Raptors road woes are well documented (6-33 on the Road) that being said this is one of the few places on the NBA map the Raptors have won. But that was early in the season (94-86 Win on Nov 17 2010), and that was a much different Sixers team. After a very slow start to the season Doug Collins has turned this thing around. Some even say he deserves to win the Coach of the Year Award. I am not one of those. But he has done a solid job turning the Sixers into a playoff team once again. Raptors have been without Andrea Bargnani 4 of the last 6 games and when he has been in there it really hasn't done anything. If it was my call I would just shut him down for rest of season. Let Ed Davis play and gobble up the extra minutes. Jose Calderon returned the last game and again I would rather see Jerryd Bayless at this point. Raptors should just play the kids and honestly should have been doing it for a long time. This team could easily make it to 60 losses on the season. They play Philly tonight, Nets on Sunday, Bucks on Monday and close it out with Heat on Wednesday. It stopped being about winning a long time ago.
The Basics: Raptors 21-57 (Lost 6 straight on Road) Philadelphia 40-39 (1/2 game behind Knicks for 6th in East)
When Last We Saw Them: The Raptors lost to the worst team in the NBA in the Cavs and trailed by as many as 22 the less we say about this game the better.
The Key Match Ups: Jrue Holiday is the key match-up for the Raptors to figure out. His improvement has been a big part of this Sixers turnaround. In a new system this season he has been able to shine. The Eddie Jordan Princeton offence was not a good fit for him or the Sixers. Be it Calderon or Bayless there needs to be an improvement on defensive end. Jodie Meeks can be a deadly 3 point shooter at times he is averaging 41% on the season. Raptors defence of the three point line has been a joke for most of the season. When ever you see Toronto vs Philly the name Andre Iguodala comes to the forefront. He still remembers Rob Babcock for passing on him in the draft and often is very motivated to come out and show Raptor fans what they missed out on.
Other Things Of Note: Your Ping Pong Ball Standings down the stretch:
- 1. Minnesota 17-62 --
- 2. Cleveland 17-61 (1/2 Game Back)
- 3.Washington/Toronto 21-57 (4 1\2 Games back)
- 5. New Jersey 24-54 ( 7 1/2 Games Back)
So with a loss the or a Nets win the Raptors would enter the Draft Lottery no worse than 4th and meaning the lowest they could pick is 7th. By winning the season series with Cleveland it would put 2nd out of reach. So really if you want to scoreboard watch you are looking for Washington wins down the stretch. Basically Raptors will enter the lottery 3rd or 4th it looks like.
Where Is It On? Sportsnet 1 (Stick around after to watch the Jays a team that is WINNING)