Today in Raptorland - 07.11.09
Old 11-07-2009, 11:14 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Today in Raptorland - 07.11.09

Raps defence puts brakes on Paul

A team-high 21 points and 18 assists is a good night at any level, but last night those numbers belonging to New Orleans' Chris Paul were actually good for the visiting Raptors.

Paul, who came in averaging 30 points and just over eight assists a game, came out firing last night and appeared to be on his way to another top effort when he took a 17-point, 10-assist line to the locker room at halftime.

But some key adjustments by the Raptors saw the visitors hold Paul scoreless for the third quarter and limit him to just three assists as they took over the game.

Ask Raptors head coach Jay Triano and it took a consummate team effort to pull it off

Calderon leads the charge

In the midst of Jose Calderon's slow start to the season, Jay Triano had heard enough of the second guessing.

Following an up-tempo Saturday afternoon practice recently, question No. 2,000 about Calderon's laboured start left Triano shaking his head. With a pained expression Triano pointed out: "It's not as if he woke up this morning and became a bad player."

Last night in the Big Easy, in Game 5 of an 82-game season, Calderon didn't need anyone to defend his abilities. They were in full view on the court.

With even the most faithful of Raptor followers predicting a long night with a red-hot Chris Paul lying in wait for Calderon and the Raptors' much-maligned defence, the wee Spaniard had plans of his own as he sparked the Raptors to their first road win of the season in a 107-90 victory over the 2-4 Hornets.

It was Calderon who got the Raptors, 3-2, going early in the third quarter on a hustle play that left Paul the runner-up for a change.

Raps Replay


Not that it means his return is imminent, but Reggie Evans, still out with a left midfoot sprain, is travelling with the team on this three-game road swing. The Raptors have not had injured players travelling with the team unless there is a chance that they could play. Evans is with them in order to get the foot that has given him problems re-evaluated. Head coach Jay Triano also wants him getting used to travelling with the team. Evans says there is still pain in the foot, but he's doing some shooting now, minus the jumping part.

Sharp-shooting Raptors fly past Hornets

For 12 minutes they were as good as they can be right now, efficient on offence, solid on defence, and if there's a sign the Raptors are on the right course, it came in the third quarter Friday night.

Blistering the New Orleans Hornets with an awesome shooting display and holding Chris Paul in check in the second half, Toronto put on a 34-14 blitz in the third frame that led them to a 107-90 victory in front of 15,010 fans.

The Raptors made eight three-pointers in the decisive third - a single-quarter franchise record - and held New Orleans to 5-for-17 shooting from the field. In all, the Raptors shot a remarkable 14-for-29 from three-point range.

Raptors' fiery Jose Calderon silences critics

Jose Calderon knows what was being written and what was being said and what was being suggested.

And as the Raptors' point guard pumped his fists and let out a primal scream and showed more outward emotion than he usually does, he was striking out not just at the New Orleans Hornets on Friday night but at the circumstances over the past week and a half that had led to so many questions.

He was angry, at himself and the spot he found himself in, and he took it out on the Hornets.

Bosh and Raptors sting Hornets

The first half was the “Paul and Bosh Show” as two of the NBA's five leading scorers went back and forth. Paul hit 6 of 8 shots, scored 17 points and had 10 assists. Bosh went 5 for 5 from the field and 6 of 7 from the line, leading Toronto with 16 points.

Paul scored seven points in less than 2 minutes as the Hornets went ahead 33-26. Bosh responded with eight quick points to give the Raptors a 46-43 lead.

The second half was a different story.

With the threat of Bosh inside, the Hornets repeatedly failed to close out on the Raptors

3-point shooters. Bargnani had a game-high nine rebounds, but the Hornets did not have much chance to grab defensive rebounds as shot after shot fell for the Raptors in the second half.

Bosh leads Raptors in 107-90 win over Hornets

It really started on defense," Turkoglu said. "We got stops and rebounds. Weve been great offensively since they built the team, but we were helping each other on defense tonight."

Turkoglu and Jose Calderon both had 16 points for Toronto, while Bargnani added 14.

Chris Paul led New Orleans with 21 points and a season-high 18 assists, but he did not score in the third quarter, when the Raptors hit more 3-pointers (8) than the Hornets had field goals (6).

"Our focus tonight was on Chris Paul," Toronto coach Jay Triano said. "Any time he gave it up for the most part our guys had a hand in his face. He had to work for everything he got."

Toronto Raptors fire away in third quarter to defeat New Orleans Hornets

On Friday night, not even the home-court advantage could save the Hornets as they were undone by the Raptors' franchise-record eight 3-pointers in the third quarter that led to a 107-90 defeat in front of 15,010 at the New Orleans Arena.

"We couldn't stop them, " Paul said. "They came down and started executing, hitting 3s and getting to the foul line. We tried to stay in front of them but they got around and made plays, seemed like every time the shot clock ran down."

Sunshine Girl - 07.11.09

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Old 11-07-2009, 11:30 AM   #2 (permalink)
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