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Raps In Rear View Of Charging Bulls After Loss At ACC
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Raptors 104 88 Magic
Jay Satur
April 11, 2010
Air Canada Centre
Toronto, ON

The Raptors led for all of about 36 seconds in Sunday's pivotal tilt and saw the Bulls' five-point lead after one quarter double to a ten-point advantage by halftime.

Chicago then put it away after the break as its starters opened the third on 15-6 run that turned the game into a blowout. The Raptors aren't eliminated from playoff contention with their fifth straight loss, but they'll need substantial improvement at both ends of the floor if they hope to even stumble in to the post-season .


Joakim Noah seemed to feed off the boos from the crowd as he bounced out of the tunnel during warmups and proceeded to set the tone for his team in their biggest game of the season.

Noah was zeroing in on his first career triple-double by halftime with 10 points, 10 assists and six assists. With some recent limits on his minutes lifted as he plays through plantar fasciitis, the Bulls' energizer went on to tie a Raptors opponent season-high with 19 rebounds and dished out a career high-tying seven assists to go with 18 points.


Hedo Turkoglu struggled offensively after going two-for-12 from the floor for six points, but he had a monster night on the glass by matching a Raptors season-high and a career-best 19 boards. Turkoglu added nine assists and three steals.

"I thought he played with real good energy and rebounded the ball really well for us," said head coach Jay Triano. "We played him at the four tonight, so he was inside a lot more when Amir (Johnson) got into foul trouble. He is obviously going to be closer to the basket. He distributed the ball well, just didn’t shoot the ball well."


"They were better than us, obviously. They shot the ball much better; anytime you shoot 41 per cent you are going to struggle. It’s something that hasn’t happened to us a lot this year, but it did tonight. When we got into foul trouble with Amir (Johnson) early, that put us in a situation where we had to go a little bit unconventional with our matchups and that is when they pulled away."

- Jay Triano on the effort from his team.


Mon., Apr. 12 @ Pistons
7:30 PM ET (TSN, FAN 590)

The playoffs still remain a possibility for the Raptors, but they'll likely need to win out beginning with the Pistons on Monday to close out a back-to-back. If Toronto can win its two final games, it would need Chicago to lose one of its final two matchups (vs.BOS Tuesday, @CHA Wednesday) to finish with identical 40-42 records and get into the postseason by virtue of the tiebreaker. The Raps have ensured their first-ever season series win vs. the Pistons, but will go for the sweep on Monday.

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The Numbers
1.0 Bulls' lead over the Raptors for eighth in the Eastern Conference
41.1% Shooting percentage for the Raptors
.222 Combined shooting percentage for both teams from three-point range (eight-for-36).
26-17 Third-quarter scoring favouring the Bulls.
25 Biggest lead of the game for the Bulls
They Said It...
Sonny Weems "That shouldn’t even be the case. We can win without him or with him. It would have been great to have him tonight, but he is out and we can’t do anything about it. We have to step up."- Sonny Weems on playing without Chris Bosh.
Vinny Del Negro "I liked the way we started the game. I liked the way we came out in the third quarter focused and kind of put them back on their heels a little bit. Then they went to the zone and we kind of struggled for a few possessions and then we settled in a little bit." - Bulls head coach Vinny Del Negro, on hist team's effort.
Jarrett Jack "Nothing against the others guys, but it is just a different team now. We can’t use that as an excuse, we have more than enough talent to go out here and get these last two games and get into the postseason." - Jarrett Jack on playing without Bosh and Wright.