Where to Watch: Sportsnet 360
The Raptors gave away a game to the surging Nets last night, but with seemingly everybody who's a fan or media member around this team rooting for a matchup with the Wizards, does it really matter? Of course the team should want to enter the playoffs on a winning note, but more importantly the Raps need Kyle Lowry and Amir Johnson to be 100 percent. If that means losing a few extra games here in the last two weeks of the season and having to watch Greivis Vasquez get beat on defence by everybody then so be it. #WeTheFourthSeed right?
Anyways, on to tonight's matchup against Boston. After making a push for the 8-seed, the Celtics have fallen back out of the playoff race and are stuck in the absolutely terrible nine spot in the conference. There is hope for the Celtics to still sneak into the dance though, as they are only a half game back of the Heat, who may be without Dwyane Wade as he suffered a knee contusion against the Cavs on Thursday. With Boston fighting for their playoff lives the Raps have another challenge ahead of them tonight.
While the Raptors front court has the advantage (except for "Raptor Killer" Jared Sullinger), the backcourt and specifically the point guard spot is where the Celtics could take control of tonight's game. Isaiah Thomas is one of the quickest and shiftiest players in the league and he will be running circles around Greivis Vasquez, so the help defense on penetration into the paint must be present for the Raps to be able to get some stops tonight.
Rebounding has been another major fault of this team down the stretch, and with Amir listed as questionable, it will be on Jonas Valanciunas as well as Patrick Patterson and whoever plays the majority of the minutes between Tyler Hansbrough and James Johnson to secure the majority of the boards from the pesky Celtics front court.
Besides, Amir needs his rest tonight to gear up for "I Roll with Amir 5" his annual fan event in which he takes 50 loyal supporters out to dinner on his tab.
Enjoy tonight's game!