Raptors' Rapid Recap - Cleveland Cavaliers 104 - Toronto Raptors 96


-No Andrea Bargnani, no Leandro Barbosa, no Amir Johnson...but the Toronto Raptors were playing worst team in the league so this was a win right?

You'd think so but thanks to an atrocious first half, the Raps were downed by the Cleveland Cavaliers, 104 to 96.

-It was all Cavs early as they pumped in 60 points in the first half.  Remember, this is coming from one of the league's most woeful offensive clubs so that speaks volumes as to how bad Toronto's D was.  On top of this, the Raps couldn't find the bottom of the bucket shooting under 40 per cent and finishing with only 40 points after one half.

-The team turned things around late though after a brief dust-up between James Johnson and none other than Joey Graham, and Toronto got as close as five points late in the fourth.  However the same issues that plagued the team early in the match reared their ugly heads and did Toronto in, in the end.  These issues included sketchy shot selection and a lack of ball movement on O, but it was the team's ability to stop Cleveland's penetrating guards like Baron Davis that really put the final nail in the coffin.

-Davis had 19 points, 12 assists and 3 steals in only 30 minutes of play while his backup, Ramon Sessions, had 15 himself.  Davis' ability to slice up the Dinos led to much bigger issues, especially early in this one, as the Raps were forced to double, leaving Cleveland bigs like JJ Hickson and Ryan Hollins open for easy looks.  Hickson was a monster all night finishing with 28 points and 10 rebounds.

-The Raptors were led by Jerryd Bayless, who took the bulk of minutes from an extremely rusty Jose Calderon, and who finished with a team-high 28 points off the bench.  In fact it was Bayless' offence and grit that almost single-handily pulled the Raps back from the dead and he got some nice help from Sonny Weems, who had 17 off the pine as well.  In fact Toronto's bench had 54 points and were really the only spark in a game where DeMar DeRozan struggled from the jump.  He finished with 17 points, but on 7 of 17 shooting.

-While this loss could certainly be classified as embarrassing, in the end it was quite necessary in terms of lottery seeding.  The Washington Wizards were smoked 136 to 112 by the Indian Pacers and the Sacramento Kings are currently locked into a tough match with the San Antonio Spurs.  The L then keeps Toronto in step with Wiz, who they've split the season series with.  

The Raps now get a day off before another slew of games within a short time frame and if you're looking for a lottery balls, you're hoping they end up being losses too.

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