A frustrating loss to an obviously inferior team for the Raptors tonight. Off-ball defense was a persistent issue all night, aiding the Nuggets as they went 12-for-27 from outside. Terrence Ross, headband and all, struggled mightily once again going 1-for-9 from the field in 17 minutes. And unlike Saturday's win in Washington, the final minute execution faltered despite the Nuggets trying to give the came away at every corner.
You can read a far more comprehensive re-cap from our Stephen Campbell, here. But here are a few quick quotes from Dwane Casey's post-game press conference.
On the leaky defense
Casey remarked before the game that the Raptors lacked the consistency a team needs to have to be dominant. He chalked a lot of the Raptors defensive woes against Denver up to the effort drifting once again.
Some of it was that Gallinari hit some tough shots. We got caught a couple times in rotations ... But again I don't think the entire game we made them feel us. Towards the end we did a little bit and we got some turnovers but we can't wait until that point. If you are serious about being a playoff team, and being a playoff contender, you have to make sure you are consistent in your performance, in your approach, in your energy, in your focus, whatever it is.
No arguments here. Toronto's wings and forwards routinely seemed to space out on their defensive assignments, allowing Will Barton and Danilo Gallinari and Darrell Arthur all kinds of time and space to launch threes - particularly in the first half.
On a potential shake-up of the starters
As a potential remedy to the troubling poor starts that keep piling up, could a potential change in the starting unit be in the cards, coach Casey?
We've got to get on a level of play that we decide we're going to play at from the start of the game to the end of the game. We can't wait until we get out teeth kicked in before we start to play ... Whether we change the starting unit, or change whatever the rotation is just to get that jump start, we've got to do it because it's just too many games in a row now that we get out and dig ourselves a hole.
Interesting. I noticed in the HQ Twitter mentions tonight (apologies if I sucked running the acciount) that some people were calling for Patrick Patterson to slide in for Scola in the starting five. That's one possibility. I'll dive more into some potential starting groups tomorrow as well.
Try not to let this one keep you up. Many a team has fallen to the power of Will Barton this season... well, maybe that's an exaggeration.