Last Minute Thoughts...

Stan Van Gundy's off-season regimen before signing to coach the Magic...

Stan Van Gundy's off-season regimen before signing to coach the Magic...

Magic vs. Raps

Dwight vs. CB4

Hedo vs. Bargnani

Mitchell vs. Ron Jeremy

However you want to ID this series, it kicks off in a just a few hours.

Here are a few final things...

-After watching some amazing basketball yesterday, it became more clear to me than ever that this Orlando series in many ways could ID Chris Bosh. Simply put, he needs to be able to lead this club to victory. For those who saw San Antonio and Phoenix yesterday, you saw just how special Tim Duncan and Steve Nash are. Sure they have some great talent around them, but it was Duncan and Nash who time and time again made the big play and refused to let their team go softly into the night. Lebron did the same for his Cavs, and Chris Paul rallied his troops last night. These players showed the difference between being a good player, and a great one. Let's hope Chris Bosh can do the same thing starting this afternoon.

-I'm all for taking pride in your nation but did anyone else find the US Army's "did you know that a single missile can destroy all your communication and banking information" ads a bit much?

-Houston looks dead in the water already. Shane Battier stepped things up, but he didn't get much help as T-Mac looked incredibly frustrated. I'm not sure I see Houston winning a game as their offence is just non-existent at times. I'm actually picking Utah to head to the finals out West.

-Speaking of non-existent, anyone else think the Cavs took a step BACK with the Ben Wallace trade? Wally can't hit a shot, Mike Brown doesn't use Joe Smith enough, Wallace looks like a shell of his former self, and Delonte West just looks ok at the 1. The Wizards looked disorganized on offense themselves, and part of that seemed to be from not knowing who the go-to guy should be now that Gilbert is back. However I think Washington gets its offence together and unless Lebron scores 50 a game, the Cavs are in trouble.

-I'm worried about Toronto's offence today. I woke up this morning having had dreams of Bargnani jumpers that clanked off the rim, and Carlos Delfino worrying about his hair, and not taking the ball to the rim. Jamario, Carlos, Kapono - each of these guys needs to be a difference maker today even if it's only in small doses. Michael Finley yesterday showed his age on a five for 11 shooting night but he hit the big shots when they mattered most. Let's see if Toronto's inconsistent wings can do the same.

-Is the KFC chicken and biscuit bowl not the most disgusting fast food dish ever constructed? Mashed potatoes, corn, breaded chicken topped with gravy and shredded cheese? It's like poutine X 5! Everytime the ads came on yesterday I couldn't help but think that it was sort of like ordering a heart attack to go.

Sing-a-long time...

Sing-a-long time..."Heart attack, heart attack man..."

-Foul trouble played a big role in the San Antonio-Phoenix game yesterday and I think that will be the case for Toronto-Orlando today. If Rasho can keep out of trouble, and Toronto can get Dwight into it, it would be a huge advantage for the Raps. After Dwight, we're talking about guys like Adonal Foyle and Pat Garrity. The Dinos have at least 24 fouls to use for Howard in terms of Rasho, Andrea, Primoz, Hump and even a bit of Bosh if need be. And if the Raptors are down in the fourth, use them they should ala Greg Popovich's "hack a Shaq" strategy late in the game. Let's see how Sam Mitchell orchestrates things today...

...in just a few hours.

Go Raps.

FRANCHISE

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