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Daily Raptors Dish - 7.1.12
Nets tear down Raptors
Why are Raptors fans hating on Humphries?
TORONTO - The Air Canada Centre crowd booed him, derided him with chants, and even waved a cut-out of his runaway bride Kim Kardashian. But New jersey forward Kris Humphries was undeterred, leading the Nets to a 97-85 victory over the Toronto Raptors.
Humphries, who played for the Raptors from 2006-09, was huge on the boards to pace the Nets, picking up 16 rebounds to go along with his six points. The only reason why he didn’t pick up a double-double was the fact that he went 2-for-8 from the free throw line.
Jersey out-rebounded Toronto 44-39.
“They came out with a mission and they jumped on us right away, and got it going,” said Raptors forward DeMar DeRozan, who struggled for most of the game and was sat down for most of the fourth quarter by Toronto coach Dwane Casey.
The loss was a tough one for the Raptors. Toronto held New jersey to under 39% shooting from the floor, but the Nets killed Toronto from three-point range, going 15-for-31.
‘NBA cool’ Raptors fall to rebound-hungry Nets
TORONTO - Toronto sports fans are notorious for booing players who once played for the Raptors, Maple Leafs or Blue Jays.
They’ve booed players for quitting on the team when they were in T.O., for fleeing as a free agent and for simply requesting a trade.
It seems it doesn’t matter what your excuse for leaving is. If you are a player of substance, and once played in Toronto, you’re probably going to get booed when you return the ACC or Rogers Centre.
But why Kris Humphries was booed on Friday night at was a bit of a mystery. Humphries played parts of three seasons with the Raptors and was neither loved nor hated. But his return as a member of the New jersey Nets was met with passionate boos and cat-calls.
Raptors guard DeMar DeRozan figures the hate is the result of the “Reality” show Humphries appeared, Keeping Up with the Kardashians, which stars his wayward wife, Kim Kardashian.
“With him and the show he had, a lot of people hate him or like him, or whatever,” said DeRozan. “But (the booing) was hilarious to me. It was entertaining.”
Humphries obviously didn’t let the cold reception at the ACC get him down on Friday night, as he picked up a game leading 16 rebounds to help the Nets down the Raptors 97-85.
Kris Humphries showered with boos and cheers by Toronto crowd
There were always going to be nights like this, where the Raptors just weren’t sharp, where they lacked laser-like focus, where they were a step slow and a second behind, and the challenge now is to use it as a learning opportunity.
Coach Dwane Casey is enough of a realist to realize things are going to happen over the course of an NBA season for a team that’s never really accomplished anything, and Friday night’s 97-85 drubbing at the hands of the New jersey Nets hammered that point home.
“This is a great lesson for us,” Casey said after Toronto fell to 3-4 on the season by losing to the 2-6 Nets before 16,771 at the Air Canada Centre.
“We were feeling good and happy on the farm and I thought New jersey did a great job coming in and playing like a desperate team and we did not.”
The Raptors lacked much of the effort and intensity they’d shown through six not-too-bad games to open the regular season. They were hammered on the glass (the Nets turned 13 offensive rebounds into 28 second chance points), they were slow to close out on shooters (New jersey was 15-31 from three-point range) and they were discombobulated on offence (just 19 assists on 33 made baskets).
Raptors wilt under Nets’ pressure
Even as a jilted ex-husband of a gaudy reality TV star, former Raptor Kris Humphries is a Toronto darling — sort of.
South of the border, the basketball court has become the stage of a modern-day morality play with fans pitilessly booing Humphries for his marriage to and consequent divorce from tabloid queen Kim Kardashian.
Toronto was (predictably) friendlier, giving the starter a mixed reception with equal jeers and cheers.
Yet the New jersey Nets power forward couldn’t escape his ex. About 10 minutes into the second quarter, a group of men in the fourth row held up huge signs bearing the faces of the Kardashian women.
“It’s just to rattle him a little,” said one of the sign bearers, who wished to remain anonymous for “obvious reasons.”
The men didn’t get much mileage out of their signs, which were confiscated by ACC staff for being malicious.
But some fans say they want to express themselves freely when they come to a game.
“It’s a fan’s constitutional right to boo,” said Dan Gosselin, an investment banker sitting in the first row behind the Nets’ bench.
People tweeting during the game were divided on Humphries — is he dumb and annoying or adorable and down to earth? — but the fans in the ACC weren’t.
“I can’t believe they aren’t chirping him more,” said Preston Legget, a construction worker.
Raptors look ugly in loss to Nets
“Desperate” is a tough word, says Toronto Raptors head coach Dwane Casey.
But it may not be a big enough word describe the gulf between the Raptors and respectability as the franchise tries to become an NBA contender.
The Raptors matched a season low in points last night as they fell 97-85 to the New jersey Nets. They kept alive their string of good defensive play, holding the Nets -- who won only their second game -- to 38.8 per cent in field goals. But Toronto fell apart on the long three-pointers, allowing 15 of 31 (about half the New jersey field goals) and showed little grit in the paint where the Nets outscored Toronto 28 to eight in second-chance points.
Toronto Raptors’ Ed Davis learning to earn minutes
“Somebody asked, ‘Should we beat the teams that we should beat.’ There’s nobody in this league that can’t beat anybody. We’ve got to approach it like we’re the desperate team each and every night,” Casey said. “This is a great lesson for us. I thought we were feeling good and happy on the farm. I thought New jersey did a great job of playing like a desperate team, and we did not.
“Desperate may be a tough word. Hungry, underdog mentality, whatever you want to call it.”
Whatever the word, the Raptors did not have it.
The statistics say that the Raptors held the Nets to 39% shooting, but it was far from a convincing performance. The Raptors were often beaten off of the dribble, meaning the big men often had to slide over to help. That led to a plethora of offensive rebounds (13) and three-pointers (15) for the Nets.
Things were not much better on the other side of the ball. Andrea Bargnani scored eight quick points in the first quarter and then faded from view. DeMar DeRozan was worse, scoring just three points. Casey yanked him in the fourth quarter, looking to Gary Forbes to spark the team. That move, like all of Casey’s others on Friday, failed.
On Wednesday morning, Ed Davis got the NBA version of a call to the principal’s office.
Toronto Raptors head coach Dwane Casey wanted to see him. The reason was pretty obvious: During the Raptors’ three-game road trip that took the team through Dallas, Orlando and New York, Davis had totalled just eight points and eight rebounds. Accordingly, he played less than 20 minutes in each game, losing minutes to, among others, Jamaal Magloire, the veteran brought in as a security blanket more than anything.
This was not the way the promising sophomore’s year was supposed to start. Davis was supposed to pick up where his rookie season left off — when he averaged a double-double when his minutes were pro-rated to 36 per game.