Dan Devine

  • Before DeRozan faced off with LeBron, he faced off with security

    Dan Devine at Ball Don't Lie 1 hr ago

    DeMar DeRozan is a two-time All-Star who finished ninth in the NBA in scoring this season. He ranks in the top 10 in the Toronto Raptors' franchise record book in just about every major statistical category and, some early-postseason-struggle-induced queasiness aside, is likely to command multiple maximum-salary contract offers when he hits free agency this summer.

    He is, along with All-Star backcourt buddy Kyle Lowry, one of the faces of the Raptors organization ... and yet, his face is apparently not always recognized within the friendly confines of his own home gym.

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    From Chris Haynes of Cleveland.com:

    This isn't the first time this postseason that a Raptors star has run afoul of Air Canada Centre security:

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  • Fan gets tossed for razzing refs, misses Raptors' biggest win ever

    Dan Devine at Ball Don't Lie 2 hrs ago

    Through the first three games of the 2016 Eastern Conference finals, Toronto Raptors fans had been pretty unhappy with the officiating in the series. And while the tide of the series has certainly turned over the past 96 minutes of basketball, that wasn't enough to placate all Raps fans when it comes to the razzing of the refs, as evidenced by the game-stopping removal of one gentleman whom the officials didn't appear to find too gentlemanly during the fourth quarter of Monday's Game 4:

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    Dang, man. As punishments go, being forced to leave the gym and miss the closing 6:40 of the biggest win in Raptors franchise history is a pretty harsh one. Hope the pleasantries you lobbed at Monty McCutchen and company were worth it, my dude!

    Even so, the Raptors didn't get the benefit of every first-half whistle. Game 3 hero and shot-blocking revelation Biyombo got the short end of the stick on what looked like an absolute stunner of a two-handed rejection of a LeBron James alley-oop late in the second quarter:

    (We kid, we kid.)

  • The Raptors show they belong, and the Cavs now face real adversity

    Dan Devine at Ball Don't Lie 14 hrs ago

    Four nights ago, I wrote this:

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    Well, four nights later, Valanciunas is back in uniform, but not yet back on the court; he was active for Monday's Game 4, but the Raptors didn't need him. Not with Lowry and DeMar DeRozan playing like All-Stars, and with Bismack Biyombo wreaking havoc on the interior. The Raptors are in the Eastern Conference finals ... and maybe, for the first time in a while, the Cavs are in trouble.

    On the other sideline, the Cavs faced many of the same issues in Game 4 as they did in Game 3. After selling out to run the hot-shooting Cavaliers off the 3-point line early in the series resulted in a steady stream of drives to the rim, the Raptors have focused more on packing the paint and forcing Cleveland to prove the blistering shooting of Rounds 1 and 2 could continue. It hasn't.

    A funny thing happened on the way to the pumpkin patch, though: the Raptors kept making shots, too.

    ... and something they'd never done before:

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  • Jonas Valanciunas will return to the Raptors for Game 4 vs. Cavs

    Dan Devine at Ball Don't Lie 20 hrs ago

    After looking like dead men walking after two blowout losses in Ohio, the Toronto Raptors stormed back to life on Saturday, scoring a 99-84 Game 3 win, riding a relentless interior performance from Bismack Biyombo and strong scoring from the backcourt troika of DeMar DeRozan, Kyle Lowry and Cory Joseph to get on the board in the Eastern Conference finals. What looked like a possible sweep 48 hours ago could fast become a tied series, and the Raptors on Monday will welcome back someone who could prove a big help in getting things knotted up:

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    Jonas Valanciunas is active and available tonight vs. Cleveland. Will not start. #rtz

    Luckily for the Raptors, though, Valanciunas' ankle responded well enough to rest and treatment that they won't have to move on without him any longer.

  • LeBron James is picking up the tab on Dahntay Jones' low-blow fine

    Dan Devine at Ball Don't Lie 1 day ago

    Way back in the long, long ago of Saturday night, it was Dahntay Jones' below-the-belt shot on Bismack Biyombo, not Draymond Green's on Steven Adams, that was drawing denigration and eliciting arched eyebrows:

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    League would have been better off giving Dahntay Jones a fine instead of a suspension. Suspension = 110 of 2015-16 salary.

