Sunday, April 29, 2012

Raps Wrap: April 22-26

Game 64 - @ Detroit (L 76-73 / 22-42 / streak L3) Sunday April 22, 2012

After Linas Kleiza's three brought the Raps back into the game in the final two minutes, a controversial call may have cost the Raps this game. With 28 seconds remaining, Alan Anderson drove to the basket and hooked a shot from the right baseline that was blocked on it's way down by Detroit centre Greg Monroe. Replays of the block showed that it clearly should have been called goaltending, and would have given the Raps a 75-74 lead. Anderson then missed a step-back three and a wide-open Linas Kleiza could not force overtime at the buzzer as the Raps fell to the Pistons. Ben Gordon scored 15 fourth-quarter points and finished with 19. DeRozan led the Raps with 16, but didn't play in the fourth quarter.

Raptor Highlight of the Night; DeRozan throws it down through traffic 

Ben Uzoh scored a triple-double to lead the Raps to a win in their final game
Game 65 - @ Milwaukee (L 92-86 / 22-43 / streak L4) Monday April 23, 2012

The Bucks needed a Philly loss and a win over the Raps to keep their playoff hopes alive, but when they found out midway through this game that the Sixers had clinched it took some of the wind out of their sails. The Bucks won anyway. DeMar got tossed from the game halfway through the second quarter after he tossed the ball the length of the court, upset that the referee had called his previous offensive attempt a traveling violation. James Johnson scored 22 points and grabbed 13 rebounds, but the Raps committed 21 turnovers in the game.

Raptor Highlight of the Night; Ben Uzoh to Amir Johnson for the dunk off the inbound play

Game 66 - vs Nets (W 98-67 / 23-43 / streak W1) Thursday April 26, 2012

This game should have been anti-climatic,  but it was a hell of a lot of fun for Raptors fans. Never mind the whole "Fanapalooza" theme that someone in Toronto dreamed up, it was Toronto's bench players that shone in a blowout victory to end the season. The Raps rolled seven deep in their last game and killed it all night long starting the game up 17-2. Jamaal Magloire started after making a speech to the crowd, but played just five minutes, and James Johnson sat the entire second half meaning a team of Ben Uzoh, Alan Anderson, Gary Forbes, Ed Davis and Solomon Alabi crushed the Nets. Anderson, Forbes and Davis all finished with 20+ points, Solo rolled with 11 points and 19 rebounds, and Ben Uzoh scored the first Raptor triple-double since 2001, with a line of 12 points, 12 assists, and 11 rebounds. For Toronto fans, they had something to cheer for in the last game of the year and promise that next year with the team fully stocked, the Raptors could make some noise. The Nets, meanwhile, have played their last game under the New Jersey name and will move to Brooklyn to start the next season. So, yes, Raptors fans, it could be worse. What a year. That's a (W)Rap.

Raptor Highlight of the Night; Solomon Alabi blocks MarShon Brooks in transition

The Off-Season Ahead

April 29 -- NBA Draft Early Entry Eligibility Deadline (11:59 p.m. ET)

May 30 -- NBA Draft Lottery

June 18 -- NBA Draft Early Entry Entrant Withdrawal Deadline (5:00 p.m. ET)

June 28 -- 2012 NBA Draft

July 11 -- NBA Teams May Begin Signing Free Agents

July 13-22 -- NBA Summer League (Las Vegas)

July 27-Aug. 12 -- 2012 Summer Olympics (London, England)

(Uzoh image via Toronto Star)

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