Toronto Raptors Season Preview: Game 20

re: How an astute NBA observer might expect the first part of the schedule to unfold for the Raptors this year

Game 20 – at Atlanta [Wed Dec 02]











DeRozan *





Turkoglu $^


















Jack #



Teague *


Belinelli ^



Crawford ^


Wright ^





Evans ^





Nesterovic $



Smith-Joe $










Johnson ^



Collins $















Legend: ADV – Individual match-up advantage; * - 2009 NBA Draftee; ^ - Acquired via trade; # – Restricted free agent; #M – Restricted free agent, matched offer; $ – Unrestricted free agent; $R – Unrestricted free agent, re-signed; $^ – Acquired via Sign & Trade; Italics – Returning player; ? – Injured, status uncertain.

The Hawks are going to be a solid team in the EC this season. Adding a good PG from the 2009 NBA Draft [i.e. Jeff Teague], a multi-purpose Guard [i.e. Jamal Crawford] and a serviceable veteran Big [i.e. Joe Smith] improves their squad significantly; as does 1 more year of maturation with their core group [i.e. Joe Johnson, 28; Al Horford, 23; Josh Smith, 23; and, Marvin Williams, 23] together. The individual match-up advantages favour Atlanta … which will probably mean another road loss for the Raptors, in this back-2-back.

Raptors expected W-L Record: L, 7-13


PS. This marks the end of the “early season” phase for the Raptors.


Toronto Raptors Season Preview: Game 19, 18, 17, 16, 15, 14, 13, 12, 11, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2 and 1.

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14 Responses to “Toronto Raptors Season Preview: Game 20”

  1. bobby Says:

    hahahahahahahahahahahahahahhhahaha….the most ridiculous thing I’ve ever seen. I think you solved the equation so the NBA doesn’t have to play any more games…hahahahahahahahahhahahahahahahahahahah!!!!!

  2. rob Says:

    this is a bad reality show that needs to be cancelled.

  3. John Says:

    what a ridiculous post. Seriously grow up and get a life.

  4. khandor Says:


    Welcome aboard! :-)

  5. MC_B-rad Says:

    I do have to say one thing about these preseason matchups that you have done…they may well end up being true to form and the raps start the season 7-13…however, my point is this…do you honestly believe that basketball is a one on one game and you can therefore come to a conclusion/prediction about the outcome based on individual matchups? I like to think that bball is a team sport and therefore individual matchups are not a likely indicator of how it will play out….

    as for the rankings…i dont get how:

    jack (in his 4th??? year) is equal to a rookie, when at the same time johnson is twice the player (my assumption on what ->-> means) that DD is.

    Bosh being equal to smith is a joke…I dont think you would find one person that knows how to dribble a bball that would agree with that…and i am for sure not a bosh fan

    giving williams and turk a draw…i would say its close…but i think turk offers more and is better all around player

    and as for bargs and horford…if williams and turk is a draw and not a slight ad for turk, then bargs and horford are a draw with only (MAYBE) a slight ad for horford…MAYBE

    I do think the hawks are gonna be a good team this year…possibly the 4th seed…but to suggest they get the year of maturation and not also figure the raps “star” players would mature with age (since they are all relatively young, save for turk) is not being objective….which is my consistent arguement about anything you post

  6. James Says:

    MC_B-rad that was the most intelligent thing ever posted on this blog, bravo!

  7. khandor Says:


    Basketball is not the equivalent of five 1-on-1 games.

    Examining how specific players compare with one another is not the same thing as suggesting that “basketball is the equivalent of five 1-on-1 games”.

    Individual match-ups are much more insidious than that. :-)

    i.e. Each specific individual match-up effects the way in which the other specific individual match-ups play out during each possession of a NBA game.


    re: Jack vs Teague compared with Johnson vs DeRozan

    In a qualitative analysis, years of experience in the league is but one factor to be considered.

    Skill-wise, Jack and Teague are relatively equal right now.
    Physically, Jack and Teague are relatively equal right now.

    Skill-wise, Johnson is far ahead of DeRozan right now.
    Physically, Johnson is far ahead of DeRozan right now.


    re: Chris Bosh vs Josh Smith, at the PF position

    At the Center position, Bosh is well ahead of Smith. At the PF position, however, Smith is equal to Bosh; although the individual strengths and weaknesses are in different categories from one one another, they basically cancel each other out.


    re: Turk vs Williams

    IMO, Turk has plateaued; but, Marvin is still on the rise. If the Hawks are going to be as good as I expect them to be this season … which is slotted just behind the Big 3 in the East … then, he will need to step up and assert himself in a way that exceeds what he’s done to this point. Can Marvin do this, this season? Time will tell if I’m right or wrong.


    re: Bargnani vs Horford

    It’s not even close between these two players, in terms of which one is actually the superior NBAer, both, right now and going forward.

