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Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Living in a van down by the river
Daily Raptors Dish - 13.11.09
No rest for Raps
Raptors release Douby
You might have thought a plane full of injured, wealthy individuals leaving Canada for the U.S. was some kind of commentary against socialized medicine. It wasn't.
The Raptors practised at the Air Canada Centre yesterday -- sort of -- and then departed on a four-game road trip that begins tonight in Los Angeles against that city's uglier, less talented basketball team, the Clippers. But if head coach Jay Triano had his way, his players would not have boarded the five-to-six hour flight. Instead, he would have locked them up in the trainer's room.
The Raptors departed for Los Angeles with a worrisome number of "banged up" players -- mainly the result of the team's hard-fought 99-89 victory over the Chicago Bulls at the Air Canada Centre on Wednesday. Triano's club is so battered and bruised, yesterday's practice featured all of nine players, and even then it was cut short.
"(Hedo Turkoglu) couldn't go 100%. (Andrea) Bargnani couldn't go 100%. (Chris) Bosh couldn't go 100%, (Jose) Calderon couldn't go, (Antoine) Wright couldn't go. But the coaching staff was intact," Triano said with a laugh, when asked about his roster.
Throw in the fact that forward Reggie Evans is still out with a left midfoot sprain, and the Raptors face the 3-6 Clippers with one hand tied behind their backs, though Triano is hopeful nobody actually misses tonight's game, other than Evans.
Perkins: Raptors need Evans on the court
The Raptors released guard Quincy Douby yesterday, opening a roster spot for a possible future acquisition. The fourth-year NBA veteran had been on the inactive list since October 28 and did not appear in any regular-season games.
Raptors line up to get aches, pains treated
He is a naturally ebullient guy and when that trait collides with cabin fever, emotions erupt.
"You got to. Every now and then, your teammates need a lift. They need that voice in their ear. I think my teammates respect me, because they know what I say is always in a positive way. I don't say things in a negative way and now, I think sometimes they're looking to me to say something."
Evans remembered he missed 10 games, in his rookie year with Seattle in 2002, and even though a rookie is supposed to be seen and not heard, the other players surely heard him.
"I spoke up. I'm a man. I still voiced my opinion, rookie or not. When you go out there and play hard and give it your all, you can be there from a motivation standpoint, even as a rookie."
Triano said he doesn't mind having this new assistant coach, but he'd rather have the player.
"His enthusiasm just shows the way he feels about his teammates and the game and I love how he shows it," Triano said. "This guy is all about defence and rebounding, which is just what we need, and we can't wait to get him back in that role."
Evans said he never gave a minute's thought to being a coach, but all this sideline time gave even his mother pause.
"Funny, but since I've been hurt, people are asking me about coaching. Even my mom asked me if I wanted to be a coach. I never thought that even once, but now, who knows? I can't tell the future, but maybe some day I'll want to be a coach in the NBA."
Raptors Blog by Doug Smith
"It isn't ideal, to get on an airplane for a long flight, with the swelling (flights can bring). But it is what it is. We can't control the schedule, or the travel.
"You kind of hope one day (of treatment) is enough."
Chris Kaman has a virus, not flu
So, Quincy’s gone and I can’t say I’m at all surprised.
They waived him yesterday for a couple of reasons I’ve pointed out but that can probably be repeated again.
The move might save them about $600,000, which isn’t a lot of cake on a team with a payroll of about $67 million but it does get them further below the tax level – about $1.8 million in rough figures – and that can’t hurt if they want to do something later on in the year.
And, because they sent money out in a couple of summer time moves – money that doesn’t count against the tax but money that comes out of Bryan’s overall budget -- more than half a million in savings won’t be sneezed at by the higher-ups who have the key to the Maple Leaf Sports money-printing machine.
Also, if creates some roster flexibility because Toronto’s now at 14 players and if Bryan ever wanted to do a one-for-two deal or simply add a body if, say, injuries pop up, he can.
But, I warn you of this: I have it on serious authority that there are no moves planned at the moment. They didn’t do this so they could go and get a specific guy right away (and that means all you ‘go get Allen Iverson’ zanies can stand down), they did it for future possibilities.
Now, Quincy is a very nice, quiet young man that the coaches loved and wanted to keep but Bryan won this discussion. And it may pay off down the road.
Clippers vs. Raptors
Under doctor's orders, Chris Kaman stayed away from his teammates Thursday.
Nothing against the Clippers' leading scorer, but that may have been the best call of the week. Kaman is suffering from a virus -- not flu, the team says -- and the last thing they need is for what he has to go spreading through the squad.
It's not a good thing if their numbers continue to hover around 10 and 11 players, at practice, and especially with a three-game trip coming up, starting at Oklahoma City on Sunday.
First, though, is tonight against Toronto. The Clippers are hopeful that Kaman will be back against the Raptors.
The Toronto Raptors are a .500 team so far, but following their second-half performance Wednesday, coach Jay Triano feels they can be much better.
The Raptors open a four-game western swing Friday night, when they look for their fourth straight win visiting the Los Angeles Clippers.
Toronto (4-4) avoided a third straight loss Wednesday with a 99-89 victory over Chicago. After getting outrebounded by 10 in the first half, the Raptors held a 11-rebound edge in the final 24 minutes while outscoring the Bulls 46-29.
"If we play like that half the time, we're going to be a .500 team. If we play like that all the time, we have a chance to be really good," said Triano, whose team is among the league's worst with 40.1 rebounds per game. "Effort is something that should be a constant in this game."
Rookie guard DeMar DeRozan gave the Raptors a huge lift with season highs of nine points and nine rebounds - seven of those coming in the third quarter.
"He chased balls, rebounded and was aggressive," Triano said. "I thought he had one of his best games as a pro."
DeRozan, a native of Compton, Calif., returns to Los Angeles for the first time as a pro after averaging 13.9 points and 5.7 rebounds as a freshman at USC last season.
Forward Chris Bosh, who leads the Raptors with 28.9 points and 11.5 rebounds, looks for another big game while visiting the Clippers after scoring 31 points and grabbing seven rebounds in a 97-75 win at Staples Center on Dec. 22.
Toronto has won three straight in Los Angeles in this matchup since a 103-100 loss on Nov. 23, 2005.
The Raptors will try extend that run as they face a Clippers team that's dropped two straight following a three-game winning streak.
Sunshine Girl - 13.11.09