Raptors Rewind- King James Court Edition

You may have heard Cleveland is undefeated at home. So if I were to say anything to suggest the Raptors can win this game who would believe me? I would not even believe me. It is safe to the Raptors are desperate want some proof? How bout a return of the big 3 line-up to start the game. HELLO and I am not talking Jack Armstrong. This line-up has had little to no success and Bargnani is being moved to the 3 spot. What in the name of hell is going on with this team. It is not that I am upset Jamario Moon has been put to the bench. That part should happen and should have happened already. This is a big moment in the history of the Dino Nation Blog right here. JOEY GRAHAM should start. That is right I said, The Dino Blogger, James Borbath, that Joey should start. That is not to say I have changed my mind about Joey. I still will be happy to see him go at the end of the season. However that being said he has shown effort when many others have not. He has been active and we see more Good Joey than Bad Joey lately. It also speaks to how bad I think Jamario Moon has been and how much I hate the big 3 line-up. It is not effective and it just basically screws up about the only thing that has been a minor success about this season. That is the development of Andrea Bargnani and moving him to the 3 spot to allow J.O back in the starting line-up serves no purpose. J.O is not part of the long term future of this team and Bargnani clearly is. So why do this? It makes on sense and that is about par for the course this season. wonder if Lebron tries to top Kobe and his 61 points the other night. Sad to say but I think it is possible. Anything under 61 would be a minor victory. Do I sound upset? Sarcastic? yeah maybe but I have so little expectations for this team now it really is not funny.

1st Quarter

Away we go and victory 23 for the Cavs on their home floor unless something totally unexpected happens. We will all be witnesses or victims as the case maybe. There is a flu bug that is going around the Cavs locker room but King James is healthy and ready to go in the throw back yellow and red uniforms and Raptors are in the white and red. Cavs win the tip. A three ball for Wally world and that is the start you sure did not want to see as Raptor fan. Bosh turnover on Raps first possession and a ditto on that not wanting to see point. Another Wally Z make from 3 pointland. Oh yeah this big 3 line-up was a great idea. Mo Williams scores and Cavs are off to an 8-0 start. Chris Bosh makes a jumper and Lebron James as an answer with a nice set up from Mo Williams. Bosh makes another basket after a turnover early he is 2-2. But the defense is non existent with this horrible line-up. Raptors playing zone in this set up. James cuts through the zone with ease and Cavs making it look easy. Bargnani and Parker get back to back baskets to pull the lead to 14-8.

Chris Bosh makes another jump shot and he scores his third basket again. Lebron James scores plus a foul on Calderon and lead is back up to 17-10. Bargnani fires up an air ball and this has all the elements of the long night at the office I expected it to be. Lebron James makes a 3 pointer and can we please end the insanity of this stupid gimmick line-up already? Cavs are up 10. Raptors respond with 2 points. King James answers running through J.O and scoring and a foul. Lebron would make the foul shoot and he had another 3 pointer next time down the floor. He has 16 now by the way. That 61 comment of the top is not looking so crazy or sarcastic now is it? James is human though as he missed a fading jumper for 3. But no worries for Cavs the Raptors miss and Gibson and Mo Williams have back to back 3 pointers. The score is 32-14 with 2:26 remaining still in the first. Make it 3 straight, 3 pointers for the Cavs as Gibson hits another. Moon had checked in and fires up an airball. Hickson the Cavs rookie gets a score and it was only a 2 pointer. Cavs up 37-14. Raptors can't make a shot and this is flat out awful. Wow Jamario Moon drove the basketball amazing. He is fouled and heads to the line. He splits a pair. Can we trade him to the globetrotters? While I look up if that is legal under the CBA. Your score after 1 is Cavs 37 and Raptors 14. Bad just is not nearly good enough for what I was witness to in that first quarter.

2nd Quarter

Cleveland shot 60% and Raptors shot 33% need I say much more? Bosh back in and gets a score. Wally Z turns Jamario Moon into a statue as he drove to the hoop for a score. Bosh scores again but he was the lone Raptor going good. Jason Kapono with a rare 3 pointer for him. Raptors still down a ton with the score 39-22. The winner of the Carlito look a like contest for 3 years running Anderson Varejao with a basket. A.P gets to the line and makes a pair. The body language of the Raptors is speaking volumes. I feel for Matt Devlin and Jack Armstrong because it is pretty clear they have a long night in the booth ahead of them. Bosh with a nice move to the basket. He is 6-7 and playing very well. The truth is not many others are joining the party. Cavs are scoring at a high level and have built a massive lead. J.O makes a jump shot and Cavs lead is cut to 15 points. James is chilling on the bench for all of this though it should be noted. Kapono fouls Gibson behind the arc. That is not good. Gibson made 2 of 3 at the line.

Bosh another basket but Mo Williams hits a 3 pointer to answer. The bad math of Raps scoring 2 and the Cavs scoring 3 is not going to work. J.O makes a jump and it was 48-34 Cavs. Joey G gets a basket working the glass and draws the foul. Raptors actually were back to within 11 points. But Big Z gets a bucket on the inside. Bargnani found his way to his line but only splits a pair. J.O with a terrible miss but apparently big Z caught a piece of him as the shot went off the side of the back board. J.O would get the call the next time and miss his first free throw and the second. Raptors complain a lot about not getting calls but when you are a bad basketball team you don't get calls. It just doesn't happen. Invest the energy in playing better. Lebron James scores a basket. Jack Armstrong is laying the wood to Steven A Smith. That is why I love Jack Armstrong. Preach on coach. Meanwhile Bosh was doing his part on the floor getting to the line. He makes a pair. Calderon another miss and he is 0-5 and looks awful again. If you are injured don't play Jose it really is that simple. James meanwhile a score and 1 and Cavs lead is back up 17. King James would make that 19 with another basket over Jose Calderon. At the Half the Cavs cooled off a bit but still have a huge 59-40 halftime lead.

