The end result last night was not a surprise to anyone or it should not have been. The fact the Raptors led after 12 minutes and were in the game at halftime likely was. The “we don’t need no stinking Bargnani movement,” was all smiles at the half as he sat this one out with a sore ankle. But the third quarter without Bargnani went like many games with him with Grizzlies coming out and getting to business and stepping up their game on both sides of the ball. They would win the quarter 33-14 and put the outcome of this game to bed. The Grizzlies would coast from there to a 103-82 win.
It is not an over reaction to say the Raptors season is pretty much on the line over the next few weeks. For all the people that were clamoring for Terrence Ross might see a ton of him soon if things don’t turn around. After a career high 19 he came crashing down to earth with just 8 points and going 0-6 from three point range. Not good at all. Honestly it really wasn’t a particular good night for anyone. Ed Davis who got the call to start with Bargnani out had 10 points and 6 rebounds which is not bad until we mention the 4 turnovers. Even DeRozan was at best average with one exception in this one. He had 16 points to lead the team. He was able to connect on two out three from beyond the arc but only got to the line 4 times making them all.
News was breaking that the Raptors could be very close to bringing in Mickael Pietrus. This would require the Raptors cutting someone to sign him. The likely candidate would be Dominc McGuire. Pietrus almost was a Raptor I believe it was a season ago. The Raptors had been reported to work out a deal with the Suns but something about the medical Pietrus took was not to the Raptors liking. This move is being considered because according to reports from ESPN Alan Anderson and Landry Fields are likely out for at least month longer. The Anderson projection does fall in line with what the Raptors have said. He was said to be out anywhere from 3-6 weeks. While Fields, is expected to have stitches removed and after that could not be re-evaluated for at least another two weeks.
Pietrus in his career has been able to make threes and is considered a decent defender. If he is in shape he could in theory jump right into the starting line-up. Will this solve all the Raptors problems? Far from it. It does at least give them potentially some production from the position. McGuire offers little offensively and Kleiza who started last night seems content to just chuck the ball at will and is not all that interested in playing a team style of game.
Ryan Wolstat from the Sun posted a quote from Kyle Lowry on the status of this team. Lowry said something to the effect the team is not dead but they are 5 feet deep. That is a correct analogy for where the Raptors are at as they have been digging their own grave on their playoff hopes at a rather rapid rate.
The Raptors have a MUST win on November 30, 2012. The Suns are up next and while the Raptors were getting beat by 21 in Memphis to the best team in NBA at the moment. The Suns were losing by 40 to the Detroit Pistons. The same Pistons the Raptors lost by just one to on November 23rd.
No win in this next one you legitimately ask when the next win will come with Raptors heading to the west coast which has never been particularly kind to them.