landry fields forever
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Living in a van down by the river
Daily Raptor Dish - 24.03.11
Suns just too strong for Raptors
Vince is a shadow of his former self
The law of averages will one day reward the Raptors.
One day Toronto’s hoopsters will beat the Suns.
Eventually, enough stops will be made and enough shots will drop.
And eventually, Steve Nash will hang up his hightops for good.
But until Nash retires or until he decides a new basketball home is necessary, the Raptors can’t beat the Suns, plain and simple.
For the 14th time in a row, the Raptors succumbed to the Suns, who have yet to lose to Toronto at home since Nash’s arrival seven years ago.
The latest setback was a 114-106 defeat in a game the Raptors should have won had they defended the three-point line.
Will Barbosa be here next season? Let's hope so
Vince Carter entered the NBA’s stage in the shadows of a work stoppage.
He’ll soon enter free agency under the same labour cloud.
In 1998, the Raptors became relevant with Carter as the cornerstone piece once the NBA and its player’ union struck a deal that featured a 30-game schedule.
Carter has now become borderline irrelevant, his game almost as messed up as the system that runs the business of basketball.
When he becomes a free agent, regardless of the system that’s in place, it’s anyone’s guess where Carter ends up playing.
His scoring at a career low, his three-point shooting at a career low, Carter may be best suited as a role player coming off the bench next season.
In Tuesday’s marathon thriller in L.A. against the Lakers, Carter missed 11 of his three-point attempts, went only 7-of-23 from the field and would post three rebounds in 40 minutes in Phoenix’s devastating 139-137 triple-OT loss.
Carter could have won the game, but an open look wouldn’t drop.
Raptors show they lack ‘basketball smarts’ in loss to Suns
“I don’t know what I’m going to do,’’ Barbosa said as he made his return to the desert for the first time since his trade to Toronto.
“Nobody knows if things will be changed. No one can expect anything. I enjoy Toronto and I enjoy the team. It’s too bad we’ve been losing a lot.
“If I come back to Toronto, I know I will do better. I will do my best.”
When the Raptors close out their five-game trip in Los Angeles on Saturday, Barbosa plans to meet with his representative, Sam Goldfeder.
It’s tough enough to entice players to Toronto, but when someone of Barbosa’s background comes along you want to keep him, make him feel part of the team and eliminate any doubt.
For now and for the foreseeable future, all there is with the Raptors is doubt and questions that will likely remain unanswered well into the summer.
Regardless of what happens in the future, Barbosa understands more than anyone the business of basketball.
It was business that forced the Suns to peddle him, but it was deeply personal when Barbosa returned to the place he called his basketball home for seven years.
When he stepped off the team bus and began to make his way to the court, an arena employee was waiting for Barbosa in the hallway.
“It was emotional for me,’’ the Brazilian Blur said. “I was a little sad. Like I said to him, it’s a business and I’m in a different situation.
“I’m happy to here in the desert, seeing the people I worked with and seeing the purple and orange.”
On Tuesday, an off day for the Raptors after they got drilled in Denver, Barbosa drove to nearby Mesa, where he had started to build a house before selling it.
“I just wanted to see how it was finished after I sold it to the guy,’’ Barbosa recounted. “It’s pretty, man, very pretty. That really made me emotional.
“The market is not good. It was a good thing for me to sell, even though I wasn’t expecting to get traded. It was a good feeling to see the house finished.”
Whether Barbosa will be finished as a Raptor after one season, only time will tell.
Raptors Blog by Doug Smith
“The energy and the effort is there,” the coach said. “The basketball smarts has to keep improving.”
Triano had just watched his young team cough up another tough loss, going down 114-106 to the Phoenix Suns and it was a defeat achieved in much the same manner as so many others this season.
The Raptors played hard and for long stretches they played well. They fought an older, wiser, more successful team as well as they possibly could — but when it came to crunch time, they made just the wrong play at precisely the wrong time.
They missed shots and became stagnant on offence, they let noted three-point specialist Channing Frye hit a couple of huge buckets and they watched as Steve Nash worked his fourth-quarter magic to pull out a game in which Toronto led by six with 4 1/2 minutes to go.
“Nobody likes to lose, nobody’s happy about losing games right now but we’re learning to play for longer periods of time,” said Triano. “I thought we played a pretty decent game for the most part tonight.
“I thought tonight was pretty good for a lot our guys. In the fourth quarter, we didn’t finish the way we want to. I thought we tried, we went to the basket … it’s tough.”
Aaron Brooks sparks Suns to win over Raptors
Is he back?
Probably not, but that was the most active I’ve seen Ed Davis in the last couple of weeks, especially in the fourth quarter when he was able to find space in the Suns zone and had a couple of big buckets off great passes from Bargnani and Calderon.
Davis ended up with eight rebounds – the most he’s had in about five games – and he was far more into the fray than he’d been.
Who knows, it might translate into more playing time each night and the people who are shocked he’s not playing more simply because it’s that time of year will take it easy.
The Raptors know he’s a longer term piece than, say, Reggie Evans but they also know he’s got to play well to get some time and, before last night, he hadn’t been.
Burnt-out Suns rally to sink Raptors
Aaron Brooks energized a tired, ailing Phoenix Suns team with 25 points, and the Phoenix Suns rallied from a 13-point third-quarter deficit to beat the Toronto Raptors 114-106 Wednesday night.
Brooks hit the biggest shot of the game, a 3-pointer from the left corner with 54.9 seconds left to play that gave the Suns a 110-105 lead. It came after Phoenix grabbed the lead for good with 2:14 left, on a Jared Dudley's 3-pointer.
The Suns, playing the second of back-to-back set games only about 20 hours after a triple-overtime road loss to the Los Angeles Lakers, struggled with their shooting until late in the game and played shorthanded throughout.
Starting guard Grant Hill left the game midway through the first quarter with flu-like symptoms and reserve forward Mickael Pietrus played two minutes and 24 seconds of the first before leaving with a sprained right knee.
Neither player returned, and the Suns missed their best defensive player in Hill. But the Raptors hit a cold spell in the second half with their shooting that allowed the Suns back into the game.
Andrea Bargnani scored 27 points and DeMar DeRozan added 19 to lead the Raptors.
Channing Frye’s 3-pointer with eight minutes to play gave the Suns a 93-92 lead.
The Raptors’ Jose Calderon threw an alley-oop assist to forward Ed Davis for a dunk three seconds before halftime to give Toronto a 61-55 lead at the intermission.
The Raptors began the second half just how they ended the first, with Calderon lobbing to DeRozan for a dunk. Bargnani’s three at the 4:34 mark of the third quarter gave the Raptors their biggest lead of the night, 82-69.
The Suns rallied behind Brooks, who scored the team’s final nine points of the third quarter, including a layup off a steal just before buzzer that tied the score at 86 going into the fourth.