This was suppose to be the return of CB4. Instead as things would turn out Bosh would not even see this one in a suit on the bench. About an hour before tip time a story broke that Bosh had been taken to the hospital with severe stomach cramps. It had been reported earlier in the day that Bosh had missed shoot around with an upset stomach. It was the start of a night that would see Raptors going in and out of the line-up. Jose Calderon and Hedo Turkoglu would play in this one. They also had been out and now back. Hedo would leave the game and return later. Andrea Bargnani who like Bosh had been under the weather as was Amir Johnson. It was like a battle just to see who was healthy. Bargnani would also have to leave this game. Not for sickness but because a Johnson elbow whacked him in the head ans caused him to bleed. But he would eventual return as well.
Nothing about this contest was pretty to be honest about it. The Raptors despite all the adversity looked like the better team if only slightly at times. I mentioned the comments of Tracy McGrady in the blog prior to this one. It seems a lot of the folks at the game must have heard them as well. McGrady was booed loudly throughout the first half. Not the levels of a Vince Carter but loud enough you could notice on the broadcast of the game. T-Mac did not look good and playing at the point guard spot for the Knicks seems an odd choice for Mike D'Antoni. However that is where T-Mac played. He would get burned defensively by both Jack and Calderon. McGrady is no longer the athletic freak he once was and it showed. The Raptors had little answers for David Lee in the first half though as he was the guy doing the most damage for the Knicks. The Raptors had a lead of 7 points shrink to just 1 by halftime 53-52.
The teams battled to a virtual stalemate in the 3rd quarter with both scoring 25 points a piece. The Raptors defense in this one was not great in fact at times it was far from good. It was not Hedo or Bargnani that would save this team. Although Bargnani would hit a big shot late. But Jose Calderon, Sonny Weems off the bench and Jack and Amir Johnson from the starting unit were the big keys. Weems lead the team off the bench with 20 points and 9 rebounds. Calderon had 16 points and 6 assists in his return. While Jack and Amir both had 14 and Amir had 5 offensive rebounds among his 8.
While all this was going on apparently Bosh was getting an IV at the hospital. But his Raptors whether he was watching or not escaped the ACC with a 102-96 win. The Knicks just have a terrible time winning games at the ACC. They now fall to 4-17 at the building. The game also ties the all time series at 28-28. But for the Raptors it snaps a 4 game losing streak. On to Philly with a early tip time of noon. That does not leave much time for CB4 to recover from whatever this bug is that has entered the Raptor Locker Room. Lots on time to clean the room up after Sunday as the Raptors will be on the road for 4 games on the West Coast next week.
I am heading down to cover the game with the Sixers and Raptors on Sunday. So the Dino Nation Blog will be in the house working hard. How hard the Raptors may have to work will depend on who is healthy enough to play. I am not even going to guess on that. But you would have to figure just logically that Bosh could be doubtful for that game given the lack of recovery time. But will see.
Next Stop for me is the ACC.