It’s Raining In New Orleans!

Posted on November 6, 2009 | 4 Comments

So, tell me, who is this Jose fellow?

Calderon Drives on HornetsYes, Jose was able to survive the lynch mobs by Raptor fans, as well as the calls for Triano to park him on the bench, to put together a game that people expected of Jose before the season started. In fact, if he finished the season with the stats he got tonight, I wouldn’t be surprised. 16 points (6-11 fg, 2-4 3fg), 8 assists, 4 rebounds, 1 steal and 0 turnovers. It wasn’t a spectacular game, but I think everyone hopes it means that the real Jose is back. He looked comfortable right from the started, played with confidence and even showed some of that feistiness we’re so used to seeing from him. It was nice to see.

Poor Chris Bosh had an off night against the Hornets, with season lows for rebounds, free throw attempts and field goal attempts. Of course, he also played a season low 30 minutes because the Raptors were so far ahead that he sat much of the fourth quarter, which is good because they play Dallas tomorrow night.

Bosh Scores On HornetsOh, and he didn’t miss a shot from the field, including a 3 pointer which continues his perfect record from that range for the season.

Bosh was a beast, yet again, scoring inside almost at will against whoever the Hornets sent at him. And although it was sometimes uncomfortable to hear Matt Devlin and Jack Armstrong constantly confess their man-love for Bosh, they weren’t wrong. He’s currently playing at an MVP level. Now the question is whether he can sustain it this time. The extra muscle will help, and I’m guessing so will the additional talent around him.

Speaking of the talent around him, everyone chipped in on this win. Bargnani struggled from the field, as I said he might, but, more importantly, rebounded the ball, grabbing 9 rebounds. He also chipped in with 3 of the Raptors 14 three pointers during the game, including a team record 8 in the 3rd quarter. Seven different Raptors made at least one three pointer, and only Antoine Wright made under 50% of them.

The Raptors even `held’ Chris Paul to just 21 points. And believe it, or not, Calderon had a lot to do with that. Of course, Paul dished out 18 assists. The most astounding thing is, though, that Chris Paul either made or assisted on all but ten of the Hornets field goals. Think this team would survive without him? The Raptors exposed just how little depth and talent this team has, with only three players getting into double figures. The Raptors only had four, but also had two players with 9 points.

It wasn’t all good, for the Raptors though. Although they did play pretty good defense, they did allow the Hornets to shoot 48%. Of course, during the decisive third quarter, when the Raptors took control, they held New Orleans to only 6 field goals and 14 points, and stopped Paul from scoring at all. They can play defense, when they need to. Plus, the fourth quarter, when the outcome was no longer in doubt, the Hornets starting hitting their shots.

So the Raptors start off their big road trip on a great note. And, the Raptors are above .500, and so am I with my predictions.

LOOKING AHEAD

Marion In A Different Uniform (Again)Tomorrow night (tonight for most who read this), is Dallas and a much tougher test. They’re coming off a loss against New Orleans, they’re deeper and more talented than any team the Raptors have beaten, so far, and they don’t match-up all that well against them. Both Dirk and Shawn Marion have the ability to guard Bargnani on the perimeter, and Bosh on the inside. And Jason Terry is the type of guard that causes problems for them.

On the plus side, they don’t have Josh Howard, who would allow the Mavericks to play small, and not be at a disadvantage defensively. And without him, they aren’t the high scoring team they have been, in fact they haven’t won a game yet where either team scored over 100 points. Since the Raptors haven’t scored BELOW 100 points, yet, this works in their favour.

Still, after back-to-back wins, and the game being the second of back-to-back games, it will be a very tough night against a Dallas team that should improve on their 50 wins from last season. I wouldn’t get my hopes up if you’re a Raptor fan.

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Join the discussion: 4 Comments

Comments

  • renato

    Dirk has never been able to guard BArgnani or anybody. His defense has always been suspect. Actually BArgnani has had often very good results in guarding Dirk. Not sure if this team is more talented than, let’s say Cleveland

  • http://www.gnolithic.com LC009

    I think the outcome of this game will be decided by two key factors (because the Mavs are likely to play small for 24-20 minutes):

    1) First and foremost, how well our back-court will do against JJ Barea, Jason Terry, and Rody Beaubois. These guys are either fast or ridiculously fast. We need to contain them.

    2) How well Bosh & Bargs exploit mismatches. Bargs is too fast and too good a shooter for Dampier, and should be able to post up the much smaller Marion. If Bargs tries to play an outside game against Marion, this game will be Turnover-ville. If Bosh might have a tough time trying to muscle his way around with Dampier on the floor, so we need him to draw as many fouls as possible.

    If we can do a solid job on #1, and a good-to-great job on #2, we can win this game.

  • http://www.wearingfilm.com Tim W.

    Yes, Bargnani has given Dallas problems in the past. You’re right. I think the addition of Marion will help them, though.

    And I think, with Josh Howard, the Mavs are much more talented and deeper than Cleveland, it’s just that Cleveland has that guy on the team. I can’t remember his name. If you switch Dirk and LeBron, they’d be favourites for the Championship.

    I can’t see Dampier playing a lot of minutes. I figure they’ll go small most of the time, because he can’t really guard either front court player. I’m guessing he’ll start off on Bosh, but then move to the bench fairly quickly.

    I think the Raptors have a chance to win, but I just think they’ll have a much tougher time tonight.

  • http://mediocreforever.blogspot.com Shayan

    There couldn’t have been a better game for Jose to silence the hate on him than against cp3 on the road. Loved that little trash talking between them after JC drew the charge.

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