The Toronto Raptors season ended here in late April. It was the start of what would be an off-season of major change for the Raptors. It would bring Jermaine O'Neal here and it would sent T.J Ford and Rasho Nesterovic to the Pacers. The Raptors are now going with a Big 3 in the real sense of size. If they were going to get revenge it was going to be with out Jose Claderon who will miss his second game of the night. That will make the task of stopping Dwight Howard and crew that much tougher. Can they get it done? That is what we are aiming to find out. By the way the Dino Nation Blog's Major announcement is set to happen after midnight to night. So win or lose I am excited. But I would rather it was on a high note with a Raptor win so let's go.
Raptors get it started going inside to Andrea Bargnani and he scored. Magic would miss fire on their opening trip of the game. Chris Bosh would hit a jumper and the Raptors had the early 4-0 jump. Now the third of the big three line-up scores. J.J Redick would hit a 3-ball to get the Magic on the board. Jameer Nelson would hit a 3-ball of his own and we were back to even at 6 points with a time out Toronto.
Raptors got the lead by accident with a pass that scored for two points for the Raps. Will Solomon had a score and followed that up with a steal which would end up with Chris Bosh at the line. Raps would have an 11-7 lead in the early going. Andrea Bargnani would pick up his second foul trying to stop Superman. Jason Kapono would check in for Andrea. Raptors had 13-10 lead despite 5 turnovers. Well they did till Rashard Lewis hit a 3-ball to tie it. Raptors got back to back buckets to go up 4. Jameer Nelson would then score on the drive a couple times with one shot fired back from J.O. It was 19-17 for the Raptors. A.P would hit a jumper that stretched the Raptor lead to 6 points at 23-17 with under 4 minutes in the first.
Bosh would get fouled by Tony Battie with a chance to extend the lead. He would only make one of two from the line. Jameer Nelson was on fire as he scored again and the Raptor lead was 5 points at 24-19. Will Solomon would make the final shot of the quarter and the Raptors on the strength of 10 points by Jermaine O'Neal had the lead after 1 quarter leading 26-21.
Raptors would not score on first chance of the second quarter. The Magic would score on a rebound of a J.J Redick miss by Tony Battie. Raptors would get rolling after that and extended the lead out to 8 points at 33-25. Bosh would make that lead double digits at 10 on a Bosh drive and score. Anthony Johnson was doing the same to Ukic as Solomon was getting from Jameer Nelson, as he drove to basket and scored. But Roko would return the favour on the other end.
Jason Kapono made a long 2 pointer that would keep the lead at 10 points with the Raptors up 39-29. The Magic's Superman who struggled against Charlotte was still struggling tonight so far going 0-3 from the Field. Dwight did not get a field goal vs the Bobcats in the Magic's last outing and he still had not got one so far tonight. Howard would end his drought with a basket and a foul charged to J.O. Was it the blogger jinx? Maybe. Raptors would respond with a basket on the other end still leading by 9 points. Jermaine O'Neal would pick up a second foul and that would cost the Raps not long after. Hedo Turkoglu would drive to the basket and O'Neal had to let him go or risk a 3rd foul. Rashard Lewis would cash in a Raptors shot clock violation with a 3 point shot. Dwight Howard would get an easy basket after that. The Raptor lead would be gone on yet another turnover and the Magic had tied it up at 41. Dwight Howard rejected an A.P attempt into row 3 of the crowd. But Chris Bosh would find a way to score on Superman. Howard would score to tie it and A.P would come back and this time make his jump shot. Magic had 6.3 seconds to tie and they would thanks to Jameer Nelson. So all square at 45 points after the first half.
Well the Raps need to hang on to the ball and they may have a chance. But they misfired on first couple chances on offensive end. Bargnani despite a miss made a block on the other end. Another Raptor turnover would end up in a Dwight Howard offensive foul so no damage done. But Will Solomon made his 6th turnover of the night. It was not the same Will that impressed on Sunday afternoon. Hedo would turn that mistake into 2 points for the Magic who lead 48-45.
J.O made a turn around jumper and the Raptors were trying to find a way to get back into it. Chris Bosh would end up on the line after a steal made by Will Solomon. But Bosh could only hit one of two and the Raptors still trailed. Dwight Howard would get the lead back to 3 points for the Magic. He would later extend that lead to five at the line when he was fouled by Andrea Bargnani. Magic had a run going as J.J Redick would score extnding the lead to 7 he would hit a 3 pointer after another failed Raptor chance. The Raptors once 10 point lead had been reversed as the Magic now lead 60-50.
Chris Bosh would end the Magic run with a much needed jumper. But Jameer Nelson would respond quickly with a basket of his own. More bad news as the Raptors would have to go without J.O who was in foul trouble. He had a great night going with 14 points and 8 rebounds to this point. Magic were taking to the Raptors as the made turnover number 17 and the magic turned that into points 67-54. Raptors would start a 6-0 run that they badly needed. Roko Ukic drove and scored plus a foul to get the Raptors to single digits deficit.
Chris Bosh continued the run as he made a basket. The Orlando lead had been trimed to 67-61. Magic after a time out would get things back on track a bit. Rashard Lewis made a basket. Orlando had the lead back up to 9 points. But Chris Bosh was trying all he could to keep the Raps alive he scored and he had 25 and 10 with still more then a quarter to play. Bosh would get another basket and the Magic lead was 72-66. Roko Ukic would drive to the basket and get fouled and head to the line. He would only make one of two and the Raptors trailed by 6 heading to the 4th down 73-67.
Raptors had a chance to chop into the lead and make it 4 point game. Instead they miss and Hedo made a 3-ball and the lead was 9.The Orlando Magic were on cruse control for most of the 4th quarter and the Raptors despite a brilliant performance by Chris Bosh. He was a one man show. 24 turnovers had cost the Raptors to many chances in this basketball game. It was really unfortunate because you had the feeling if Jose Calderon was in this basketball game the Raptors would have won it with not to much trouble. The Raptors walk away with that same feeling from April. Much like in that series Bosh was outstanding but it was not enough. Bosh had a monster performance. 40 points, 18 rebounds and 2 steals and a block. Great news for Bosh fantasy owners but for Raptor fans and him it was not enough as the Raptors went down 103-90 to the Magic. All 5 Magic starters had double digit nights and 3 had 22 ( Nelson, Lewis and Turkoglu). This was a game the Raptors likely should have won and would have won if Jose Calderon was healthy. Hopefully he will be for the Heat tomorrow. Here is the nasty boxscore details.
Magic vs Raptors Boxscore
I will be back to tell you the big secret that has been in the making for awhile but if you look up at the top of the site you will understand what is going on a little bit. But I will explain it all at midnight. The New Era has started. Unfortunately the Raptors could not help out with a win.
O.K the announcement will have to wait to Tomorrow sorry about this. Seems a couple things need to be worked out. But it is stilling happening just delayed a day. Yeah I know sorry bout that.