Wednesday December 30 2009 – 10:59pm Eastern - Toronto, ON 

Bobcats @ Raptors

Final Score:
107-103, Raptors (Toronto now 16-17)

“Smith and Jones” Player of the Game:
ANDREA BARGNANI
28 points
4 rebounds
11/20 FG
4/4 FT

“Alice Fazoolis” Player of the Game:
CHRIS BOSH
33 points
13 rebounds
2 assists
2 steals
11/20 FG
11/11 FT

Shout-out to the Bobcats:

RAYMOND FELTON
23 points
7 rebounds
4 assists
2 steals
10/12 FG

Stats that stood out:
- Points in the Paint: 42-38, Charlotte
- 2nd Chance Points: 20-9, Toronto
- Fast Break Points: 39-22, Toronto
- The Bobcats with 23 turnovers leading to 33 points for the Raptors
- Toronto out-rebounds the Bobcats 16-7 in the 4th QRT
- Hedo Turkoglu did not play in the 2nd half … with a right knee contusion.  No word on his prognosis.
- Gerald Wallace grabbed 16 rebounds for the Bobcats
- Toronto had 12 steals as a team

Thumbs Up:
- The 1-2 punch of Bosh and Bargnani combined for 61 of Toronto’s 107 points.  Bosh was aggressive and intense; even diving head-first into the Bobcats’ bench at one point!  And Bargnani was down in the post a number of times … getting ‘big’ … and not just settling for the outside.

Thumbs Down:
- Toronto came into the game sitting 3rd in the NBA over the past 5 games in opponent’s FG%.  Their “D” has been solid.  But not tonight against Charlotte.  The Bobcats shot 54% for the game (hovering around 60% for a good chunk of the night!)

Smith Says:
- “They came, they saw, they conquered.  Five wins in a row for the Raptors to close out 2009.  Now the team must match this intensity and attention to detail when the calendar flips to 2010 and Toronto faces Boston, San Antonio, and Orlando right out of the gate.”

Jones Says:
- “Good intensity and hustle plays led to this win for Toronto.”

Keep the 3-ball Streak Alive (893 games and counting):
- The Raptors were 5 of 19 from 3PT range

Next game:
- Raptors @ Celtics – Saturday January 2 2010 – 7:30pm Eastern
- Tune in at 7:00pm for the pre-game show and just after 7:30pm for the “Pizza Pizza” starting line ups

* Missed our post-game show?  You can catch it right here:

[audio:http://qml.quiettouch.com/files/radio/fan590/hotaudio/TheRap-es-20091230.mp3]

14 Responses to “High Five For T.O.”
  1. 1.

    Hmmm…another game, another win.

    But, there are still plenty of dark clouds over this team.

    Why?

    Teams are measured by their record against the “better half” of the league. Wins versus the “worse half” are not useless, but not very meaningful, either.

    So, the Raptors’ record versus teams over .500?

    3 Wins / 13 Losses

    The Raptors really shouldn’t be judged on the last five games. They should be judged on the next five games, with four of them against teams with records over .500 and the game against the sub .500 team being played on the road (Philadelphia). But, then again, two of those are against Boston, and their best two players are out (Garnett and Pierce not playing). But, injuries aside, if you truly think the Raptors are a team capable of advancing beyond the first round of the playoffs, you’ll forget about the games against useless teams like Charlotte (1-14 on the road!) and concentrate on games against good teams.

    The Bobcats turned the ball over 22 times tonite (yikes!!) and the Raps barely squeezed out a win, at home.

    I don’t want to always be the pessimist (ya, right…Eric, says!). But, I sense I am not alone this time. I really feel a great number of Raps fans are of the “show me” stance. They’ve had enough of the losing and will no longer get jacked up over five wins against bad teams.

    I really am longing for this team to be successful. It’s really never happened. I read a stat this past week that sums up the Toronto Raptors’ history — they have the 4th worst alltime winning percentage in the history of the NBA. It might have been the 3rd, but I believe it was the 4th.

