November 23, 2012 by bronasvalanciunas
Jack Armstrong has brought his A-moustache today. For those who are viewing the game on a different network, above the lip his moustache is a crispy golden-brown but as we round the corner of the handlebar, it moves through at least 3 shades of grey. It is complemented by his wide, watery eyes.
Toronto Starters: Andrea, Demar, JV, Lowry and Dominic “Ace in the Hole” McGuire.
An intelligent first possession ends in a calm hook from Jonas.
Detroit comes right back and scores, and then follows it up with a steal and an easy bucket from Greg Monroe.
Bargnani has started well here. A couple of good shots and he’s brought the game back to 6-6.
Both teams, being content with the 6-6 score line, agree to double it. 12-12. 6:16 remains in the 1st.
Some douche in my blogging room in cheering for Greg Monroe because Greggy’s on his fantasy team. I guess not all of us bleed Raptors red as profusely as I do.
Now 14-12 Pistons, Lowry gets a nice steal and passes it off to Demar. who shows his 20-20 vision and proceeds to drive to the hoop. Into 5 Detroit defenders.
Andrea then smoothly drives to hoop, but can’t put it away. JV gets the O-Reb, passes it back to Andy, who hits the jumper.
Another drive and Andrea’s shooting free throws. He’s brought enthusiasm and his shooting singlet today. World, beware.
Sadly, Dominic, Kyle, and Demar have been unable to help out on offense yet. The Raptors defense has also forced many a turnover this quarter but still keeps falling asleep allowing easy baskets. However, when you keep falling asleep that means occasionally you’re waking up. End of 1st: 21-20 Pistons
Calderon and bench brothers in for the start to the Second Quarter (they also got some action at the end of the first). Jerebko left wide open under the hoop for Detroit. Lay up. 25-24 Detroit.
Some more buckets are traded. Quincy Acy is shown cheering on the bench. Veritable proof that he exists. 27 each.
Will Bynum comes on the floor. He will give the Pistons the each if this game devolves into a tricep curl-off.
Explosive drive from Linas!! A collective golf clap from the room. Detroit now leads only by 1.
Goigeous pass from Amir into Ed Davis for the dunk-in. 31-31. Now 5 different Raptors have scored. We’re slowly starting to get more players involved, crucial since we need to let Andrea take a rest.
Stuckey hits a 3 to put Detroit back in the lead.
4:40 left in the 2nd quarter. Jonas, right after making a pretty hook shot, gains confidence and takes a long 2. Somewhere a child just saw that. Somewhere a child is crying.
Drummond is a fool to fall for a Jonas Valanciunas pump fake. He’s forced to foul JV and Jonas hits the free throws. 39-37 Pistons.
Amount of time spent by Matt Devlin and Jack Armstrong talking about their facial hair each game: Approx. 8 minutes. Still not enough.
The Pistons have starting destroying the Raptors with the points in the paint. Slow defense, slow mind as the crones say.
End of 2nd Quarter: Pistons 47-43 Raptors on the strength of inside scoring and rebounding, especially from Greg “Walking Double-Double” Monroe.
I did my finger shakes in the halftime break. Ready to blog. Live.
Note to Lowry: when you can’t hit any shots, don’t take contested 3’s. 49-45.
Detroit has come out reinvigorated. Hard love leads to hard defense. They force the Raptors into tough shots and are soon up by 10. Is this going to be the Raptors now standard quarter of horseshit? Only time will tell.
Brandon Knight just hit a wide-open 3. 63-50. On the Raptors end, Lowry keeps on trying to make things happen. He’s picked up his game in the third and continues to show “passion” and “effort”. If only the rest of the Raptors would follow. Lowry continues to do all sorts of enigmatic shenanigans. He’s pulled the Raptors to within 3. 65-62.
Brilliant Idea: The Raptors need to fill their team with more straight up assholes. It might not help them win, but it would help me enjoy the games.
Jonas has hurt himself but he keeps on hobbling and making plays. Desire. Emphasis on the sire.
Detroit keeps on hurting themselves with turnovers leading to Raptors baskets. The Raptors have done a better job holding on to the ball – except for Demar.
Monroe continues to make plays on Detroit’s end. He makes a nice pass to Maxiell for a powerful dunk.
The 3rd quarter winds to a close. Thanks to Lowry, it wasn’t the disaster that it could easily have turned into. 72-68 Pistons.
James Cybulski and Leo Rautins are really just a younger-looking, less quirky version of Matt Devlin and Jack Armstrong.
Ed Davis has had a decent game tonight. He opens the fourth quarter with a tough putback and collects the foul for a three-point play.
On the following play Davis gets another big o-reb to keep the possession alive. It leads to a Jose 3. Raptors up by 2.
Another intelligent Jose pass to Ed Davis. Davis goes for the dunk-in and gets the foul.
None of this good play has changed my opinion on Ed Davis.
Drummond gets a big offensive rebound, tries for the dunk, and gets fouled. Smashes the ball into the ground, and it almost comes back to hit him in the face. Then he misses both free throws. This sort of play will henceforth be know as… Classic Drummond.
Drummond does have a double-double this game though. He is 1-6 on free throws though..
Bargnani, though quieter in this second half, just stroked a three. We’re now up by 5.
Even crazier- Bargnani takes a charge!!! If only he always played with this emotional vigour.
Brandon Knight just came on and came back with a 3 of his own to tie the game at 82.
We come out of a time out and both teams go with their most effective plays of the day. Bargnani gets it and throws up a low-percentage shot. It’s his night though, so the shot goes. At the other end, Monroe and Drummond do some scrappy inside shooting and rebounding and Monroe gets the foul. The game is tied at 84.
DeRozan keeps driving, despite his weak performance. But this time… he passes it out to Andrea. FOR THE THREE!!!!!!! All hail the court vision of Demar DeRozan!! (I hope those sentences didn’t come off as sarcastic. Because they’re genuine.)
Kyle Lowry gets the ball and drives to the basket with less than a minute left. He makes it, but comes up limping and has to come out for Dominic McGuire.
36.8 seconds left: 90-89 Raptors: Raptors Ball: Timeout. Will the Raptors go with their infamous bench connection (Gray-Acy-Lucas)? No.
Raptors go with the same play as before, letting Lowry drive, but it doesn’t unfold as in Casey’s vision. Pistons ball with 16.1 seconds left.
Brandon Knight loses the ball on the dribble as he’s squeezing by a couple of Raptors. But he gets it back and hits the lay-up. Pistons by 1, 7.8 seconds left.
Kyle Lowry gets the ball for the final jumper, but he can’t get it to go. Pistons win.
Final Thoughts: Bargnani should have taken one of the last 2 shots of the game, given how hot he had been. Instead they were both given to Lowry, and the end result was another close Raptors loss.
Game Goat (an insult): Demar DeRozan. He couldn’t get his shot together at all today, and the burden was too much for the rest of the Raptors to handle.
Game Toad (quirky, but generally ineffective performance): Dominic McGuire. Usually a toad, but this time, he was the toad of the game. For me, the fact that he offers no offence should prevent his starting.
Game Bench (a compliment): Brandon Knight. He hit multiple big 3’s and hit a clutch game-winning shot.
Game Hex (player of the game): Andrea Bargnani: His best game of the season by a chunk. The most dangerous player of the game in a losing cause.
Final Score: Pistons 91-90 Raptors.