    Horford [Mr. Steak] is a stud that is going to play 15+ years in the league, at a very high level. When you consider what he brings to the table in terms of defense, rebounding and character … it’s a strict case of “No Mas”, in comparison with Bargnani [Mr. Sizzle].


    re: 1 more year of maturation


    The Hawks’ 5-player combination of:

    Mike Bibby … 12th yr, very good role player with high end SAC teams
    Joe Johnson … 9th yr, former key member of the SSOL Suns teams
    Al Horford … 3rd yr, former NCAA D1 champion
    Josh Smith … 6th yr, Selected in the NBA Draft straight from the hs ranks
    Marvin Williams … 5th yr, former NCAA D1 champion

    all 5 of whom played for Atlanta last season,

    is in a totaly different category when compared to the Raptors’ fivesome of:

    Jose Calderon … 5th yr, high end PG with the Spanish National Team
    DeMar DeRozan … 1st yr, No. 9 [overall] Draft Pick/2009, jury is out
    Andrea Bargnani … 4th yr, former No. 1 [overall] Draft Pick, jury is out
    Chris Bosh … 7th yr, high end player with the Raptors & the Redeem Team
    Hedo Turkoglu … 10th yr, very good role player with SAC, SAS & ORL

    only 3 of whom played for the Raptors in 2008-2009.


    subjectivity vs objectivity, in terms of years of experience

    It might help you to think of it this way:

    Situation 1. A baby matures 100% between its 1st and 2nd years of life.

    Situation 2. A teenager matures only 7% more between its 13th and 14th years of life.

    In terms of actual decision-making ability, however, which 12 month period has more significance? … aside from basic biological/neurological development … and, basketball is most definitely a game of high level decision-making. ;)

  8. khandor Says:


    Welcome aboard! :-)

  9. Steve Says:

    You must be delusional if you think its not even close between Bargnani and Horford. So 11 points and 9 rebounds makes someone a stud player? Are you kidding me? When Bargnani started he averaged 19 points and 6 boards. far more productive offensively then 11 points 9 rebounds. If you want to talk about plateau it would be Hroford`s offensive game because he has none. No outside shot, no ability to drive to the bucket, only an average back to the basket game. Bargs is far superior to Horford offensively. Not only can he stick the outside shot, he can pull up, drive past his man, face up, and post up. Defensively the nod goes to Horford, but to claim he is a `stud`and far superior is the most ridiculous thing i`ve ever heard. It`s your constant bias against Bargnani that takes away any credibilty to your arguements. Newsflash, stud players average more then 11 points a game. Those are the numbers of players with average offensive abilities.

  10. khandor Says:

    Steve [aka, "James"],

    1. FYI … if you want to continue posting comments on this blog you will need to stick with a consistent moniker rather than changing back and forth between “James” and “Steve”, etc.

    2. Like so many others in the blogosphere, you seem to focus only on the evaluation of a player’s offensive repertoire … i.e. see the list of individual skills in your comment … rather than considering all three main phases of the game, which includes Defense and Rebounding, as well.

    When it comes to understanding properly how the Center position actually works in the NBA, Offense is the least important of the three.

    There’s no bias here against Bargnani, only an awareness of what’s really important in the NBA game and what isn’t.

    Those who over-emphasize offense when determining which players are studs and which ones are not are the ones with an unfortunate bias in their way of thinking about the game. :-)

  11. Steve Says:

    Actually I am Steve, James is my brother, since he posted on here already, his email was saved, which is why i didnt bother changing it. Correct me if I’m wrong though you said “Horford is a stud”. So is Brad Miller a “stud” because he averaged 12 pts and 8 rebounds?

    Also I’m not focusing on the offensive side, i conceded that Horford is a better defender, so the matcup is even, but you said that he is so much better then Bargs and that he’s a stud, which couldnt be further from the truth. Bargs is offensive game is far more polished and far more lethal. Horford is one dimensional and will never be referred to as a stud.

  12. Steve Says:

    Also i dont plan on posting here ever again anyways because you consistently try to use bogus “data” that you create to try and manipulate your point. I agree with the guy who said the Turkoglu and Jack matchup are also bogus.

  13. khandor Says:


    When I said that Horford is a stud,

    Q1. Did I point to any statistical categories in an effort to illustrate my point?
    A1. I did not.

    The person pointing to certain stats is you.

    My characterization of Al Horford as “a stud” is independent of “the numbers” he has put up to this point in his pro career … in a similar way as my characterization of Danilo Gallinari as “a stud” has been without “statistical evidence”, thus far.

    Although Al Horford does not have the same degree of offensive talent that Andrea Bargnani has, to this point in their respective careers, IMO, he is a far better defensive player and rebounder … which, at the Center position, in the NBA, means that he is also a far superior basketball player, on the whole.

    PS. I would not classify Brad Miller as “a stud”, regardless of his PPG and RPG numbers. :-)

    PPS. In general, those who need to rely on game stat averages to evaluate basketball players accurately do not have a sound eye for the game. [e.g. Those with a sound eye for the game can tell you who is good or not just by watching the action on the floor and, then, having their impressions "confirmed" by a more thorough and appropriate form of statistical analysis which is performed after the fact. :-) ]

    PPS. It is perfectly within your rights to never comment here again.

  14. brothersteve Says:

    Hi from the sane side of the street.

    As you know, I agree with the 7 & 13 start as likely.

    Of course, I am expecting the re-tooled Raptors to go 40 & 22 the rest of the way just like in 2006-07.

    Expecting the Raptors to battle Atlanta for 4th (and lose, but split the series). Atlanta may win 50 this year.

    Jose finally shakes the Bibby curse off the Raptors this season (hopefully)

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