The Toronto Raptors continued their losing ways in a difficult matchup against a hot Brooklyn Nets team. The Nets were heading into this game as winners of 6 in a row. This team seems to finding new chemistry under former Raptor assistant coach PJ Carlisemo. Instead of blowing a large lead, the Raptors managed to make it a tough competition for most of the game. With Kyle Lowry rolling his ankle early, the Raptors second unit persisted to come out flat, which allowed Brooklyn to extend their lead. His return effort will not go unnoticed. With the Raptors dropping this effort 113-106 look for Dwane Casey to shake things up in the near future.
The Raptors managed to get 106 points in an ugly one. It seemed as if the Toronto wings couldn’t get into their comfort zone against a wing heavy Brooklyn team. For most of the game the offence looked frantic and unorganized. Without Lowry for a majority of the game, Jose Calderon was unable to create the space for entry passes into the post. This essentially lead to many Toronto one-and-dones from the perimeter. DeMar DeRozan’s body language still reeks of immaturity. If he plans on earning respect around the league, that’s going to need to stop.
The Raptors failed to commit to their defensive principles in this matchup,giving up 113 points on 49% shooting forcing only 6 turnovers all game. Tonight they elected to trade baskets on the offensive end against this Nets team instead of getting back in transition. The Raptors initially were playing solid interior defence against the likes of Brook Lopez, but it was Andray Blatche that really created problems with his mobility. The transition defense for Toronto was abysmal in this matchup. When Keith Bogans is the one leading the fast-break, there’s definitely a problem. Look for this to be addressed before tomorrows game against the Chicago Bulls.
The Raptors persistence on the glass continued in this matchup against the Nets. Apart from Lowry’s “hero-ball” antics in the fourth quarter, rebounding was the reason the Raptors managed to keep this game close. Wing players Landry Fields and Terrence Ross combined for 20 rebounds. The Raptors out-rebounded the Nets 41-34 in this game.
Game ball in this matchup goes to Brooklyn Nets shooting guard Joe Johnson. His size at the two-guard matched with his poise on offence really hurt the Raptors in this one. Hitting a dagger three pointer late in the game to go with his 21 points and cool 5 rebound, 5 assist game. Shout out to Kyle Lowry for the late game heroics (21pts, 5ast in 14min)…but we still lost.
Photo Cred: (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)