Warriors hand reeling Raptors fourth straight loss
In a brief three-minute conversation with reporters following a 124-112 loss to the Golden State Warriors on Saturday night, Bosh criticized his teammates and himself and said he’s out of explanations for Toronto’s slide that has the Raptors on the fringe of missing the postseason.
“It’s like if you look at the schedule right now and see Toronto, I’m sure people are checking something in the win box,” said Bosh, who had 24 points and 11 rebounds in the loss. “I can understand if we lose the game going down fighting but we’re not fighting at all.
“Time is ticking and it’s counting down, and if we keep playing the way we are right now, we’re going to be on the outside looking in. Guys need to step it up, period.”
The Raptors have lost four straight and eight of nine while seeing their lead over Chicago trimmed to 1 1/2 games for the eighth and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.
Three weeks ago, the Raptors closed an 11-2 stretch that put them in contention for homecourt advantage in the first round of the playoffs. Now they’re struggling just to get into the postseason.
Asked what Toronto needs to do to turn things around, Bosh—the franchise leader in points, rebounds and blocked shots—was succinct in his reply.
“Just do it. Act like you care,” he said. “I’m going down playing offense on (the Warriors) side of the court and their bench is louder than we are. That doesn’t make any sense. They’re not playing for anything.
“We’re trying to make the playoffs, maybe get a fifth seed, but that’s like slipping every day. This isn’t playoff basketball.”
Toronto, Charlotte, Miami and Chicago are vying for the final three playoff spots in the East. The Raptors currently sit in eighth behind the Bobcats and Heat, and ahead of the Bulls.
Losing to a Golden State team that owned the third-worst record in the NBA certainly didn’t help.
“Before the game we said just go out there and have fun and try and get a win,” said Ellis, who had his first 30-point game since scoring 46 against Dallas on Feb. 3. “We made plays for other guys and got everyone involved. We got ourselves together and became a scrappy team.”
In short, the Warriors did everything the Raptors didn’t do.
The Warriors got a big lift from Ellis, who was playing for only the second time after sitting out six games with a back injury. Golden State’s team captain scored 17 points on 7-of-15 shooting in Thursday’s 110-105 loss to Portland, but went 12 of 22 against Toronto.
Curry also came up big while falling one point shy of his career high. The Warriors’ rookie matched Ellis for the team lead with five 3-pointers, including a 32-footer with 1.5 seconds left to play.
Toronto scored 35 points in the first quarter but stumbled through most of the second, going more than 6 minutes without a basket while allowing Golden State to erase a 10-point deficit and take a 45-42 lead.
Calderon helped the Raptors snap out of their offensive funk briefly with three 3s over the final 4 minutes of the half and Jack added his own 3 with 43.8 seconds left to help give Toronto a 60-56 halftime lead.
But the Warriors took control for good in the third quarter, going on a 25-6 run keyed by an onslaught from the perimeter.
“We can get it turned around by having our guys play better,” Raptors coach Jay Triano said. “Obviously our best guys have to play better. We’re not getting that right now.”
Golden State, which was 7 of 12 on 3-pointers in the first half, went 7 for 10 from beyond the arc in the third and built a 15-point lead Toronto never challenged.
Warriors coach Don Nelson moved within six wins of passing Lenny Wilkens to become the winningest coach in NBA history.
NOTES: Bosh needs 31 points to become the first player in Raptors history to reach 10,000 in a career. … Toronto is winless in four games since Bosh returned to the lineup after a seven-game absence due to a sprained left ankle. … Golden State’s franchise record for 3-pointers in a single game is 18, reached three times. Most recently the Warriors did it against Memphis on Jan. 3, 2007, though they had 46 attempts. … The Warriors have beaten the Raptors six straight times at home.