Game 44: Raps vs. Pistons – Pre-game

Well, if you call somebody out, in public, in front of the mics and cameras, you had better have a solid game next time out, because while the focus will be on the guy you called out, you will also have put the spotlight on yourself.

This is pretty much what Bosh can expect, the spotlight (however dull it might be…the Raptors are losers of six straight…this spotlight might have the equivalent wattage of the light bulb in an EasyBake Oven), yes, the spotlight will be on Bosh and Moon. Or Moon and Bosh. However you want to look at it, by letting Jamario know that his shot selection and his defence are lacking (seriously, when was the last time you heard a guy get called out on BOTH ends of the court?), Bosh needs to step up and show how it is done in this game. You can lead with your words any time you want, but the real leaders step up after that and lead by example. If the game comes down to a last second, hell, even last minute touch for Bosh, it better hadn’t be for 3.

Maybe Bosh’s whole strategy behind calling out Moon is that he just wants to create enough of a distraction from the team’s current losing streak so that they can focus on the task at hand while the media focuses on something other than them losing. It’s also a nice change to answer questions on calling somebody out than your standard “Is losing frustrating” line of questions that Bosh admittedly was growing tired of.

But, we can’t ignore that the Raptors are losers of six straight. We can’t ignore the fact that they regularly blow double digit leads. We can’t ignore the fact that in the last 2 minutes of games, they fall apart. It has all compounded into a mess that needs to be turned around not through just talking, but through the dedication required to make yourself and your team better. Each player on the Raptors roster (save for a couple) need to take a serious look at themselves and ask how they are contributing to the team.

Detroit might not be the same Detroit team there were in the past (they just broke a 5 game losing streak), but they’re no joke. They have seriously intimidating guard depth in Iverson, Stuckey and Hamilton. Prince and Wallace are putting up similarly strong numbers and Antonio McDyess is showing just how important rebounding is.

This is going to be tough, because the Raptors just don’t win in Detroit, but for the Raptors, things need to change. Let’s hope they can use the Obamamania to bring change for themselves…and a little Yes We Can to the court.

3 in the Key

1. If the Raptors can’t do a decent job rebounding, this game will be out of hand early.

2. Somebody is going to have to keep pace with Hamilton. He’s the hardest working guy in the league and he can just wear you out, so the Raptors will need to keep the legs fresh against him.

3. Get up and down the court. The Pistons have some quick guys, but they aren’t a quick team overall. There are opportunities to score if you can push the ball.


Doc  on January 21st, 2009

Moon most certainly better step up today. I’m hoping he took Bosh criticism to heart and bring it tonight.

Also regarding Rip, I read somewhere last night that for the remainder of the season Hamilton will be coming off the bench and not starting. Not sure what that’s about, but it’ll be interesting to see how he handles it.

Jay  on January 21st, 2009

From what I have read, Rip doesn’t really care whether he’s coming off the bench or starting…but then again, that’s what most guys say.

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