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Day 5: Raptors Keep The Insensity High In Vancouver



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Day 5: Raptors Keep The Intensity High In Vancouver

Jay Satur - Raptors.com
October 2, 2010

The Raptors were once again fervently working on defence Saturday as they officially opened the Vancouver portion of training camp and that display of intensity has not gone unnoticed.

Raptors GM Bryan Colangelo was quick to cite that high level of focus when asked what has impressed him the most after watching his team practise all week.

"Obviously you've got to monitor the injury status, a couple guys with some nagging issues," said Colangelo. "I think Leandro's got a sore back, Linas, who played a lot of games at the World Championship, has a nagging achilles. You've got some issues you've got to monitor, but I would say that overall, the level of play has been terrific for the first three days of camp."

"Now we come here for a fourth and it didn't stop with the long travel and everything that there might be a little bit of a lag but there was really no lag at all."

Head coach Jay Triano agreed with that assessment and has been happy with what he's seen so far.

"It's hard to say where we are because we're not playing against anybody else, but if we play with the intensity with which we're practising, it's going to be a good team."

It's a far cry from last season, where the head coach, GM and some of the players admitted that level of engagement just wasn't there across the board.

"No doubt about it, everybody's here," said Reggie Evans. "That's the difference. Everybody's participating."

Things should get even more intense with some fans in attendance on Sunday, when the Raptors split up for an open intra-squad game at 4 p.m. ET. I'll be covering all the action courtside with a LIVE CHAT. Hope to see you there.

Winning Vancouver Over

With Steve Nash's Suns taking on Triano's Raptors at Rogers Arena on Wednesday, Colangelo was diplomatic when asked which team he thought might have better fan support among Vancouverites.

"I've got to say, between Jay Triano and Steve Nash, we've got a little bit of a rivalry there,” said Colangelo. “Obviously, Steve is Steve and has done so much for the game here in Canada and so much for the game in general, I've had my own experience with him as you know, he's a terrific ambassador for the game, but also for this country. The people love him here obviously, it's home. But Jay's presence and the Raptors presence? There's a whole other element there. I think it'll be something somewhat equal."

Talking Scouting With Nori

One of the biggest duties for Raptors assistant coach Micah Nori is advanced scouting. After a wild summer of player movement that's radically altered the NBA landscape, Nori admits that impact players changing addresses or teaming up like in Miami can radically change preparation for an opponent. But it's names like Keith Smart, Tom Tibodeau and Monty Williams that are of equal or even greater concern.

"How it makes a difference for us on the advance side of things is, now with a guy like Stoudemire, who's much more of a roll to the bucket, attack the rim type guy, that might change a little bit how New York plays," said Nori. "(That's) versus David Lee, who's more of a spot up, pick-and-pop type guy. Then let's say you've got (Carlos) Boozer now in Chicago and obviously with him going there ... now you've got more of a post-up presence, that changes the plays. Why I say that is because Larry Brown has been running the same stuff in Charlotte that he ran in Detroit, that he ran in Philly. Rick Carlisle same thing. He ran the same things in Indiana and Detroit.

"So I would say that a little bit more than the player movement, the new coaches is what messes with the whole advance (scouting) thing. You don't have that library built up."

We've also got video from Saturday below, with Matt Devlin going one-on-one with Linas Klieza, Jarrett Jack.