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Join Date: May 2008
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Raptors Daily Dish: 04-10-12
Some of these are from yesterday but i didn't see them posted. I thought that if we had any news from training camp or anything Raptor related today we can post it in here.
Raptors rookie Terrence Ross turning bashers into fans | Raptors
HALIFAX - It’s one of those little wonders of the world wide web.
In a little more than three months, the Raptors selection of Terrence Ross with the eighth overall pick in the 2012 NBA draft has gone from “What were they thinking?” to “I really like his potential.”
The draft boards and fan chat sites on draft night were rife with disenchantment. Why didn’t they take Austin Rivers? Who is Terrence Ross? Why didn’t we at least trade down to get him?”
But somehow, without Ross playing a single game, suiting up for maybe a handful of scrimmages and, as of this morning, four NBA practices, the tune has changed — not completely mind you but enough to be noticeable.
We can speculate how something like that happens. People start buying in as the team rationalizes the pick. Or the public educates itself about the player and finds there’s a lot to like about him.
Not that those among the Raptors decision makers concerned themselves too much with the public’s reaction.
From the moment they made the pick and through the early negative fallout, Bryan Colangelo and his staff knew they had done their homework and if John Hollinger had Ross rated No. 27 or Chad Ford rated him the 11th best pick, what mattered was Ross was the best player available on their own board.
And nothing since has made them second guess that.
That said, Ross is very much aware of what is in front of him.
He doesn’t have to look far to see the equally highly drafted DeMar DeRozan, who currently holds the bulk of the minutes at the shooting guard spot.
“(DeMar) is still our starting two,” head coach Dwane Casey said following a morning practice on Wednesday. “Nobody has emerged over him. Terrence is doing a good job of working him, but DeMar is an experienced player and he is using it.”
Ross, while lacking that experience, does have experience of another sort.
When he joined the University of Washington Huskies, Ross was buried on the depth chart.
| Sports | Toronto Sun
Dwane Casey wants Raptors? offence running on all cylinders - thestar.com
HALIFAX—For all the significant strides they made defensively last season, the Raptors need to find more ways to create offence this year and coach Dwane Casey knows pretty much where to look.
Vowing his team will try to speed up the game — while not losing its focus on defence — Casey plans to take the reins off, a most welcome decision to players who like to get out and go.
“No, we’re not going to walk the ball up this year,” said new point guard Kyle Lowry after the team went through its first practice here Tuesday. “That’s what coach is telling me and what we’re implementing so far.
“We’re not walking it up.”
The Raptors were forced to try and “control tempo” last season — a polite way of saying ‘we’re not good enough to stay in games on the strength of offence alone’ — but coach Casey says those days are gone.
Now, almost every team in the NBA talks early in training camp about getting out and running a bit more, trying to score easy baskets in transition during the first few days of training camp but Casey has made it his mantra since the middle of the summer.
And he has a specific plan to get that done.
“Specifically, we want to run the floor to try to get layups first; we have to do a better job of running the floor instead of walking it up,” he said.
“Second, we have to utilize the three: Andrea (Bargnani), (Linas) Kleiza, John Lucas, Kyle Lowry, we have some really good three-point shooters, Landry Fields, so that’s where we intend to get our output up.
“(And) DeMar has to do a better job of getting to the rim and finishing instead of settling for one of the toughest shots in basketball, which is the in-between two. By recognizing those things and taking advantage of them I feel like that’s where we’re going to get our points output up.”
There is no doubt the Raptors need to juice an offence that was 28th in the league in points per game last season, averaging just 90.7 per night. They were 28th of 30 teams in fast-break points, averaging only 9.6 per game, they were 23rd in turning turnovers into baskets (15 points per game) and 19th in three-point field goal percentage.
Raptors? big men Amir Johnson, Ed Davis battling for minutes in crowded frontcourt - thestar.com
HALIFAX—There has never been a clear-cut winner in the competition between Raptors big man Ed Davis and Amir Johnson, each possesses attributes that should keep them in the rotation and neither has emerged decidedly better than the other in the two seasons they’ve been teammates.
One may never end up being substantially better but in what’s looking like a crowded frontcourt for the coming season, coach Dwane Casey may have to ultimately decide on one over the other.
“There’s going to be nights when one guy is going to be more important than the other,” Casey said after his team went through its first training camp workout here Tuesday. “Maybe one night we may need a little bit more speed running the floor, the other night we may need shooting.
“There’s going to be competition between those two young men on any given night; again, I don’t think we’d be wrong by playing either one of them.”
But Casey also doesn’t want to crowd his rotation too much, he’d like to settle on eight, maybe nine players to count on every game and if one of the two could find a way to become clearly the better man, it’d make the coach’s job so much easier.
Given that Andrea Bargnani and Jonas Valanciunas are locked in to two spots in the frontcourt, and with Aaron Gray the most physical defender on the roster and with Linas Kleiza available to spend at least a little bit of time up front, there won’t be room for both Johnson and Davis on a regular basis.
“I would say that Ed is an excellent offensive rebounder, one of the best; he has a knack for being around the ball,” said Casey. “Amir has worked on his shot this summer, Amir’s one of our best rim-runners so he gives us that presence ... they both give us different things.”
Davis is fully aware that this, his first full training camp and pre-season in his third season in the league, will be hugely important.
“I look at it as more like me and Amir play good together, we both can run, we both rebound, jump, are athletic so we’re just going to fight hard and coach is going to put the right people on the floor. Everything is going to work out,” said Davis.
“Everybody wants to stay on the floor and compete but we have to do our part and whatever happens, happens. All you can do is work hard every day in practice, every drill, show the coaches you’re working hard and you’re in it for the right reason.”
Bargnani is ready to start fresh coming back from injury
HALIFAX -- Just a day after playing one of the best games of his life,
Andrea Bargnani's season that had held so much promise came to a screeching halt.
And some ways, the Toronto Raptors' campaign did too.
The Italian centre and team's leading scorer would go on to miss 35 games with a calf injury, spoiling a strong season for the big man and throwing a giant wrench into the Raptors' campaign.
After an off-season of rehab, Bargnani is keen for a fresh start.
"Yeah, for sure it's a long time for me (since he last played). I don't remember another time when I was so many days without playing games," Bargnani said Wednesday.
Bargnani lit up the scoreboard on Jan. 24 against Phoenix, scoring 36 points -- 18 in the third quarter alone -- and shooting a perfect 12-for-12 from the free throw line in Toronto's first win over the Suns in eight years.
It was his first game back from a calf injury that kept him out six games and that he thought was ancient history.
But just a night later at Sacramento, he pulled it again.
"The second time when I got hurt I realized right away it was pretty bad," Bargnani said. "I realized right away it was not going to be two or three weeks."
The Raptors' No. 1 draft pick in 2006 was having a career year. For a guy with the reputation as being a soft player, his attention to the defensive side of the game under new coach Dwane Casey was dramatic and impressive.
"Last year, definitely," Bargnani said, when asked if last season was the best basketball he's played. "Not much for the offence because I always play good in the offence, but I was playing very good on defence, that's why it was the best."
Sunshine Girl: Colette
RF Girl: Genevieve Morton
RF Hunk of the day: Robert Downey Jr.
Last edited by jeffb; 10-04-2012 at 09:55 AM.