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Careless Raps Can't Continue Winning Ways Against Blazers
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Blazers 101 87 Raptors
Jay Satur
February 24, 2010
Air Canada Centre
Toronto, ON

The Raptors finished the first half on a 13-2 to cut the Portland lead to six and they continued to trim that lead down after the break. Amir Johnson's hook shot cut the Blazers' lead to just 64-63 with 4:47 remaining in the third, but Portland rattled off a 14-5 run to end the quarter and restore a double-digit advantage. The Raptors didn't get within seven points the rest of the way.

The absence of Bosh due to an ankle sprain was a factor, but it was more of a sub-par team effort that defied several things this team has done well more often than not since mid-December .


With solid performances spread throughout the Blazers' lineup, the starting backcourt of Andre Miller (18 points, 10 assists, seven rebounds) and Brandon Roy (20 points, five assists, five rebounds) was particularly troublesome for the Raptors.

"Post-ups, isos (isolations), whatever; we tried different guys on them, we tried different looks and we couldn't stop them," said head coach Jay Triano. "They were better than us tonight."


If there's a silver lining to be found in Wednesday's game, it's the continued 'resurgence' of Hedo Turkoglu, who finished with 24 points (8-9 FGM-A, 3-3 3PT FGM-A), four rebounds and three assists.

Turkoglu has been putting in plenty of extra work of late and it certainly appears to have paid off. He's gradually increased his scoring output with improved shooting from the floor in three straight games.


"I thought we were playing schemes more than we were with our energy. We didn't make second effort plays; the late close outs or the securing of rebounds. It wasn't a lack of effort, that jump we usually get, that second burst of energy just wasn't there. They were more physical, shot the ball better, took care of the ball better than we did and they were better defensively; it is tough to win games when you have that."

- Jay Triano on his team's intensity.


Fri., Feb. 26 vs. Cleveland
7:00 PM ET (theScore, FAN 590)

It doesn't get any easier for the Raptors, as they begin a stretch of three games in four nights against the Cavaliers at ACC. It also remains to be seen if Chris Bosh (ankle sprain) will be back in the lineup for the third of four meetings with the Cavs this season. Toronto won 101-91 on opening night at home, while the Cavs earned revenge with a 108-100 victory in Cleveland on Jan. 16. Andrea Bargnani looks to continue his success this season against the Cavs (23.5 points, 60% FG).

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The Numbers
3 Consecutive wins for the Blazers over the Raps
17 Portland points off 16 Toronto turnovers, versus seven points off eight turnovers allowed by the Blazers
20 Consecutive games with over 100+ points for the Raptors, a streak which was halted on Wednesday
20-14 Fast break points favouring the Blazers
18 Number of assists for the Raptors, their lowest total since Jan. 28 at New York (16)
They Said It...
Hedo Turkoglu "I don't look at it that way. I just tried to do my best, get myself going and try to help the team get a "W". I wasn't thinking like that at all. I wish we could have finished with a "W" and I could have felt much better."
- Hedo Turkoglu when asked if he showed Portland why they wanted him last summer.
Nate McMillan "Well, coming off a back-to-back, I thought we had some heavy legs but the focus was there. We didn't want them to get off to a good start because they are a team that are really tough to play against if you allow them to get off to a good start."
- Blazers head coach Nate McMillan on his team's win
Jarrett Jack "They got the game at their pace. They did a tremendous job of hitting their shots and we weren't able to run out as much as we like."
- Jarret Jack on the Raps falling short of 100 points