The Basics: New York 13-9 (4-5 at Home) Raptors 8-13(2-8 on the Road)
When Last We Saw Them: The Raptors were giving up 3-balls at an alarming rate and when the pinball machine stopped they had a 24 point loss in Indiana. A lack of perimeter defence has been a serious issue of late. This was a constant problem last season and it is becoming a growing one for this year.
Key Match-Ups: Really they have not changed in a week. Demar DeRozan needs to be better than Landry Fields. I joked around the last time saying Landry who? But he was the rookie of the month in the Eastern Conference. For a 2nd round pick to do that is a pretty huge accomplishment. But Demar is a lottery pick from the previous draft and has to show he is the superior talent. Amare Stoudamire has feasted on the Raptors in 2 games so far averaging 25 points and 10.5 rebounds in 2 meetings. Bargnani in the same 2 games is averaging 19 points and and 6.5 rebounds. Obviously perimeter defence will be essential to have any chance at winning.
Other Things of Note: The Knicks have just not won 5 straight but 10 of their last 11 games. The lone loss came to Atlanta 99-90 back on November 27th. This winning of 10 of 11 came on the heels of 6 game losing streak. The Raptors have a 3 game winning streak at MSG and an overall 11-18 record in NYC all-time. The Knicks are averaging 107.7 points per game this season and are shooting 46.6%. The Knicks in the Season Opener shot 26% from 3 Point Range but in their latest win shot 44.4% from beyond the arc. It appears the Raptors were fortunate that they were in New York because if they had not been it sures seems like Jay Triano would have had them practising. But as in all things in New York with no notice getting anything in New York is next to impossible. But Triano was clearly not happy about his team's play in Indiana and if you watched it you know why he has reason to feel that way.