Something just doesn’t seem right about having the Raptors and Knicks play on a Saturday afternoon. I feel like I am in some sort of Twilight Zone…but, er…just not in the twilight.
So the suddenly hot Raptors come up against the suddenly cold Knicks, who have lost nine of their last ten games. There are a lot of different reasons why a team could lost 9 out of 10, but I think when you have a coach like D’Antoni who brings a certain running style to a new team, there is the chance that all of the running might catch up with a team that isn’t used to it. What is already a long season turns into an incredibly long season when you have to play an up-tempo style and haven’t been playing with any style in a long time.
The Knicks are also coming up against some injuries, which has definitely played a role in their sub-par play of late. Eddy Curry might not play against the Raptors, which may end up being a good thing for the Knicks since Curry wasn’t so big on running the floor in the first place.
At this point in the season, you have to ask yourself, “What do I expect or want from the Raptors by the end of the season?” I’m not saying that this is a question that I think will bring answers, but should generate some thought. Once you start thinking about things, it never comes out naturally anymore.
3 in the Key
1. Exploit the fact that Eddy Curry may not be in the lineup.? He likes to get a little rough, so if he isn’t in the lineup, the Raptors may be able to take advantage here.
2. Calderon will need to continue his strong play and show that he does have a well rounded game.? He will need to control the pace of the game.
3. This ties into point 2, but it is going to be important for the Raptors as a team not to fall into whatever speed the Knicks want to play at.? If you are able to slow the Knicks down, the results usually end up in your favour.