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Decent is probably not good enough : Raptors must improve

By John Schuhmann, NBA.com The Toronto Raptors certainly let one get away in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference finals on Wednesday. But there's no going back and the Raptors can only hope to play better in Game 2 on Friday (Saturday, PHL time). The Raptors have been here before. They lost Game 1 of their first-round series with the Orlando Magic and trailed the Philadelphia 76ers, 2-1, in the conference semis. [Watch the Playoffs on NBA League Pass for 30% less with this limited time offer! Select Annual package and use code SAVE30 at checkout to redeem] In both cases, the Raptors responded with improved defense. In Game 2 vs. Orlando, the 87 points per 100 possessions allowed has stood up as the fourth-best defensive game (for any team) in these playoffs. And after allowing Philly to score 116 points on just 96 possessions of Game 3, they held the Sixers to just 96 per 100 over the next two games, both victories. But after his team scored less than a point per possession for just the second time in this postseason, Raptors coach Nick Nurse is more concerned with his team's offense. "The offense is a real key to this series," Nurse said on Thursday (Friday, PHL time). "If they're going to be playing with it off the rim, they're going to be coming at you pretty hard, and obviously we went through a streak there [in the fourth quarter of Game 1] where we didn't make some shots. And we had a couple critical turnovers, as well. I think we put our defense in a bind because of the offense." All was good in the first quarter, when the Raptors scored 34 points on 27 possessions. But things went downhill from there. They scored fewer points (and less efficiently) with each ensuing quarter. In the second half, the only Raptors bucket not scored by Kyle Lowry or Kawhi Leonard was Pascal Siakam's buzzer-beating triple at the end of the third quarter. Some of the struggles were just missed open shots. Siakam was 0-for-7 on corner three's on Wednesday (Thursday, PHL time). Marc Gasol was 0-for-4 from beyond the arc in the second half. Both Danny Green and Norman Powell missed uncontested reverse layups. But Nurse believes his team has to be sharper offensively, not just with their shooting, but with the player and ball movement that leads to the shots they get. The Raptors were able to create advantages by drawing extra defenders to the ball. The Bucks' defense was No. 1 in the regular season in both preventing restricted-area shots (their opponents took a league-low 27 percent of their shots from the restricted area) and defending them (their opponents shot a league-low 58.0 percent in the restricted area). In Game 1, the Raptors attempted just 17 shots in the restricted area, their lowest total in the playoffs. In the regular season, they had only four games in which they got fewer than 17 restricted-area attempts. One of those was Jan. 5 (Jan. 6, PHL time) in Milwaukee. To protect the rim, the Bucks will not hesitate to meet a drive with three or four defenders. and with the collapsing defense, there should be Raptors open. The goal of every offense is to draw multiple defenders to the ball and then get the defense in rotation. The ball should be able to move faster than the rotating defense and eventually find an open shooter with a path back to the basket. But the Raptors just weren't good enough in the second half on Wednesday. Leonard probably forced too much, having his shot blocked five times. Look at the crowd he tried to score through here in the third quarter... Nurse said that, for Siakam, making the right play in a crowd is "the next step for him to take." Still, after watching the film from Game 1, Nurse said the offensive issues weren't just the players with the ball getting rid of it quickly enough, but also the players without the ball "relocating" to give the ball-handlers the right passing angles. "I think we did a decent job of moving the basketball," Nurse said. "Decent is probably not good enough this time of year. We've got to do a special job of it. We've got to do a good job of each time down, when you've drawn one or two or three defenders, you've done your job, right? Your job is to create them in rotations, and then your job becomes to get it to the next guy, and that guy's job is to take the shot or swing it. "So what we call our relocation needs to be a little bit better so when two or three guys converge on the ball, we can find those little alleyways a little more cleanly." Here's Leonard in another crowd with Gasol not anywhere useful and Lowry stationary at an angle where Eric Bledsoe is in the path of a potential pass... "You're talking about 3-to-4 feet sometimes," Nurse said. "The angle that they can't see you is the fine line." Everything is easier said than done against what has been the league's No. 1 defense, both in the regular season and in the playoffs. But this is the conference finals, and the Raptors simply have to be better. John Schuhmann is a senior stats analyst for NBA.com. You can e-mail him here, find his archive here and follow him on Twitter. The views on this page do not necessarily reflect the views of the NBA, its clubs or Turner Broadcasting......»»

