Raptors at Sixers, game-day Dino-bytes
Our post-shootaround look at tonight’s Raptors game.
TORONTO (14-25) at PHILADELPHIA (16-23)
Wells Fargo Center
TIPOFF: 7 p.m.
TV: TSN2; RADIO: FAN590
WEB: Join The Star’s Doug Smith for an in-game blog beginning just before 7 p.m.
Toronto: Jose Calderon, DeMar DeRozan, Landry Fields, Ed Davis, Aaron Gray; Philadelphia: Jrue Holiday, Jason Richardson, Evan Turner, Thaddeus Young, Lavoy Allen.
Key backups tonight
Toronto: Kyle Lowry (hometown kid’s been on a roll the last five quarters), Terrence Ross (hasn’t had an impact on a game in a while); Philadelphia: Nick Young (he scores with ease most nights), Spencer Hawes (provides about 10 points a game off the bench.
Sixers lead, 2-1
Toronto won the last game decisively after a couple of hiccups earlier in the season; Sixers, at least coach Doug Collins, were miffed at a late-game Toronto basket the last time out.
A tight all-time series, Raps are 33-34 vs. Philly and 16-18 here.
What happened this morning?
Same old, same old
Couple of shootarounds but with little hard news surrounding either team, they were entirely uneventful. The Raptors have been talking about playing hard and taking nothing for granted, a practice they’ll have to put into place tonight against the struggling Sixers.
If either coach is contemplating lineup moves, they are keeping them close to the vest; don’t see what either team might do anyway.
Worth thinking about?
The first tie-breaker between teams with the same record at the end of the season is the head-to-head record; if Raptors win, the season series will end tied, if they lose, Sixers have first tiebreaker.
Esoteric stat of the day, Part 1
Kyle Lowry has 47 points in 49 minutes over the last two Raptors games.
Not sure how far it extends to the players but that finish to the last game, and the fact the Sixers pretty much caved in on that game in the middle of the second half, could give this one a bit of an edge.
Players tend to remember recent beatings administered; the Sixers could be expected to come out rather forcefully.
Dwane Casey has been preaching the need to meet force with force every game; this could be a true test of his team’s resolve.
Slow news day?
The locals woke up to read yet another Andrew Bynum story in the papers today.
With that said, there is no current update on Valanciunas (who was to miss 4-6 weeks at Christmas; Bargnani, who was always out "indefinitely" or Kleiza, who is still bothered by a sore knee.
Here’s one for you
In the three games this season between Toronto and Philadelphia, each team has scored 271 points. According the Sixers PR staff, Toronto has three more two-point field goals, six fewer free throws and they’ve made the same number of three-pointers.
Esoteric stat of the day, Part 2
Toronto’s 0-4 on the road against Atlantic Division opponents this year with two losses at Brooklyn, one each here (I'm in Philly) and in Boston.
The men in charge
Ron Garretson, Leroy Richardson and James Williams toot the whistles tonight.