Raptors Have A Win For The Ages In Dallas.

The beaten down Raptors roll into Dallas with No Jose, Andrea, Sonny and Barbosa and Johnson were game time decisions but would give it a go. When you consider all of that it almost seems only fair the at Dirk Nowitski was not going to be in the line up for Dallas. Even with that could this banged up group hang with one of the best teams in NBA this year? It would seem highly doubtful but that is why they play the games.

1st Quarter

The Raps got off to a good start, that Bayless to Dorsey combination we have all been talking about hooking up for the alley opp and Raps had 8-3 lead in the first 3 minutes of this one. Joey Dorsey was getting the start. Former Raptor for a little while Shawn Marion made some free throws and had a score to cut lead down to 10-7. Amir Johnson hooks up the Rook Ed Davis for a dunk and Raptors were beating the Mavericks like they were the Cowboys 14-7. A time out for the Mavs to get things organized. Demar DeRozan got called for a travel but soon after made up for it with a score plus the foul on a very nice drive the basket. Unlike last night makes and 1 and the plucky under manned Raptors still led 17-11. Raptors had been doing a good job taking care of the ball but another DeRozan travel and silly offensive foul on Kleiza. The good news is Dallas was not taking advantage of the mistakes. A rare 2 made free throws for Brenden Haywood. He would later foul Ed Davis sending him to the line. Davis not the greatest at the line himself split two and was tied for lead in scoring for the Raptors. He and DeRozan both had 7 and Raps lead 21-13. It was Dallas looking like the Raps with 7 turnovers and Dinos had a 23-13 lead after 1.

2nd Quarter

Dallas shot just 20% in that first quarter. A season best on D for the Raptors this year. Oh and did we mention the Raptors have not won in 10 tries in Dallas? Wright to Davis for a dunk. But Dallas got on a 7-2 run and it is was 25-20 Raptors and Triano needed a time out and took it. I am pretty sure giving up a wide open 3 was not part of Jay's plan in time out but that is what happened. Mavs extend this run and it was 12 and we were tied at 25. Ed Davis had 11 point 7 boards and 3 Blocks are you kidding me? Teams were battling for control with score 29-27 Raps on that last Davis bucket. The Davis show continued as he has a first half double double and the Raps were sparked on a run and lead 34-29. Ed Davis was filling the stat sheet he has 3 steals as well. The latest lead to an Amir Johnson basket in transition and with the Raps up 5 it was time for Dallas to call a time out. Here is some more bad news though as Bayless twists his ankle and that would be bad with Jose out. Bayless wanted to stay in the game but takes a seat. Barbosa in for him gets a steal and the beat goes on with a transition hoop and Raps lead 36-31. Bayless back in nails a jumper and Raps were on another run and led 40-31. Kleiza for 3 and book it the Raps were on a 14-2 run and Dallas has to burn another time out with Raptors up a dozen. Linas was not done as he nails another 3 and the lead was up to 14. Dallas would stop the bleeding with a mini 5-0 run to get it back to single digits. Make that an 8-0 run with a Terry 3 ball. Raptors perimeter D has not been good despite all the other good stuff. Raptors take a surprising 46-40 lead to the half.

3rd Quarter

The signs were there this might not last but who thought the Raptors would be up 6 at the half in this one? So maybe the Raptors can keep surprising in this one? Dorsey split a couple free throws then Bayless hooked him up with an easy 2. Demar DeRozan hits and Raptors come out of the locker room on a run. DeRozan another 2 on the rainbow jumper and a 7-0 run and a 53-40 lead would cause for an early Dallas time out. Mavs came out of time out and started a reply run of their own. Jason Terry hit a long 2 in the corner and it was 55-46 Raptors. Both teams went cold after that and DeRozan would get to the line to try and break the scoring drought. He split a pair at the line and the lead was 10. Jason Terry is perhaps one of the more under rated guys in the NBA. He is very good and shows just how good with a pretty jumper to bring it back to single digits again. A big Chandler dunk and foul and Mavs were back in this thing. The and 1 was good and this was a 5 point game 56-51. Linas Kleiza had a meltdown with a turnover and didn't like the call and wouldn't shut up and got two technical fouls and was gone. Dallas made 1 of 2 and it was a 4 point game. But the Raptors kept on fighting and built the lead back to 59-52. Tyson Chandler got a tech to help that along. Julian Wright a nice pass in transition and leads to a score...Raptors lead was back to 8. If there is one beef the perimeter defence has been ugly and Brain Cardinal takes advantage with a 3. The plucky Raptors would take a 5 point lead to the 4th up 64-59.

4th Quarter

Another 3 to start the 4th and Mavs had got it down to just a 2 point lead. But as they have all night Raptors answer and push the lead to 5 on an Amir bucket. Mavs score and then Bayless finds Amir for back to back Raptor scores for him and Raps lead 69-64. That might be the last assist of the night for Bayless though as he goes down in serious pain from that same ankle he injured earlier. He turned it again and this time I think he will not be able to solider on. The Raptors in effect have no point guard for the last 9 minutes of this one. Barbosa the closest thing to one would go out there. He himself was a game time decision. Jason Kidd a big three pointer and cuts the Raptor lead to just 4 with score 71-68. The Raps hustle was off the charts they were diving on the floor and doing everything the could. Barbosa pressed into action would hit to big hoops to make it 75-68 Raptors with 5:13 to play. More Barbosa magic and a heart and hustle charge take by Julian Wright. Raptors against all odds and logic had another 8-0 run and led 79-68. Amir Johnson with a bad back had played 41 minutes with a bad back and still out there hooks up Demar DeRozan for 2. The Raptors were 1 minute away from first win in Dallas since 1999 and one of the most gutsy wins in Raptors history. Raptors would hang on and do just that. Raptors win in improbable fashion 84-76.

Ed Davis had a career night and every guy in red that stepped on the floor with the exception of 1 gave a tremendous effort. Raptors had no business winning this game but someone forgot to tell them that. You can only hope they can bottle this effort for the future when they are healthy and at full strength. I can not recall a game in which the Raptors played with so much heart in their history. There was every reason to give up and they did not. Full marks to the Raptors and we can all party like it's 1999 cause that was the last time the Raptors won in Dallas. People will likely bring up a game vs Washington where the Raptors had only 9 players and I believe 2 or 3 were on 10 day contracts in which Raps won. This was different from that game though. Raptors just refused to give up. If you missed watching this game you missed something special.

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