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Total Team Effort Puts Brakes On Pistons
Pistons 99 110 Raptors
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Jay Satur
November 4, 2009
Air Canada Centre
Toronto, ON

A game with big runs for both teams saw the Raps down by seven in the first, before roaring back with a 44-point second quarter. Detroit however, kept chipping away down the stretch and managed to pull ahead 91-90 on the strength of a 9-1 run.

But the Raptors mangaged to right the ship with 6:40 to play thanks to Jose Calderon, who hit a big three to regain the Raptors advantage. The Pistons wound up tying the game again at 93-93, but the undermanned visitors seemed incapable of churning out another run on the tail end of a back-to-back.


Bosh once again led the team in scoring, but Andrea Bargnani turned in his most impressive all-around performance of the season on Wednesday.

Il Mago should have had a big game on the glass against a Pistons team that went pretty small and to his credit, he took advantage of the matchup. Nine of his 22 points came in the fourth quarter, including four straight clutch free throws. The final frame also saw him time two swats perfectly on Ben Gordon and Rodney Stuckey. May not have been his most brilliant night in terms of scoring, but who wouldn't love to see that line consistently from the big man?


The entire bench brought energy and enthusiasm on Wednesday, but the play of Jarrett Jack truly stood out. When he entered the game in the first quarter, he quickly hit two driving layups and set up Marco Belinelli for a 3-pointer to help erase a seven-point deficit.

Later in the second, he built the Raptors' lead to 10 points after he drilled a three and electrified the ACC crowd with an over-the-shoulder bullet pass to a trailing Bargnani for a dunk. Jack also played some excellent defence, helping limit Ben Gordon to just nine points in the final two quarters.


Free throw differential favoured the Raptors 36-17 in this one and contributed mightily to a late 20-8 run that iced the game late. Bargnani drew two straight fouls on wiry rookie Austin Daye down low with five minutes to play and drilled all four ensuing free throws, turning a 95-93 lead into a two-possession game. Bosh and Turkoglu went on to reel off another five unanswered points from the line and ballooned the lead back to double digits.


"I commended our bench for the way that they played in the first half. Our bench was outstanding. I thought that they came in, they gave us energy, they ran up and down the floor, they got us stops and deflections. That was some of the best basketball that group has played and they earned themselves minutes in the second half because of that." - Jay Triano


Friday, Oct. 6 @ New Orleans
8:00 PM ET (TSN, FAN 590)

Wednesday's win couldn't have come at a better time for the Raptors, who now face a tough road stretch of seven of their next eight away from ACC. It begins with a trip to Louisiana for a date with Chris Paul, Emeka Okafor and the Hornets (2-3). New Orleans stumbled out of the gate with a 1-3 start, but are coming off an impressive 114-107 OT win over the Dallas Mavericks on Wednesday. New Orleans took both of last season's matchups against the Raptors.
By The Numbers
496 Number of consecutive games played by Tayshaun Prince of the Pistons, prior to his injury. It was the second-longest active streak in the league.
35 Number of points scored by the Raptors reserves on Wednesday -- the most production off the pine since the opener.
13 Number of wins the Raptors have in 50 tries all-time against the Pistons.
7 Number of Western Conference teams the Raptors will face on the road before Nov. 19.
44 Number of points scored by the Raptors in the second quarter on Wednesday.
They Said It...
Antoine Wright "I am talking to (Jarrett) Jack the whole time during the game. We knew we were going to have to come in against a team like Detroit and have that energy and keep guys out of the paint." - Antoine Wright
Amir Johnson "It is always fun to play against your former team and like I said, beat them. I talked to a couple team mates during the game and told them I was really going to go at them." - Amir Johnson
John Kuester "We have got to get people off of the foul line... Well improve in that area and another situation where we just cant dig ourselves a hole and have to fight so hard, and exert so much energy to get out of it. " - Pistons head coach John Kuester
Fantasy Alert
22.0 PPG, 5.0 RPG, 1.0 APG

Notes: As mentioned earlier, the best all-around game of the season from Il Mago. 22 points (on 8-16 shooting), 12 boards, two assists, two blocks, two threes and a steal. Big impact on both ends of the floor.
24.0 PPG, 4.0 RPG, 2.8 APG

Notes:Ben Godon's going to continue to get his opportunities with a pair of Pistons starters injured. His 30 points were a game-high and included two 3-pointers, two rebounds and four assists.