USA TODAY Sports
The Raptors are fresh off a needed-win against the Charlotte Bobcats and host the streaking Miami Heat this afternoon.
The Heat are currently on a 21-game winning streak and will go for number 22 today in Toronto. Only three teams have won more than 20 games in a single season and this game is not going to be a walk in the park for the Raptors.
Will a Raptors’ win end the Heat’s winning streak and in the process become the number one story on all major North American sports networks tonight? Here’s what needs to be done for that to happen:
1) Amir Johnson: Johnson has more or less been the MVP of the 2012-13 Toronto Raptors. He had a career night against the Bobcats, scoring 12 points and hauling down a remarkable 21 rebounds, eight of which were of the offensive variety. He’ll likely be tasked with guarding Chris Bosh for large portions of today’s game and the former Raptor will have his hands full trying to contain Johnson’s energetic style of play.
2) LeBron James: LeBron James made an appearance at the Foot Locker across from the Eaton Centre on Saturday afternoon. Within seconds the word spread over Twitter and a police-controlled crowd had formed outside the newly-opened ‘House of Hoops.’ The crowd began a few MVP chants and were willing to stand outside in the cold just to get a glimpse of the Heat small forward. That pretty much tells one everything they need to know about James’ current level of play. Have fun out there, Rudy Gay.
3) Big or Small?: The Heat are notorious for closing out games with James playing power forward and Bosh playing centre. Team are forced into making a decision. Do you play small and try and beat them at their own game? Or do you play two big men and force them to adapt to you’re style of play. In a recent game against the Knicks, Mike Woodson opted to go small. The Heat closed out the game and cruised to another win. If the Raptors are within striking distance than Dwayne Casey will have a decision to make.