movement which is always good. Ukic looking to drive ‘n kick, didn’t lead to any points but the idea is good. We’re doing a good job of cleaning the glass.
14-11 Raps 5:18: Raptors start off playing some good defense and cutting off CP’s options after the screen is set. David West got a couple hoops by we’ve been able to make him shoot from the perimeter – 3 missed jumpers. Hornets conceding the mid-range jumper to Moon who makes one and misses one. So far I count only two uncontested shots, a three made by Butler and a three missed by Peja. Slow Sunday start to this game, crowd seems dead. Bargnani and Roko Ukic are about to come in, Ukic because JC has picked up two early fouls, one because he was trying to stop the play after Bosh stumbled.
In the pre-game warmups Leo Rautins is doing out of his way to compare Jose Calderon and Chris Paul.