Source: Abscbn AbscbnCategory: SportsMay 17th, 2019Related News

Bucks seeking 2-0 lead over Raptors in East finals

By Tim Reynolds, Associated Press When the season started, everyone knew the Eastern Conference would have a new king. LeBron James left Cleveland, having taken his talents to Los Angeles. And even Milwaukee star Giannis Antetokounmpo wasn’t sure who would take his place. “I didn’t know we were going to be in the Eastern Conference finals or not,” Antetokounmpo said. “I just know that he’s a top player that we always had problems against him and the Cavs. Now he’s not playing for the Cavs, so it’s going to be a little bit easier. I didn’t see it as an opening. But when you look back and see how everything went, it’s definitely an opening not having LeBron in the East.” [Watch the Playoffs on NBA League Pass for 30% less with this limited time offer! Select Annual package and use code SAVE30 at checkout to redeem] The Bucks are three wins away from taking full advantage of that opening, and becoming the team that replaces James after his eight consecutive seasons going to the NBA Finals as a representative of the Eastern Conference. Game 2 of the East final is Friday night (Saturday, PHL time) in Milwaukee, where the Bucks will aim to take a 2-0 series lead over the Toronto Raptors. “We’re happy,” Antetokounmpo said. “But the job is not done. We’ve got to protect our home. We’ve got to be able to get Game 2.” Toronto got swept out of the 2017 and 2018 playoffs by James and the Cavs. Now they’re already facing a 1-0 deficit against Antetokounmpo and the Bucks, after dropping Game 1 despite leading for 37 of the game’s 48 minutes. “Sometimes, we just missed some shots,” Raptors guard Kyle Lowry shrugged. The way the Raptors see it, the adjustment to make finals might not be an adjustment at all. They liked most everything but the outcome of Game 1 — a 108-100 Bucks win — and figure that if they play the same Friday (Saturday, PHL time), they’ll have another chance at stealing away home-court advantage. “This team has handled downs pretty well and ups pretty well, and that’s been one of our focuses since day one of training camp,” Raptors coach Nick Nurse said. “So let’s hope we can keep that going a little bit.” The Bucks won a game where they shot just under 40 percent and were 11-of-44 from three-point range. They made up for that on the defensive end and on the backboards — they held every Raptor not named Lowry or Kawhi Leonard to 1-for-23 shooting after halftime, and outrebounded Toronto 60-46. Still, Toronto insists it is not worried about the offense. “Everything starts on the defensive end,” Raptors forward Serge Ibaka said. Here’s some other things to know going into Game 2: RARE LOSS The last time Toronto had two 30-point scorers in the same game and lost — before it happened Wednesday (Thursday, PHL time) — was Feb. 2, 2012. Game 1 was only the third time this season that the Bucks allowed two opponents to score 30 in the same game; Brandon Ingram and LeBron James did it for the Los Angeles Lakers in a Milwaukee win on March 1 (Mar. 2, PHL time), and Leonard and Pascal Siakam did it in a Toronto victory on Jan. 5 (Jan. 6, PHL time). RARE WIN Before Wednesday (Thursday, PHL time), Milwaukee had been 0-7 this season when not shooting better than 40 percent. The Bucks shot 39.8 percent in Game 1. The Raptors had been 9-1 this season when holding teams to such a low shooting percentage; the only other previous blip came in Game 2 of the second round against Philadelphia, when the 76ers shot 39.5 percent and won in Toronto. BROGDON’S IMPACT Much gets made of Milwaukee’s bench mob, and rightly so, but having Malcolm Brogdon back after he was out for basically all of the first two playoff rounds with a heel injury is a huge plus for the Bucks. Brogdon played 27 minutes in Game 1; he scored 15 points and the Bucks outscored the Raptors 57-39 in those minutes. When Brogdon wasn’t on the floor, Toronto held a 61-51 edge. DANGER TIME Friday (Thursday, PHL time) isn’t technically a must-win for the Raptors, but a loss might conjure up some unfriendly memories for the franchise. Toronto has dropped the first two games of a playoff series seven times; the Raptors are 0-7 in those series, and four of them ended in sweeps — one of them a 3-0 decision, the others by 4-0 counts. ALMOST PERFECT Milwaukee is off to a 9-1 start in these playoffs. It’s the 24th time in NBA history that a team has opened a postseason with at least nine wins in 10 games; of the previous 23 to start at least 9-1, 15 went on to win the NBA championship. Only six teams have started 10-0......»»

