Boston: 99.2 points/100 possessions (19th)
Toronto: 94.0 points/100 possessions (27th)
Boston: 95.7 points/100 possessions (4th)
Toronto: 99.9 points/100 possessions (17th)
Probable Toronto Starters: Jose Calderon (PG) Jerryd Bayless (SG), DeMar DeRozan (SF), James Johnson (PF), Amir Johnson (C)
View from the Opposing Bench: Raptors Republic
This one has the potential to be nasty/entertaining if the Celtics decide to enact any kind of physical revenge against the Raptors for injuring Rajon Rondo last time out. It could turn into a blowout. It also has the potential to be a deadbeat SEGABABA with Boston bricking jumpers and playing just enough defense to let Toronto hang around till the fourth quarter. There’s probably a third option but I’d bet on one of those two.
Also, in case the bait above didn’t get you to click, I’m embedding the youtube clip of this Bargnani all-star promo from The Basketball Jones. It’s one of the most joyful things about the Raptors these days, besides that weird hologram and the joyfully creepy alternate Raptor mascot. Actually, I’m going to give you that one too.
It’s a cakewalk!
The Raptors return to Boston without Bargnani, which will probably cripple their already-terrible offense. Bayless, who never seems to be healthy against Boston, could cause some problems, but beyond that, DeRozan is having a brutal year, and there’s not much shot creation on this team. A modicum of effort on rotations and closeouts should pin the Raps to the perimeter and allow Boston to rebound and run. On top of that, if the Celtics move the ball like they did against Cleveland last night, this Raptors team will surrender good shots.
It’s a trap!
This one just begs for a half-hearted effort from the Celtics, who know Toronto is missing its best player, and who have the perfect offensive and defensive schemes to shut the Raps down — if they’re engaged enough to do so. If the C’s come out sluggish, it may be a grueling night and come down to effort and execution in the last five minutes.
Boston 97 Toronto 85