3rd Quarter

You know is it asking to much to start a second half with some hope you can win? I mean that has not happened a lot lately let alone getting into the 4th quarter with a chance. I am pulling for Nathan Jawai to get some time but I would rather it be in more positive situations. Raps are up to a blazing 38% take away Bosh I would not even want to see the number. Cleveland has cooled to a 53% level. Nice play to start as Jose hooks up J.O for the easy score. Bosh missed a contested jumper that would have given Raps back to back scores. But a slow Cavs start and J.o would get another score. Bargnani missed a 3 pointer as the Raptors went away from what was working. Bosh is called for goaltending as he swatted away a Big Z attempt on it;s down word flight. Bosh makes up for it with a jumper. Big Z answers with a hook shot in the paint. James denys Bosh on a drive as he just stole the ball out of the air and took it the other way for a score. Calderon meanwhile remains scoreless and he really should not be in there because he is not healthy enough to be.
Mo Willams gets a drive and score and after a sleepy start the Cavs lead was back to 19 with the score 67-46.

Bargnani has had a rough night at the office as well. James and Graham went to the deck and James came up gimpy. That is not good news for the Cavs. Not saying it will cost them tonight but the Lakers who will be in Toronto tomorrow night make their way to Cleveland on Sunday. It has been rough times in NBA with Andrew Bynum and Jameer Nelson both suffering major injuries. James is back in though and Cleveland can breath a sigh of major relief. Credit to Andrea Bargnani as his jump shot was mia so he drove it to the whole and scored and got the and 1 foul. Joey Graham would make his way to the line and Raptors have chipped into the lead slightly. Cavs lead was 67-53 with 4:20 to go in the 3rd quarter. Joey Graham making a dunk and Raptors were down 13. Bosh would get a score in the paint. He and Graham were the only 2 guys bringing it on this night. Cavs still were up 11 points and it was not like you had any feeling they could not just flip the switch and step it up if need be. That being said the Raptors were at least getting effort from a couple guys that had not given up. I have always been hard on Joey but give him his due I will. He has been a different guy since Sam Mitchell has left. He is giving the best he has. Bargnani gets to the line and despite a terrible shooting night he had 9 boards and 10 points. Raptors were slowly getting back in it. Graham would score and the lead was down to 9 points. Think we will find out if I was right about Cavs having another gear they can shift too. J.O also had a quiet 15 point night going. Raptors back court of Calderon and Parker had struggled. A bizarre moment. J.O was fouled and at the line he made his shots but the refs said it should have been Parker shooting. Parker would miss both. That is weird. Raptors with a J.O jumper and the Raptors had cut the lead to 8. They almost made it 6 with a tap in at the buzzer.

4th Quarter

Impressive 3rd quarter but I am finding it really hard to believe the Raptors have a chance down 8 to the Cavs. The problem when you dig a big whole like the Raptors did the climb to get back to even is only half the job. Once you get there it is another issue to take and keep a lead. However Raptors still have not even completed the climb part. Gibson with a runner in the lane to start the 4th. J.O doing a good job getting to the line battling inside. he makes a pair at the line. Williams had a basket. But J.O scores in the paint he had 20 points wow he has now not so quietly had a nice game. Chris Bosh gets to the line with a chane to cut the lead to 6. But Bosh could only split a pair as James checked back in.

Cavs lead was 78-71. Raptors perimeter defense had been better but Gibson would find an open look behind the arc and make a big shot for Cavs. Bosh and Hickson trade baskets and Raptors still were behind with score 83-73. J.O would draw a charge on James and the Raptors were kind of hanging around but not really. Joey Graham had been doing good job on both ends and had match-up well on Lebron James. Bosh got a score on the inside. Joey would lay the wood on King James and it would send James to the line. James after 16 in the in first had 14 points since. Bosh tried to rip the rim down but would come up gimpy. He would remain in the game. For all those people wanting to throw Bosh under the Bus. Here is some food for thought. Do you think Bosh has had bumps and injuries. I bet he has but he has been out their going after it ever night.

James started to heat up and helped the Cavs build the lead back up to 15 points with the score 90-75. The Raptors in the end were burned by a bad coaching move to go with that big 3 line up and just could not over come the damage done. They did not give up and had a lot of fight. Which against the Bucks might have helped but the against the Cavs it wasn't going to matter. Also little to no production from the back court. Calderon would finally make a shot as he was 1-9. Parker and Kapono were also pretty awful. Calderon is clearly not right and not to beat a dead horse but with no legit back-up Raptors are forced to leave him out there when their is no reason he should be. Raptors remained down 15 points as Bosh would get hammered by his redeem team buddy Lebron James. Bosh would make both but time was clearly not on the Raptors side and a Wally World three ball would make it a 16 point lead with under 3 to play. After getting as close as 78-71 the Raptors had just 8 point since and the Cavs lead 95-79. We were playing this one out at the Q as the Cavs were going to remain undefeated at home. The Cavs take this one and they took care of business early and the Raptors could never recover. Cavs 101 and Raptors 83.

Raps/Cavs Boxscore

So that does it for another disappointing night of Raptors Basketball. Kobe Bryant coming off scoring 61 that should be ugly. Oh well talk with you tomorrow when I am likely less emotional.

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