7 benchmark games for the Raptors

If the Raptors [13-17/.433; 2nd, Atlantic] can go into Detroit on Wednesday night and win a game against the Pistons, it will be a big step in the right direction:

Tinted glasses won’t help Raptors’ situation

December

Opponent

Minimal

Practical

Optimal

 Fri 18

 vs Nets, 2-24/.077

 W, 1-0, 12-17

W, 1-0, 12-17

 W, 1-0, 12-17

 Sun 20

 vs Hornets, 11-13/.458

 W, 2-0, 13-17

W, 2-0, 13-17

 W, 2-0, 13-17

 Wed 23

 @ Pistons, 11-14/.440  

 L, 2-1, 13-18

L, 2-1, 13-18

 L, 2-1, 13-18

 Sun 27

 vs Pistons, 11-14/.440

 W, 3-1, 14-18

W, 3-1, 14-18

 W, 3-1, 14-18 

 Wed 30

 vs Bobcats, 10-14/.417

 L, 3-2, 14-19

L, 3-2, 14-19

 W, 4-1, 15-18

January

Opponent

Minimal

Practical

 

 Sat 02

 @ Celtics, 20-4/.833  

 L, 3-3, 14-20

L, 3-3, 14-20

 L, 4-2, 15-19

 Sun 03

 vs Spurs, 13-10/.565

 L, 3-4, 14-21

L, 3-4, 14-21

 W, 5-2, 16-19

 Wed 06

 @ Magic, 19-7/.731  

 L, 3-5, 14-22

L, 3-5, 14-22

 L, 5-3, 16-20

 Fri 08

 @ 76ers, 6-19/.240  

 L, 3-6, 14-23

W, 4-5, 15-22

 W, 6-3, 17-20

 Sun 10

 vs Celtics, 20-4/.833

 L, 3-7, 14-24

L, 4-6, 15-23

 L, 6-4, 17-21

 Mon 11

 @ Pacers, 9-14/.391  

 L, 3-8, 14-25

L, 4-7, 15-24

 W, 7-4, 18-21

 Fri 15

 @ Knicks, 8-17/.320  

 L, 3-9, 14-26

W, 5-7, 16-24

 W, 8-4, 19-21

with a re-match set to occur, in Toronto, on Sunday, December 27.

Home court wins against the Nets, Hornets and Pistons should almost be a given during this stretch of 12 games.

An away court victory, however, against the Pistons, is a barometer of a different sort.

Despite a modest W-L record and having to cope with a string of injuries to key players [i.e. Rip Hamilton/Out; Ben Gordon/Out; and, Tayshaun Prince/Out], Detroit is a solid team:

* 5th in Points Allowed per game [94.7]; and,
* 4th in Rebounding Differential per game [+3.8].

There are 7 key games during this stretch which could go either way:

Game 1, @ Detroit Pistons
Game 2, vs Detroit Pistons
Game 3, vs Charlotte Bobcats
Game 4, vs San Antonio Spurs
Game 5, @ Philadelphia 76ers
Game 6, @ Indiana Pacers
Game 7, @ New York Knicks

and play a siginficant role towards deciding the eventual fate of Chris Bosh, Jose Calderon, Andrea Bargnani, Jay Triano and Bryan Colangelo with the Toronto Raptors.

Mark them off on your daily calendar, as they play out.

If the Raptors end up going 7 for 7, then you can expect them to challenge for a playoff spot this season.

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2 Responses to “7 benchmark games for the Raptors”

  1. brothersteve Says:

    The Raps aren’t giving that win in Detroit back!

    Shouldn’t an Optimal forecast assumed the Raps could beat a team on the road after they had already beat them at home?

  2. khandor Says:

    brothersteve,

    1. The Raptors should not have to “give back” last night’s W at Detroit, in any way, shape or form.

    2. No, IMO, an optimal fore-cast should have expected the Raptors to lose to a relatively healthy Pistons squad in Detroit, after beating the Pistons in Toronto, and then win on Sunday Dec 27 back in Toronto.

    3. However, when the Pistons play without Hamilton, Prince and Gordon and get an 0-7, in just 12 MP, from Charlie Villanueva … and, are in the 2nd half of a back-2-back … and, are playing their 3rd game in the last 4 days … they have very little chance of beating the Raptors.

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