Today in Raptorland - 1/19/08
Old 01-19-2008, 11:19 AM   #1 (permalink)
convinced that Raptors fans are only happy when they're unhappy.

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Bosh in the zone

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The Raptors franchise player is locked in the kind of zone athletes -- who do pray -- must go home at night praying to find. Making things even more miserable for the defences trying to stop him is that every time they throw double and even triple coverages at him, Bosh unfailingly finds not just the open teammate but the teammate with the best chance to score and usually with the desired results.

The result last night was a dominant fourth quarter for Bosh, who scored 13 of his game-high 35 points, and a fourth consecutive home win for the Raptors who pulled away down the stretch for an 89-78 win over the Atlanta Hawks.
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Johnson, who could be seen jawing at Calderon as teammate Marvin Williams took foul shots a series earlier, took drastic action as the Raptors were setting up their offence on the ensuring series. With Calderon's back to him, Johnson ran by and threw an elbow at the back of the Toronto point guard's head knocking him to the court.

The attack earned Johnson a flagrant foul-2 which brings an immediate ejection and an automatic review which could mean more punishment.

Calderon said he had no idea what prompted Johnson's anger. Asked about the seemingly heated conversation behind the foul line earlier, Calderon denied it was heated at all.

"We were talking about basketball," he said in rather unconvincing fashion.
Going easy on Horford

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"First of all we don't feel we need to try and retaliate against the young man (Horford)," Mitchell said. "All that stuff happened in the heat of the moment. Mike Woodson (Atlanta's coach) came down to our locker room and he and I talked about it. I thought it was very gracious of him to do that and to come down and talk to T.J. (Horford) went to the hospital and spent two hours with T.J. T.J. is fine with it. I'm fine with it. Obviously we were all scared because of T.J's history, that's why I got upset, but afterwards you realize it was an accident. You realize (Horford) is a good young man ... so it's a non-issue."
Game Day

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KEYS TO THE GAME

Andrea Bargnani has to do a good job guarding Samuel Dalembert and stay out of early foul trouble, that is, stay in the game. Given that tonight's game is the second in a back-to-back, someone has to come in (either Juan Dixon or Carlos Delfino) and do an effective job spelling starting point guard Jose Calderon.


Another big night for Raptors' Bosh

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Bosh had another monster night, 35 points on just 18 field-goal attempts, as he helped rally the Raptors to an 89-78 victory over the Atlanta Hawks before a sellout crowd at the Air Canada Centre that witnessed Toronto's fifth win in its last six games.
Moon pulling out all stops, props in dunkfest

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Moon, the fresh-from-the-bus-leagues rookie, is hoping for better against a yet-to-be-determined field that will reportedly include defending champion Gerald Green. And the heartening thing is that the first Raptor in eight years to vie for the title isn't going to New Orleans unprepared. He has assembled a brain trust that's been brainstorming his strategy. With the help of Jay Triano, the Toronto assistant coach, and Juan Dixon, his stylish teammate, among others, Moon has formulated a blueprint that he hopes will accentuate his prodigious gifts pogo-stick leaping ability, meat-hook hands and an infectious smile.
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"I'll give you this much," says Triano. "We have a plan. And we have a theme."

Moon also has, according to Dixon, names for his dunks and an as-yet-unspecified prop.

"His prop, if we can get it done, is going to take him over the moon," said Dixon.

"This is the first time I've been really excited to watch the dunk contest."

Moon, who isn't saying much, will say this: "I'm not going there to lose. ... I played for the Harlem Globetrotters.

"So I know about putting on a show."


Bosh leads Toronto's charge

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Toronto held Atlanta to only two field goals the rest of the way, one a deep, contested three-pointer at the end of the shot clock by Joe Johnson, who scored 11 of his Atlanta-best 25 points in the fourth quarter.

The key figure on that end was Jamario Moon, who had five steals and three blocks to go along with five rebounds and nine points. When the Raptors went to a small lineup for most of the second half, Moon found himself guarding power forward Josh Smith and held him to only four points after Smith scored 20 in the first.
Heat lose 12th in a row

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Brandon Roy led a fourth-quarter comeback Friday night and the Portland Trail Blazers won 98-91 to extend the Heat's losing streak to 12 games, which matches the third-longest in franchise history.


Ukic hoping to join Raptors

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"Toronto are showing an extra interest right now because I'm playing much better than in the last two years," Ukic said after a game-high 23 points in the Romans' win over Partizan Belgrade on Wednesday night. "But we will talk about this once the season is over.

"In the summer, negotiations will increase but lots of things have to happen at the same time in order for something to happen. ... I'm at Roma just for this season and then it will be up to Barcelona to decide. If they want me they will have to negotiate with Barcelona."


Johnson ejected in loss to Raptors

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The Hawks were in the game well into the fourth quarter but came apart in the face of the Raptors' game-ending assault that began with an Anthony Parker 3-pointer from the deep corner with 4:53 to play and ended with a Chris Bosh turnaround jumper in the lane with 20.7 seconds to play.

Five points was all the Hawks scored during that stretch, while the Raptors ran off 14 to take their second victory this season over the Hawks, who stand at 17-19 with Monday's game against Portland at Philips Arena as their last chance for a victory before their extended road trip.

"You've got to give it to them," said Hawks captain Joe Johnson, who finished with a team-high 25 points. "We just couldn't get the key stops we needed. Whenever we did, it was a foul, and they made their free throws, like they were supposed to.
Only a smattering of boos for Horford

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The fans at Air Canada Centre didn't pound Hawks rookie center Al Horford during the pregame introductions Friday night. There was a smattering of boos when he was introduced and every time he touched the ball in the early going, but nothing more. Horford's hard foul on Raptors point guard T.J. Ford late in the Raptors' Dec. 11 victory in Atlanta resulted in Horford being ejected and Ford spending a night in Piedmont Hospital under observation. Ford, who missed the 2004-05 season with Milwaukee following neck surgery, has not played since. He wasn't at Friday's game, as he is currently working out in Houston with the hope of returning soon.

JOHNSON TOSSED: Friday night's game wasn't without incident, though. Hawks point guard Anthony Johnson was ejected from the game for a flagrant-foul penalty 2 with 41.3 seconds to play before halftime after connecting with an elbow to the head of Raptors point guard Jose Calderon. Johnson and Calderon were engaged in a heated conversation at the foul line two possessions before Johnson was ejected. Johnson had to be escorted from the floor and could face an additional penalty from the league. Rookie Acie Law IV replaced him to start the second half.


Anthony Johnson's Flagrant Two

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"I don't know what actually happened. I haven't really talked with him (Anthony Johnson) about it."

There wasn't a lot of tension in the game building up to this besides some harmless jawing between the two players. Johnson looked to be agitated by Calderon's smothering defense after he missed three missed field goal attempts, but there was nothing that made anyone think he would deliver a nasty forearm shiver to Calderon.

"Obviously he and Jose (Calderon) had some kind of confrontation," Woodson elaborated. "I don't know how it started but he did throw a blow and he was ejected from the game."
Babe of the Day

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Old 01-19-2008, 12:15 PM   #2 (permalink)
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WOW, what a body. Too bad those look fake.
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