No Bosh again, he was supposed to play but now ending in hospital, just our luck eh?
Anyway, the Raptors won the game despite that, albeit against a bad team like the Knicks. Still it’s as close to a must win as it gets.
I posted 4 issues that contributed to the recent struggle. Let’s look at these four items:
1) Defense. Much better job on this end. While the Knicks shoot 48% from the floor, they also turnover the ball 13 times, the Raptors did have 7 steals in the game. Basically, the Raps did a much better job playing the passing lane and make a lot of deflections as well.
2) Bargnani and DeRozan. Bargnani struggled once again, but DeRozan played well. 10 points in 22 minutes, and hit a couple of jumpers. As long as he is not a complete zero out there, that’s good.
3) Turnovers. Only 8 tonight. The Knicks is not known for their defense, so as long as we take care of the ball, we win.
4) Energy and Effort. Amir Johnson’s first start with 14/8 including 5 offensive boards. Sonny Weems 20/9, provided a spark off the bench. With Bosh out, Bargnani struggling, and Turkoglu not 100%, someone else need to step up and the team respond with a much better effort.
Keys to the win:
- 62 points in the paint. The Knicks do not have anyone who can block shots. Very soft interior defense, so the Raptors take full advantage. They didn’t take too many jump shots, instead they remain aggressive for the game.
- Amir/Weems. They provide energy and athleticism sorely needed. They combined for 34 points and 17 rebounds. The trade with the Bucks is looking better each day.
Hopefully Bosh is ok and will be back on Sunday. We do need our full lineup before going to the west coast trip. Things are getting tighter in the Eastern Conference, each game means a little more between now and to the end of the season.
Tags: Toronto Raptors