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Old 02-20-2008, 09:06 AM   #1 (permalink)
Dr. J. Naismith
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Post Today in Raptorland - 2/20/08

Deals or no deals

Raptors general manager Bryan Colangelo would love to make a move for a bruising big man, but with just little-used forward Joey Graham and the expiring contracts of Juan Dixon ($2.55 million US), Carlos Delfino ($1.868 million), who the club would like to keep, and Darrick Martin ($770,610) up for grabs, the Raptors will be in tough to do anything of substance.
Raps have plan for Superman

Bosh will start the game matched up against Howard.

"We're definitely going to have to pay a lot of attention to him,'' Bosh said. "He's very strong inside.

"I'm going to let him know early in the game that I got him, but I can't guard him by myself."
Ford looks doubtful

A no-show at yesterday's practice, it looks as though T.J. Ford will be a no-go for tonight's matchup against the Orlando Magic.

The company line with the Raptors is that Ford's status will be determined at game time, but the more time Ford misses the tighter the fragile label grows around the lightning-quick point guard.
Hoops MVP dies

Shannon Veal stepped to the foul line, steadied herself and sank two free throws. Then she signaled that she needed a breather.

Before her coach could replace her, the 17-year-old Louisiana high school star collapsed and died.
NBA game heading outside

The Phoenix Suns and Denver Nuggets will play the first outdoor game in modern NBA history during the 2008-09 pre-season.

The exhibition game on Oct. 11 at the 16,000-seat Indian Wells Tennis Garden will be televised by TNT.

The game follows the NHL's successful outdoor game on New Year's Day in Buffalo, N.Y.

Raptors would be wise to invest in an insurance policy for Ford

"A pulled abdominal? I mean, he turned the wrong way," said Mitchell. "That can happen to you when you get out of bed tomorrow."

Mitchell glimpsed at one of the physical specimens slouching before him, a typist from the shallow end of the athletic gene pool.

"Well, probably not you, as non-athletic as you are ... but maybe when you have to reach too far for that beer across the bar – ahh!"

Only Raptors TV will do a Full Court Press on trade deadline day

But given that major trades already have been made and the Raptors are not expected to be active, the NBA deadline will continue to be a minor event in Canadian sports TV.

The exception is Raptors NBA TV, which will air hourly updates and a live Full Court Press deadline show at 2 p.m. EST.

There will be additional trade information on Raptors Today at 6 p.m. Raptors NBA TV will also pick up TNT's trade deadline recap later in the evening.
Raptors work around Ford's latest injury

“Players get hurt,” Mitchell said. “Me being disappointed or how I feel is not going to change the fact that T.J. missed practice [Tuesday], but we'll see how he feels [today]. T.J. just said he's sore and can't practise. The game is going to come regardless, and there's nothing I can do about it anyway.”
Winning nine of the next 11 would give the Raptors a 37-29 record and at least a chance of matching or surpassing their 47-35 record from last season. More important, some wins now would provide a cushion should the Raptors fall on hard times in March, when they will play 10 of their 17 games on the road, including a five-game road swing in the West, where the average winning percentage of their opponents is .599.
Who's next and who's left to make deals in NBA?

They have until Thursday afternoon to decide, and with nine teams separated by fewer than five games in the standings, standing pat could mean standing still.

"We've never had a race that close at this point in the season," said commissioner David Stern. "The trades seem to have piqued interest."

Raptors may face trouble at the point

In the years to come, when this team is building towards serious contention, can the Raptors afford to keep both their point guards? Can they afford to keep both Ford and Jose Calderon?
Financially, of course, Toronto can afford it. General manager Bryan Colangelo has already sent signals to his fellow GMs that Toronto will match any offer that Calderon receives as a restricted free agent this summer, and he means it.
Raptors likely to be quiet at trade deadline

In an interesting potential twist, Martin would have the same right to veto a trade as Devean George did in the original Jason Kidd trade. Martin, playing on a one-year contract and having been with the Raptors for the last three years, will be eligible to gain his so-called Larry Bird rights after the season. Players with Bird rights - which allows a player's own team to exceed the salary cap to re-sign him as a free agent - can veto any trade because that exemption is lost when he moves to the new team.


Raptors said to be shopping Jason Kapono. They'll even throw in the red, white and blue bonus ball for free.

With Kidd Now Gone, Is Carter Next?

Then, dare I say it, there's Toronto. While most Raptors fans would welcome Carter's return like it was a recurrence of chlamydia, the numbers and needs match. Toronto needs a dynamic wing scorer like Carter, and the Raptors can dump the contracts of Rasho Nesterovic, Juan Dixon, and Joey Graham while throwing in a first-rounder for their troubles.

Catching Up With Joey Graham

Joey Graham, the former Brandon High standout who led the program to the Class 5A state championship game in 2000, is in his third season with the NBA's Toronto Raptors. He averages 3.9 points and 2.0 rebounds per game for the Raptors (28-23), who are fifth in the Eastern Conference standings

Orlando Magic break Detroit Piston's 10-game win streak

Bullied for so long by the Pistons, the Magic silenced the familiar hecklers among the stunned sell-out crowd of 22,076 at The Palace of Auburn Hills.
Sunshine Girl - 2/20/08

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