We will get to tonight's match-up in a minute. But there is a much bigger story to talk about first. Richard Peddie, it was announced earlier this week is stepping down as CEO/President of MLSE as of December 31st 2011. That would be big news on it's own kind of. But the bigger news is according to The Toronto Star it seems The Ontario Teachers Pension Plan is in talks with Rogers Communications to sell them a majority interest in MLSE. This would be a huge move giving them control of all the major sports teams in the Toronto market place. They of course already own the Blue Jays. What this will mean for the Raptors remains to be seen. The future of Bryan Colangelo? Will Rogers take control of broadcasts has they have with the Blue Jays? More games on Sportsnet 1 in our future? There are about a million questions on what this would mean. Obviously the Raptors are just part of the package and the real jewel in this deal in terms of Rogers would be control of the Leafs. If this happens the price take is said to be over a billion dollars (1.3 B number is The Star) and would be the largest transaction in North America sports history. Will this mean good things for the Raptors? Up until recently Rogers track record with the Blue Jays has been not that great. But when you look at the major sports teams it is the Blue Jays with brightest future currently. Aside from them being doomed to be in the AL East and that makes getting into the playoffs a lot tougher in comparison to the Leafs or Raptors.
Now on to your regularly scheduled preview of the Raptors and Wizards. John Wall is listed as day to day and the Raptors have already avoided him once, not that it helped much. Still John Wall is a pretty amazing kid on the floor and his story off the floor is just as amazing. Take a minute to read this article on Wall from the Washington Post. Warm fuzzy feelings about Wall aside the Raptors would rather see him in a suit than in a uniform. Who will be in uniform and ready to play is Raptors rookie Ed Davis. Bryan Colangelo admitted that Davis' time table was moved up based on the injury to Reggie Evans. Speaking of Reggie he had surgery on his injured foot this morning. All the best to Reggie for a speedy recovery. Based on Raptors play vs Atlanta he is needed. But will not return anytime soon.
The Basics: Washington 5-11(Winless in 8 Road Games this season) Raptors 6-11(5-5 in Last 10)
When Last We Saw Them: The Raptors had their worst effort since a road loss to the Wizards. Josh Smith had a triple double and the Raptors had no answers and this game was never really close. Jay Triano said that each of his starters were out played by their counterpart on the Hawks and he was 100% correct.
Key Match Ups: Andre Blatche is a handful and he provides blocks, rebounds and hustle for this Wizards team. Who will match-up against him is kind of unclear. The Raptors started Joey Dorsey in place of Reggie Evans with not exactly great results. Amir Johnson had his issues with staying on the floor against the Hawks because of foul trouble. I highly doubt Ed Davis would start in his first game? But 1 or all of those 3 must find a way to deal with Blatche. Javale McGee should have his hands full with Andrea Bargnani. That is if Andrea shows up for 48 minutes. He didn't vs Atlanta after a decent first half he disappeared with only 2 points in the 2nd half. Demar DeRozan has been in a funk and battling a hamstring issue and he will have his hands full with Gilbert Arenas. If John Wall is not in the line-up that will give Arenas a lot more touches and shots(with a basketball) vs the Raptors. DeRozan needs to step up his game and with no games since Sunday you would think that Hamstring has to be feeling better.
In Case You Missed it: We have our 4 winners now for our MGD Contest and they will be joining Myself and Danielle for Raptors vs the Nuggets on December 10 in the MGD Best seats in the House. Congrats to Lanny, Mary Anne, Ray and Chi our contest winners. Thanks to all that entered the various contests we had. So on that night the Dino Nation Blog will be hosting that event. But every other Friday when the Raptors are at home I will be there covering the game with press pass in hand. Beginning this Friday with the Oklahoma City Thunder hitting the ACC. My surprise pick to win the NBA Title this year. Looking forward to it and excited to kick off DNB TGIF at the games with a bang.
I will be live blogging this one for The Score.com and Mobile tonight and will post the links later today. The Re-Cap might have to wait till tomorrow as after that game I am also live blogging Duke in NCAA action and after that it is on the Air on the Radio at midnight on CJLO on The Sports Grind. You can listen online at CJLO.com. Just the average busy evening in the life of the Dino Blogger.
As promised your links for tonight Raptors Game vs Wiz on Scoremobile and Score.com