Source: Abscbn AbscbnCategory: SportsMay 16th, 2019Related News

Uy sizzles in the heat as Ikeda flounders

What she had failed to accomplish in team duel, Daniella Uy hoped to achieve in individual play as she took command of the ICTSI Tagaytay Midlands Challenge with a scorching four-under 68......»»

Source: Philstar PhilstarCategory: SportsMay 16th, 2019Related News

Ikeda bucks heat, shaky finish to lead

Chihiro Ikeda had long searched for the form that once made her one of the most feared players on the Ladies Philippine Golf Tour and finally regained the touch in scorching conditions yesterday, taking charge with a 70 at the start of the ICTSI Tagaytay Midlands at the Midlands course here......»»

Source: Philstar PhilstarCategory: SportsMay 16th, 2019Related News

Ikeda wavers in heat, but grabs 1-shot lead

Ikeda wavers in heat, but grabs 1-shot lead.....»»

Source: Thestandard ThestandardCategory: SportsMay 15th, 2019Related News

Ben Simmons ready to play for Australia s Boomers - Inquirer Sports

SYDNEY Ben Simmons is set to play for Australia after confirming in an online video Im going to be a Boomer for the upcoming events. Simmons NBA season ended when his Philadelphia 76ers were knocked.....»»

Source: Philippinetimes PhilippinetimesCategory: NewsMay 15th, 2019Related News

Ikeda bucks heat, shaky finish to lead

Chihiro Ikeda had long searched for the form that once made her one of the most feared players on the Ladies Philippine Golf Tour and finally regained the touch in scorching conditions Wednesday......»»

Source: Philstar PhilstarCategory: NewsMay 15th, 2019Related News

3 Tips to Keep Your Pet Safe and Healthy During a Heat Wave

(NC) As the days get longer and the weather gets warmer, it’s important for our furry friends to remain cool, comfortable and safe. Keep these tips in mind to protect your pet during the hottest months. 1. Dog and cat coats don’t go in the closet. Don’t forget our pets have to wear their coats […].....»»

Source: Metrocebu MetrocebuCategory: NewsMay 14th, 2019Related News

Voter dies of heat stroke, cop suffers heart attack

A man died of heat stroke after voting in La Union yesterday while a police officer deployed for election duties suffered a heart attack in Batangas City on Sunday......»»

Source: Philstar PhilstarCategory: NewsMay 14th, 2019Related News

Trump Orders Tariff Hike on Remaining Chinese Imports

TEHRAN (Tasnim) - US President Donald Trump cranked up the heat in a trade battle with China on Friday, ordering a tariff hike on almost all remaining imports from the world's second-biggest econom.....»»

Source: Philippinetimes PhilippinetimesCategory: NewsMay 14th, 2019Related News

May 13: One hot, humid election day

CEBU CITY, Philippines— The heat is on for the 2019 midterm elections and so is the temperature here in Cebu. The Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration in Mactan (Pagasa-Mactan) has recorded the maximum temperature for today, May 13, at 35.3 degrees Celsius with a heat body index of 41 degrees Celsius. No wonder […] The post May 13: One hot, humid election day appeared first on Cebu Daily News......»»