    This explains my angst over this team. It’s all about effort and wins.

    - brento.
  2. 2.

    Yes, I do call you a pessimist Brento

    However, I will say … there’s no disguising that Toronto is 5-0 against teams under .500

    But what would you say if they had lost 1, 2, 3 or even more of those games?

    At the very least you should give them a MAYBE …

    What do I mean?

    MAYBE they are better. MAYBE they have improved. MAYBE they have turned a corner and are ready to play on a legit level with the big boys.

    You can’t say there’s a “dark cloud” over a team that has won 5 games in a row; a team that was #3 in the league (over the past 5 games) in opponent’s FG% heading into the game against Charlotte … and #3 in the league in FG% over that same 5-game stretch. That’s a team that is getting it done on “D” and scoring at a solid clip too.

    Yes, they’re still below .500 and that’s nothing to write home about.

    But holding down 6th in the East … winning 5 in a row … and showing some (yes, SOME) positive signs in their defence and intensity, etc. is reason enough to be somewhat “optimistic” — even if it’s extremely guarded optimism.

    But a “dark cloud” ?? Come on man.

    - Eric Smith
  3. 3.

    Hey Eric,

    I would have to side with Brento on this. All though the Raps have won 5 in a row, we MUST look at the teams they beat getting that 5 in a row. You mention the Raps defense getting better. I’ll admit I’ve seen spurts of it, but over all you still see teams getting wide open looks, Bargs missing defensive assignments, inconsistent offense. Raps have a lot of holes that need to be looked at, but I don’t see them being addressed this season. Jay has had the team from the beginning so there can’t be any excuses about no practice time.

    I can’t see this team getting out of the 1st round with this defense. I really want to see this team succeed, but under this coaching staff and current lineup, a 1st round exit is all this team will be able to achieve.

    I’ve been watching ball a very long time, so my observations are not just made by a part time fan.

    This is a decent team, that can become a good team, nothing else. Sorry for the reality check!

    - Jules
  4. 4.

    We are still one legit piece away from playing with the big boys.

    Hard to figure out how we are going to get it

    - Jose hater
  5. 5.

    Brento, I’ve never said you were wrong cause its your opinion man. I agree with you people are Guarded about this team BUT its true 5-0 is better than 0-5 no matter the teams. Your right they should be aiming for better but its not all doom and gloom man. I find Miami to be inflated based on those sub 500 teams they’ve played but they have lost to teams that they should have beaten too. It is what it is. That’s why its a marathon and not a sprint. Happy New year man!

    - Lanny from Whitby
  6. 6.

    All I know was the was the best Raptor game I saw EVER! IT WAS SO SO SO SICK!

    ARE U KIDDING ME IT HAD EVERYTHING!

    Yea, It was the Bobcats but, remember Hedo wasn’t playing and because of that Sunny Weems took all his shots and maybe that’s why it was a nail biter!

    BUT, I LOVED THE GAME!

    What I learn from this is that Eric and Paul you guys do a great job on the radio and more descriptive (which I like!) Great call from both of you guys!

    New Year resolution Listen to Eric Smith and Paul Jones more times on the radio!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Yea, this team didn’t beat Boston or the Spurs but, when the franchise player jumps for a loose ball in the first quarter I was SOLD!

    Can’t wait till Bostons game and hopefully they BRING ENERGY!!!

    - Raps Fan
  7. 7.

    sadly the raps history is not discussed,,,,you are right,,,clipper fans get very angry being called the raptors of the states,,,,the clippers have far more post season success then raps fans,,and they have a young core,,,clippers have actually had a season were they went past one round in the playoffs,,,,,15 years for raps and one playoff round victory,,,,wow,,,,curious who is lower then the raps and clips,,,,,,,keep defending e,,this is your paycheck here

    - lemongellofan
  8. 8.

