Game 32: Raps vs. Nuggets – Pre-game

Well, the Raptors must be happy to be back from their 2-4 road trip, but then again, it’s not the ACC has been home sweet home this season…and they’re coming home to face the Nuggets, who clearly aren’t as hot as they were a few weeks ago, but are still miles ahead of where the Raptors are right now.

The last time the Raptors squared off against the Nuggets, I can’t remember what happened.  For some reason, I don’t even recall the Raptors playing a game against the Nugg…ack…ARGH…ACK!  Oh wait, it’s coming back. 132-93…changes made…pain and embarrassment…

So let’s call that last game a throwaway game.  A burn the tape game.  There’s absolutely no point in watching that video and trying to take anything from it, because the whole game from every standpoint was an absolute disaster. 

The Nuggets are coming off a loss to the Hawks, where they showed a lack of energy in the second half that was, well, Rapthorrific.  The Nuggets only managed to score 38 points in the second half, looking confused on tired, which can only provide the Raptors and their fans with some hope going into tonight’s matchup.  The last thing you want to do after getting skunked and laying an egg in the second half is to get on a plane and head to another hotel.  Then again, they’re coming to face the Raps, so maybe they’re completely giddy.

The Raptors can hope that Nene stays out of the lineup with his sore neck (listed as a “Cervical Strain” which sounds frightening), because they certainly don’t do well with energetic big guys.   Then again, we just might see a career night from Chris Andersen.  That would fit well with how things have been going for the Raptors lately.

But with Nene out of the lineup, there is an opportunity for the Raptors to make some inroads with Bosh and JO (who will hopefully be back from flu symptoms…which I think might mean that he had a case of the trots…just a guess).  The Raptors will need some help from AP, Kapono, Moon and Bargs, but the tone has to be set with the big guys inside.  It might even benefit the Raptors to have some minutes for Hump, just to remind the Nuggets that it’s going to be a little rough inside.  If it gets ugly late, watch out for The Executioner…or as I have taken to calling him, Jake “All 6” Voskuhl (who still isn’t listed in the directory…not a good omen dude). 

Here’s hoping Karl doesn’t get his 900th win in Toronto.

3 in the Key

1. Get on the boards. K-Mart isn’t going to be able to do it himself, so hopefully the Raptors can make some advances here.

2. Make your open looks.  The missed 3’s on wide open looks are killing the Raptors.  I hate relying on the 3-ball, but I guess you have to work with what you have and for the Raptors, their wing players are shooters.

3. Go right at K-Mart.  If you get him to take a couple of early fouls, they will be short and he will be upset.  It’s a good combo.

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The AltRaps Blog » Blog Archive » Toronto Raptors Linkage for December 30th through December 31st  on December 31st, 2008

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