Source: Inquirer InquirerCategory: NewsMay 13th, 2019Related News

Election day in Cebu in photos

CEBU CITY, Philippines — The polling precincts in Cebu promptly opened at 6 a.m. with several candidates opting to be the first to cast their votes. Then as the day progressed, more voters trooped to the voting centers and lines and lines of people have to patiently endure the heat as they wait for their […] The post Election day in Cebu in photos appeared first on Cebu Daily News......»»

Source: Inquirer InquirerCategory: NewsMay 13th, 2019Related News

More images of the day Cebuanos choose their leaders

CEBU CITY, Philippines — On May 13, Cebuano voters cast their votes to choose their leaders that will lead them in the next three years. A sizeable number of voters trooped to the voting precincts in the province of Cebu, Mandaue, Lapu-Lapu and Cebu cities and endured the heat and the long queue brought about […] The post More images of the day Cebuanos choose their leaders appeared first on Cebu Daily News......»»

Source: Inquirer InquirerCategory: NewsMay 13th, 2019Related News

Higit 30 lugar sa bansa, lampas 40 degrees Celsius ang heat index

Manila, Philippines – Naging mabenta ang pamaypay at tubig sa mga presinto ngayong eleksiyon dahil sa matinding init na naranasan sa ilang bahagi ng bansa ngayong araw, Lunes, May 13. Pumalo na kasi sa higit […].....»»

Source: Remate RemateCategory: NewsMay 13th, 2019Related News

Voters decry long lines at school where President Duterte voted

DAVAO CITY (MindaNews/13 May) – Voters at the Daniel R. Aguinaldo National High School, where President Rodrigo R. Duterte had voted in previous elections, complained about having to wait for long and suffer the heat inside the polling precincts. Mae Rose Dionela, 36, went to the school at 7 a.m. with her neighbor, Jasmin Dichos, […].....»»

Source: Mindanews MindanewsCategory: NewsMay 13th, 2019Related News

Elderly farmer walks 5 km to voting center, fails to vote as name not in voter’s list

CEBU CITY, Philippines — As early as 6 a.m., Ceridulia Benemerito started walking from Sitio Pantag to Sitio Lamak in Barangay Mayana, Barili, southern Cebu to cast her vote on May 13, Monday.  The 89-year-old farmer braved the early morning heat and walked the five-kilometer road for her to reach the voting center in Lamak […] The post Elderly farmer walks 5 km to voting center, fails to vote as name not in voter’s list appeared first on Cebu Daily News......»»

Source: Inquirer InquirerCategory: NewsMay 13th, 2019Related News

Leonard hits bouncer at buzzer, Raptors beat 76ers in Game 7

Leonard hits bouncer at buzzer, Raptors beat 76ers in Game 7.....»»

Source: Abscbn AbscbnCategory: SportsMay 13th, 2019Related News

RIVERMAN’S VISTA: The other elections on Monday

As it is, the national elections are a highly emotional affair. We are seeing that now with so much at stake. But while outside the gaze of  national media, the heat is more palpable and intense in the local elections  where political rivalries are more direct and personal......»»

Source: Mindanews MindanewsCategory: NewsMay 11th, 2019Related News

Butler does it, leads 76ers past Raptors to force Game 7

Butler does it, leads 76ers past Raptors to force Game 7.....»»

Source: Abscbn AbscbnCategory: SportsMay 10th, 2019Related News

Raptors crush Sixers, Nuggets rout Blazers to gain NBA series edge

LOS ANGELES: The Toronto Raptors dismantled the Philadelphia 76ers and the Denver Nuggets dominated Portland Tuesday (Wednesday in Manila) to take commanding leads in their NBA playoff series. The Raptors…READ The post Raptors crush Sixers, Nuggets rout Blazers to gain NBA series edge appeared first on The Manila Times Online......»»

Source: Manilatimes_net Manilatimes_netCategory: NewsMay 8th, 2019Related News