While that was a lot more fun than last Friday night's match versus the Indiana Pacers, the end result was the same for the Toronto Raptors, who lost a 125 to 118 decision to the Golden State Warriors in Oakland tonight.
Toronto held a seven-point lead going into the fourth quarter but the Warriors stormed back with a 42 point final Q which ended up being the difference in this one.
The loss is Toronto's fifth straight now, and it brings their record with Rudy Gay to 7 and 7.
For This :Loss, We Can Thank...
The Toronto Raptors.
It's hard to single out one player in this one, or one element so I'm leaving it as a complete team effort. Frankly, the club's composition is what enabled this one as by starting Andrea Bargnani, the Toronto Raptors rolled out three inefficient offensive options and expected that, paired with a porous defence, to defeat a fairly efficient offensive opponent.
It worked for a while when Toronto's shots were falling, but with the D not following suit, things fell apart in the final quarter when the Dinos couldn't hit with enough consistency to keep pace with the Dubs' scoring. The Raps hit only 8 of 29 field goals in that frame, and allowed the Warriors to shoot 57 per cent for the match, a tough combination to win games with.
He wasn't the club's top scorer, but check this stat line:
He had 23 points in only 32 minutes, and that was on perfect 10 of 10 shooting from the field. If that wasn't enough for you, then how about 15 rebounds, TWELVE of these, on the OFFENSIVE END!!
Throw in two blocks and he was the reason this one was as close as it was. His 12 offensive boards stemmed the tide of missed shots from the likes of Gay and Bargnani, and while he wasn't perfect, he did enough inside to prevent the Warriors from completely dominating the painted area. (Both teams surprisingly finished with 48 points in the paint.)
Bryan Colangelo. It's just extremely hard to win basketball games when your three top offensive options require a ton of shots to score enough points to compete, and at the other end, don't negate their offensive inefficiencies by being above average defenders.
Bargs, Gay and DeRozan were actually pretty solid in the former respect tonight, scoring a combined 67 points on 53 shots, but they didn't contribute enough on D or in other areas, namely creating for teammates. The trio had five assists combined and often didn't show enough offensive savvy in terms of shot selection.
Comment of the game:
Jenge gets the nod again tonight for this beauty.
Matt and Leo Classics:
Oh Leo. Between getting Klay Thompson's height wrong and spouting the virtues of Andrea Bargnani in rhythm, it was a tough night again for these two.
But my personal favourite interchange was this:
Leo: "Draymond Green was such a big player in college and in the NBA, he's guarding DeMar DeRozan, he's just a wing, isn't that amazing!??"
And then finally, Matt: "It is...oh DeRozan with the basket!"
Poor Matt couldn't change the topic fast enough.
And as always, we'll have a full breakdown in the AM.
Good night all!