A Costly Loss

 

Spot on from our #RTZ Tweet of the Night Winner @MegiMK.

On a night where the Raptors saw the return of Andrea Bargnani, the result was one of the worst losses of the season in an ugly 105-86 blowout against the Pistons.

Bargnani understandably showed a little rust after a 20-game layoff  and his return seemed to result in a somewhat disjointed start by his team offensively, but what has to be much more disconcerting was the Raptors’ overall compete level.

With two days to prepare for Saturday’s contest and coming off one of their bigger wins of the campaign on Wednesday, the Raptors were simply outworked in every facet of the game by a Pistons team that seems to be hitting its stride after a rough start.

“I’m shocked that we came out with that kind of effort,” said Dwane Casey post-game. “This team [Detroit] played last night. There was no defensive focus. There was no screening. There was no fundamental that we executed tonight on both sides and I’m shocked.”

Very possibly an aberration for the Raptors given what we’ve seen from them over the last month, but factor in a nasty looking right ankle sprain to Jose Calderon in the second quarter and this is a loss that could have lasting effects. X-Rays on Calderon’s ankle proved to be negative, but the Raptors may need to prepare to press on through a difficult portion of the schedule without their veteran lead guard.

Casey, for his part, won’t accept any justification for a similar effort to Saturday’s.

“We can use every excuse. We had different rotations, Andreas (Bargnani) coming back, Jose (Calderon) went down. Whatever the excuse is, it’s not allowed.”

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