Being a die-hard Toronto Raptors fan dating back to my elementary school days, I have seen a lot of shit. However, nothing quite compares to what I witnessed last night.
Losing a game is one thing. However, losing a game 104-77 to a Milwaukee Bucks team that fields two rookies in their starting line-up, is absolutely disgusting. This is the NBA playoffs. You cannot score 12 points in the first quarter of a game.
Maybe this would have been acceptable if this was the Raptors’ first playoff rodeo, and they were “inexperienced” like the Bucks. The Raptors have a history of performing poorly in the playoffs against teams that are, on paper, inferior to them.
The loss to the Brooklyn Nets in their first playoff stint was acceptable. That was a veteran team going up against a younger, inexperienced team. They still pushed Brooklyn to 7 games, and it was an ultra-competitive series. Forward to next season, where the Raptors were absolutely embarrassed by the Washington Wizards in a 4 game sweep. Next season, the Raptors, who won 56 games, were pushed to 7 games by both the Indiana Pacers and Miami Heat. It’s never easy with this team. And for whatever reason, they always seem to be ill-prepared for every playoff game and series no matter the circumstance. Yesterday was the most embarrassing game I have ever witnessed and I am ashamed to be a Raptors fan.
My faith in this team is gone. Kyle Lowry, the bull-dog competitor, doesn’t seem to have any grit in him in the playoffs.Seriously – what is wrong with this guy? Is he checked out? Where is your pride? Even when Lowry isn’t hitting shots, he’s still competing at 110%. That was not happening. DeMar DeRozan, despite having an incredible regular season, is going back to his old ways of being a complete defensive liability and utterly useless when his spots on offense are taken away from him. Jonas Valanciunas is possibly the most frustrating player to watch. What’s wrong with you? Why are you only engaged when you are getting the ball on offense. That has nothing to do with getting a f***ing rebound. And why are you fist pumping after making a bucket when you are down by 30 in the fourth quarter?
DeMarre Carroll… nobody gives a shit about your expensive ass suit or Gucci loafers and your “#TooEasy #Shoegame”. Get off Instagram and just sit at the end of the bench because you are the worst player on the court in this series by a long shot. Patrick Patterson, just don’t shoot the ball. When we need you to hit a 3, we know you won’t hit it. And you look like you are 40 years old.
Dwane Casey deserves his own paragraph. Same shit, different year with this guy. I’ve said it here in 2012, here in 2015, and nothing has really changed. Casey does not know how to adjust. His Raptors are reactive as opposed to proactive and assertive – and it’s a slow reaction at best. I don’t know how after all you have been through, this team can show up against a young Bucks team and perform the way they have. It’s absolute insanity I feel sick to my stomach just thinking about it. This guy is so damn stubborn with everything he does – of course the only minutes Norm Powell gets in yesterday’s game come in the 4th quarter when the game is way out of hand. How about addressing some of your issues? How about attacking the paint early on against a thin frontcourt? How about exploiting switches when DeRozan and Lowry get swarmed by the Bucks’ length? How about taking a time-out before the run gets to 10-0? How about running a play?
Masai Ujiri has literally build a team for this guy’s “system”, and he is still so lackluster when it comes down to it. He has no offensive sets, doesn’t know how to use his players, and is a step late every time. Dwane, you are a nice guy, but you are a terrible coach when it comes to playoff basketball. PS – this meme is very old, but still very relevant.
Even if this team wins tomorrow, or the series (which they probably will), it will take much more than that for my faith to be restored in this franchise.