BOSH IS BACK

(10:15am Eastern) – As you read first in this space and heard first on the FAN airwaves, Chris Bosh will be back tonight for the Raptors.  Bosh reconfirmed the news on his personal website ( www.chris-bosh.com ).

Obviously, based on the way things went for the Raps on their 5-game trip out West, Bosh’s return could/should have a huge impact on the team.  Not only has the club struggled on the offensive end, but they’ve missed CB4′s defense as well.  While he may not be a lockdown defender, he’s a good on help D … coming over from the weak side with a strong contest or block and he’s one of the better communicators (second only to Rasho Nesterovic) on that end of the floor as well. 

Bosh told me he’s had no pain in his knee and he’s as close to “normal” as he’s been in a couple of weeks.  It wasn’t that long ago that he could barely walk up stairs – or backpeddle on the floor – without experiencing some major discomfort.  But those issues are behind him and he’s rejuvenated for the final 15-game stretch.

THE LAST MONTH

Speaking of those final 15 games … they’re not as easy as some folks may be making them out to be.  Granted, things start tonight with the league’s worst team – the Miami Heat.  In fact, Toronto will get another shot at the Heat before the year wraps up as well.  So that’s positive news.  But take a look at the next chunk of games for T.O …

Following tonight’s game against the Heat, the Raptors will play the Cavs, Nuggets, and Pistons – a nasty 3-game stretch for a team that is trying to break out of a funk that has seen them lose 9 of their last 11 game.

However, following next Wednesday’s game against Detroit, the Raps will face only 2 teams (New Orleans, and Detroit again) with winning records.  With two against Charlotte; two against New Jersey; and games against Milwaukee and Atlanta as well … if Toronto is a legit 5TH or 6TH seed … these are games that they need to take care of. 

Plus, of these final 15 games, 9 of them come at the ACC.  Home court advantage should mean something … especially at this time of the year.

For what it’s worth, I’ve got them going 8-7 over the final 15 … to finish the season 42-40.

GARBO GAB

Forget about the legal battle going on with the Raptors and the Spanish Basketball Federation right now.  We’ll save that for the lawyers. 

The better news about Jorge Garbajosa involves the man himself.

If you missed it on Monday, Jonesy had a 1 on 1 interview with Garbo on our pre-game show that aired before the Raps-Jazz game.  In that interview, Garbajosa told the FAN that he’s trying to come back THIS SEASON.  While he admitted that a return could be a long shot … that’s the ultimate goal nonetheless. 

When Jonesy asked him how the rehab was going and if he was looking forward to working out in the summer and getting set for the Beijing Olympics … Garbo responded by saying that he doesn’t care about Beijing right now.  He said he’s a Raptor and, for now, that’s all that matters.  And if he can get back on the floor some time this season – either late in the regular season or even in the post-season – he will do his damndest to do so.

There’s no doubt in my mind that the Raps have missed #15′s game and grit this season.
 

E. Smith

6 Responses to “Quick Hits”
  1. 1.

    I am very frustrated with the Raptors. It seems much of what they did right last year they are doing wrong this year. Unfortunately TJ Ford is hurting the team when he plays and taking time away from one of the best point guards in the NBA being Jose Calderon. Since Ford returned from his last injury Calderon’s play had gone downhill and Ford has been terrible. Calderon should be playing 30-35min per game but that is not happening and the team has suffered for it. What is Sam Mitchell doing? How can Mitchell say in the last post-game press conference that he was “Happy” with the way the team played??? They were 0-5–how happy can you be?? Where is the fire and desire to win? What is going on with this team? Sure the loss of Bosh was important but for this team to be 1 game over .500 at this point in the season is a disgrace and nobody in the organization seems to be too upset about it?? What about Bryan Colangelo?? Why is it the MLSE teams seem “Happy” about mediocrity??

    - David Rubinstein
  2. 2.

    i think david raises a great point here. My BIG concern going into next year would be -Honestly is there any playersin Raptors line up (except Bosh) that deserves to be starting for a team trying to contend for atleast a conference championship over next 1-2 years? I think we have a number of average or mediocre players but no stars and let’s remember that playoffs are won on star power or top players.

    - Arpan
  3. 3.

    It has become clear over this last roadtrip that the Raps are seriously missing that shot-blocker and big body in the middle. Since Jose has established himself as the clear starting point guard, we should trade Ford to a team needing a PG with a lot of big guys (Atlanta anyone?). Ford is young and can fetch a lot of assets in return.

    - John
  4. 4.

    I think that Jose is going to go to L.A and play with his friend Pau. I would like for the first person off the bench to not always be Carlos, but someone else. Is it just me or have we not given Maceo a chance to get off the bench, and certainly he never played his way onto it in the first place.

    - Tait Luste
  5. 5.

    Arpan,

    How can you say that playoffs are won on star power?

    I’m going to throw some teams with stars out there:

    New jersey (carter, Kidd, Jefferson).

    Houston (McGrady, Ming)

    Denver (Anthony, Iverson)

    Phoenix (Nash, Stoudemire, Marion)

    It’s not about just having stars on your team, Granted having an all-star helps, but you need role players that buy into a system.

    The Raptors have some pieces to the puzzle, they just need some tweaking, and maybe a little fire under their butts on the defensive end.

    I have always been curious though, I like Sam Mitchell alot, but it seems that ever since he has gotten here, he has preached Defence and rebounding, but his teams have never seemed to get after it. I wonder if he is teaching defensive fundamentals in a way that motivates his players. I have not once seen a raptor player dive into the crowd after a loose ball this year….Shaq has done it TWICE in the last 3 weeks!

    - Mark
  6. 6.

    Tait Luste,

    Maceo getting some serious burn off the bench? That’s ridiculous. He’s only there in case someone gets injured.

    And Jose to LA? BC WILL sign Jose, book it!

    - Mike
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