In the battle of the two teams that were left at the alter, it was the Toronto Raptors missing Chris Bosh less at the end of the night. Cavs were due for a letdown after shocking the Celtics at home to start the season. They had a roster that not only did not feature Lebron James, but a few other players that will play for them this season. Raptors won the contest 101-81 and a late bucket to deliver the pizza for the fans did not sit well with the Cavs. The time has come to flip the script on this promotion and make it just simply, if Raptors hold a team to under 100 points pizza for all. Give the fans something positive to cheer about rather then something that can turn into a negative as it did last night. Not that the Raptors will care all that much.They are just happy to be heading on a very tough west coast trip not still searching for their first win.
Raptors did a solid job on defence holding the Cavs to under 40% with a shooting percentage of just 38.1%. The also won the battle on the glass in a big way led by Reggie Evans with 14 rebounds and 5 on the offensive end of the floor. They out rebounded the Cavs 45-33, who were without one of their glass eaters in Anderson Varejao. Reggie Evans has been a one man gang of rebound for the Raptors. Andrea Bargnani was not with only 1 rebound. However the 20 points were nice and the shooting 7-13 and 5-5 at the line were great. All totalled into 20 points to lead the Raptors who had 5 players score in double figures. The other four were Kleiza with 19, DeRozan with 14, Weems with 13 and Barbosa with 13.
Kleiza looked more like the guy that started the pre-season and had people expecting big things from him. The Young Onez or as I like calling them, The artists formerly known as Young Gunz. Whatever you call them a solid bounce back night for all 3 after a less than spectacular beginning to the evening for them to start the year. Amir had 8 points and was a perfect 4-4 with 3 boards but still 4 fouls.
Aside from the whole pizza incident not a lot went wrong for the Raptors. They pretty much had this one under control from the opening bell to the magic making pizza shot. I am even so happy that it took me till this long to point out Jose Calderon was 0-5 from the field with 0 points but did lead team in assists with 7. If you are going to get 0 points you better be dropping double digit dimes like Reggie does rebounds. In fact part of me was sad Reggie scored last night. I was wondering what record was for number of rebounds without a point. Whatever the record is, would not shock me if Reggie already owns it. But for all of those who wonder why Jose is still here, lines like that are doing nothing to make him anymore movable.
Raps now hit the west coast taking on the Kings to start then 3 playoff teams in the Western Conference last year in the Jazz, Lakers and Blazers. This will be tough for the Raptors to come home as the leave with a .500 record. But .500 sounds a lot better then 0-2 doesn't it.
As for my little secret mission last night it was a success. Once all the details get worked out I will let you guys in on what is going on. But it is something good for you as a reader of the Dino Nation Blog and something you could end up enjoying. Well a few of you anyway. It was odd going to a game that I was not covering in some form or fashion. In the last 3 years I can not recall being at a game where I was just there as fan. It was a nice change. Not that I am looking to retire from what I am doing. But it was a great way to recharge my batteries. Thanks to all the folks from last night for just a great evening. Raptors have the weekend off and do not play till Monday in Sacramento.
Tomorrow is Halloween so to all the little people like Kid Raptor hope they get lots of candy. While for all us older folks please be careful out their and be on alert for the kids. Also if you are going out yourself to a more adult Halloween Party make sure you don't drink and drive. It will be a much a happier Halloween for Raptor fans as the Raptors treat for us all was a win.