    I don’t mind repreating the “win-is-a-win” mantra but the sledding about to get tougher. The Raps often take winnable games against injured great teams and disappoint. There are no gimmes against the Celtics, regardless of their recent record and let’s hope Hedo misses only that one game.

    It was great to see Bargnani show real emotion and not the trumped up yells that so many NBA stars feel they need to emit after ever dunk.

    Bargs needs to remember how that feels and transfer it to crashing through the paint, taking a hack and getting to the line for the three point play. It was just a bit earlier in the game when one of the announcers was lambasting Bargs for not going up hard enough to MAKE the easy shot while taking the foul.

    Imagine if he missed that three and the Raps had managed to lose. The comments would be much different.

    Let’s move on and beat the Celts so Brento can say “yeah, but they were so shorthanded” and I can say “a-win-is-a–win” lol

    - Gary
  9. 9.

    You got me smiling, Eric.

    You’re right. There’s no question “our” team is playing better ball. That is evident in the W/L record. And, no question, wins are always better than losses.

    But, even weak teams have their runs of success, and this may turn out to be exactly that. If this team gets into the playoffs, and loses in the first round again, there will have been very, very little accomplished.

    I have high standards, Eric. It’s amazing how fans are all jacked up about a team that remains below .500, which really is a mark of a middling team. And, middling teams don’t usually inspire their fans come playoff time.

    As fans, we must always expect a high level of effort and performance, especially considering the market in which we live. For years, Raptors’ attendance has been in the Top 10, but performance has fallen way, way short of that level.

    I realize there are four excellent teams in the East, who will likely advance into the second round of the playoffs. But, it’s high time that Raptors’ management find a way – any way – to get this team to that level.

    Anything less is unacceptable.

    - brento.
  10. 10.

    My friends and I could not believe that Chris Bosh would pass to anyone on the raptor team at the end of a game. Has he finally realized that basketball is a team game. He does not have to be “THE MAN”. Did the comment by Gary Payton have something to do with this. If he has changed then the Raptor fans should be very excited. The team may find success.

    - Excitedraptorfan
  11. 11.

    Just for interest sake I wonder how many under .500 teams Boston, Orlando, and Atlanta, and Cleveland have beaten so far to pad their win totals. And how their fans are discounting those as not valid wins.

    This is the NBA folks, its not easy to win. It’s not who, or how, It’s HOW MANY till you get to the playoffs.

    Once you are there it’s a new game as Chicago proved last year, anything can happen.

    - Johnn19
  12. 12.

    Same to you, Lanny.

    Frankly, I don’t care about Miami. They’re about as irrelevant in the East picture as Toronto. I doubt either team makes noise in the playoffs. And, based on “talent”, Miami should not finish ahead of the Raps. Unfortunately, as we well know, talent does make a team. We’ve seen our team play lazy, uninspired ball for over two years and it’s talent level is doing little to help it’s cause.

    “Winning” sports cities (like Boston, NY, LA, Chicago, Detroit) don’t get excited about making the playoffs, or finishing above .500. Nor should we.

    Debating who is stronger between Miami and Toronto is only marginally more relevant than the ridiculous discussion, earlier this week, of which team between Charlotte and Toronto is better. That anyone devoted a moment of thought to that debate, astounded me.

    - brento.
  13. 13.

    Ditto… Brento, ditto…

    I agree. Let’s set our sights higher people…

    - Jules
  14. 14.

    Johnn19 — your comments make no sense, whatsoever.

    Of course, Boston, Orlando, Cleveland and Atlanta have been beaten the majority of the weak teams in the conference!! But, they’ve ALSO beaten the majority of the good teams, too.

    Hence, their excellent records!!!

    When a team beats bad teams, and lose against good teams, it usually finishes around .500. And, typically, the team loses in the first or second round of the playoffs.

    Which is EXACTLY what happened to Chicago last year.

    THEY LOST IN THE FIRST ROUND!

    So, what’s your point? Some average or bad teams can sneak into the playoffs and then lose to a top tier team?

    Don’t we already know that?

    - brento.
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