Shorthanded Raptors Rocked By Bulls
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December 15, 2010
TORONTO, ON (CP) --The youngest lineup in Toronto Raptors franchise history was no match for the Chicago Bulls.
Carlos Boozer scored a season-best 34 points and added 12 rebounds to lead the Bulls to a 110-93 win Wednesday over the Raptors, who were playing without starting centre Andrea Bargnani and point guard Jose Calderon.
With Calderon out for the fourth straight game with a sore left foot and Bargnani gone with a left knee injury, Toronto started a young lineup -- an average age of 22 years 239 days -- that included first-round draft pick Ed Davis making his first-career start in his ninth NBA game.
``It's tough,'' said Raptors coach Jay Triano. ``We knew that going into the game. We have to develop those guys, they have to play in this situation and it was good to give Ed his first start.''
Raptors point guard Jerryd Bayless, who scored 20 points, was disgusted by the ease with which the Bulls won.
``It's embarrassing,'' he said. ``And I don't like it. I'm not used to it. I'm not going to stand for it. We've got to get better.''
Leandro Barbosa led Toronto with 21 points off the bench.
Luol Deng added 19 points for Chicago (16-8), which won their seventh in a row while the Raptors (9-17) have lost six of seven.
Kyle Korver had 13 off the bench and Joakim Noah scored 11 to go with 11 rebounds for the Bulls.
It was announced after the game that Noah would have surgery for a torn ligament in his right thumb on Thursday and will miss the next eight to 10 weeks.
``I feel like I haven't been playing at a high level,'' Noah said. ``I had to take an anti-inflammatory every time I played and I can't practise. I have to get right and get back with this team. It's frustrating because I think we have a chance to be really, really good.''
``It's disappointing for Joakim but for us I'm confident in the ability of the guys that we have,'' said Bulls head coach Tom Thibodeau. ``So we know we have enough to win with.''
There was a big difference in experience and strength in the two lineups.
``It showed, too,'' Bayless said. ``I think they bullied us. And Boozer shooting 13-for-17, you can't win (allowing) that. I don't know, it's tough.
``They ran whatever they wanted to execute, they did what they wanted to do.''
Joey Dorsey grabbed a game-high 13 rebounds off the bench to go with 12 points, while DeMar DeRozan chipped in with 12 points. Davis had 10 points and 10 boards in 32 minutes.
``Ed's a rookie, we can't expect him to be an all-star right now,'' Bayless said. ``It's his first start. He played well but we have a long way to go. He does. I do. DeMar does. Everybody does.
``It's not fun losing like that. It's embarrassing especially on your home court. I'm not used to it. I don't want to be used to it. Nobody should want to be used to this.''
The Bulls out-rebounded the Raptors 47-37.
The Bulls led by 27 entering the fourth quarter. The Raptors fell behind by 28 before going on a 11-0 run early in the fourth capped by Barbosa's lay-up to make it a 93-76 game.
Julian Wright's three-pointer brought the Raptors to within 12 points in the final two minutes but they could get no closer and the game ended to a smattering of boos.
The Raptors came back from a 25-point disadvantage in the third quarter last Saturday to win in Detroit. But they never threatened to rally against the Bulls, especially without both Bargnani and Calderon.
Boozer's reverse lay-up with 5:44 left in the third quarter put the Bulls ahead by 27 points leaving no hint of any more dramatics.
Bargnani's injury was to be evaluated Wednesday night and it wasn't certain how long he might be out. Bargnani, who has been averaging 21 points a game, did not take part in Tuesday's shoot-around before the 97-91 loss in Charlotte but still scored 12 points in 28 minutes.
The knee was worse Wednesday morning.
Davis scored four points and had four rebounds in the first quarter but Boozer had eight points and four rebounds as the Bulls led 23-18.
``It was a learning experience,'' Davis said.
``It was sort of like a dream come true (making the start). I'm just trying to prove that the coach can depend on me and I'm not just a rookie and that I can play right away and I have to prove that in the practices and the games.''
The crowd booed late in the second quarter as the Bulls began to draw away.
Boozer extended the lead to 21 points with two successive driving layups. Dorsey made two free throws before Chicago point guard Derrick Rose restored the 21-point lead with a hook shot.
But Bayless scored the final two points of the first half on a driving hook shot and Chicago took a 63-44 lead into the intermission.
Notes: Bargnani bobble-heads were given to fans at the game. . . The Raptors entered Wednesday with an NBA leading 19.8 fast-break points a game. . . Forward Peja Stojakovic has missed 10 games with a swollen left knee. . . DeRozan is the only player to have started all 26 Raptors game this season. Bargnani started the first 25 before missing Wednesday's game with a sore left knee. . . The Raptors are home for their next three games and play New Jersey on Friday. . . Attendance at the Air Canada Centre was 17,750.