    To Bobby's point - Jones only made $8,819.00 for season, signing at the very last moment of reg. season ... https://t.co/V3BZfFz1eg

    110th of Jones's salary? $80.17 - yes, eighty dollars and seventeen cents https://t.co/V3BZfFz1eg

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    Dan Devine is an editor for Ball Don't Lie on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at devine@yahoo-inc.com or follow him on Twitter!

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  • The Cavs got stopped at customs on the way to Canada before Game 3

    Dan Devine at Ball Don't Lie 3 days ago

    After the Cleveland Cavaliers flat-out pummeled the Toronto Raptors again on Thursday to take a 2-0 lead in the 2016 Eastern Conference finals, Scott Cacciola of the New York Times offered a tongue-in-cheek assessment of the Raptors' defensive efforts thus far against LeBron James: "Toronto’s best chance at this point might be having Customs stop him at the border."

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    So, you know that old saying about there being a grain of truth inside every joke?

    "Waiting for customs to let them in like..." wrote Cavaliers center Tristan Thompson in this Friday afternoon Instagram post.

    The Cavaliers, it seems, really were held up at customs as they attempted to travel to Toronto ahead of Saturday's Game 3 at Air Canada Centre.

    So, the Cavs are being held by customs right now 😂😂😂😂 pic.twitter.com/W7qWRKAmcS

  • Larry Bird thinks this era of the NBA might be the best one ever

    Dan Devine at Ball Don't Lie 3 days ago

    One of the major throughlines of this NBA season has been the tension between stars of yesteryear and those of the present day, with many retired players offering at-times unflattering assessments of the game and gumption of today's top talents. You've heard this stuff — the game's gone soft since the defensive rules changed; today's greats aren't as multifaceted as the old heads were; the 2015-16 Golden State Warriors can't hold the 1995-96 Chicago Bulls' collective jocks; Stephen Curry's doing what he's doing because nobody defends him; the overall talent pool is watered down; everything was better when everyone whistled elbows at everyone else's temples.

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  • In court, Pelicans owner claims family members 'tried to kill' him

    Dan Devine at Ball Don't Lie 4 days ago

    In a deposition made public this week as part of an ongoing and bitter legal dispute, Tom Benson, the owner of the New Orleans Pelicans and NFL's New Orleans Saints, claimed that members of his family "tried to kill" him.

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    From A.J. Perez of USA TODAY:

    More from Daniel Kaplan at Sports Business Daily:

    In court, on court and in the front office, there's an awful lot of uncertainty surrounding the Pelicans right now. They've still got Anthony Davis, which means they've still got a chance to get the basketball product moving in the right direction again; the situation in the ownership suite, though, seems much darker and dicier.

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  • Mamba still out: Kobe's not interested in joining 'Inside the NBA'

    Dan Devine at Ball Don't Lie 4 days ago

    Weeks before Kobe Bryant composed the verse that announced his plans to retire from the NBA after his 20th season, TNT commentator Kenny Smith wondered aloud how much fun it would be to see the Los Angeles Lakers legend join him, Ernie Johnson, Charles Barkley and teammate-turned-nemesis-turned-pal Shaquille O'Neal on the "Inside the NBA" panel. After Kobe's unforgettable final game last month, TMZ reported that Turner Sports had begun courting the future Hall of Famer to take a seat on television's premier studio show.

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  • The Cavaliers are just killing time by killing the Raptors

    Dan Devine at Ball Don't Lie 4 days ago

    Some of the details were different, the timestamps shifted and the statistics altered. For the most part, though, the story of Game 2 of the Eastern Conference finals was the same as the story of Game 1: the Cleveland Cavaliers mostly did whatever they wanted, whenever they wanted, and the Toronto Raptors didn't have much to say about it.

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    The Cavs crushed Toronto on Thursday, dominating the second half to roll to a 108-89 win that gives them a 2-0 lead in their best-of-seven series. The Cavaliers remain undefeated in the 2016 playoffs, a perfect 10-0 through 2 1/2 rounds of play, joining the 1989 and 2001 Los Angeles Lakers and the 2012 San Antonio Spurs as just the fourth team ever to win its first 10 postseason games. (Only the '01 Lakers won the NBA title, though, so maybe keep that stat under your hat if you come across any Ohioans this evening.)

    Until they get there, we won't know how good they really are. Until they get there, we're all just killing time.