Sam Holako of Raptors Republic returns to answer a couple of quick questions about the Toronto Raptors before tonight’s game at the Izod Center.
NAS: Because exhibitions like the Slam Dunk Competition are what’s really important (at least when you follow a team with 5 wins), how would you rate DeMar DeRozan’s performance over All-Star weekend and do you have any ideas on how to improve on the dunk competition, which was universally panned this year?
I really thought DeMar had a great dunk off. The kid is a natural athlete, and has been putting down big dunks all year. It was good to see him get out there and get some attention on a national level. I’d do two things to improve the dunk competition: 1) Ban Nate Robinson from competing ever again 2) Transform it into a team competition where you have a dunkers and shot blockers, with regular NBA rules (fouls, travelling, etc), and see who wins. The dunk off has been lame since Vince Carter took things to the next level years ago, and will never be as good again.
NAS: How realistic of a goal is it for the Raptors and their fans to shoot for the #4 seed and overtake Boston in the East by season’s end? And how would the Raptors fare in a first round match-up against Boston? We know what happened the last time the Raptors won a division and faced an aging, but battle tested former Division winner in the first round of the playoffs (please allow me to relive some semblance of Nets glory here).
For the Raptors to sneak into 4th in the East, they will have to win 6 more games than the Celtics do, since the Celtics have already won all the tiebreakers. Considering the Raptors have 28 games left, and the Celtics have 31…it’s just impossible unless the stars align, and since we have Turkoglu running amok on the wing, I wont hold my breath. If you ask me, it doesn’t even matter if we take 4th since we have no chance of beating the Celtics in a 7 game series. Boston OWNS the Raptors; we’ve beat them only once over the last two seasons, I don’t see the playoffs being any different. I hate you for drudging up the past like that; sign of a guy who’s supporting the worst team of all time in professional sports.