I’m not sure what was more aggravating — the Raptors blowing a 12-point lead because they couldn’t hit open shots in the second half or the brutally one-sided officiating late in the fourth quarter that screwed over the Raptors repeatedly. This was an ugly game that got progressively uglier as it went along. I think that the officials must have decided that while neither team truly deserved to win this game, the Hornets needed it more so they made sure they got the necessary calls.
OK, now that I have that out of my system (I’ll await my fine from Mr. Stern), the Raptors would have won this game easily if Andrea Bargnani and Jose Calderon didn’t each have their worst games of the season. I don’t know if they were hungover or what but neither of them could hit a shot to save their lives today — Barganani went 4-for-17 in 42 minutes and Calderon went 0-for-5 in 39 minutes while the rest of the team shot 55.6 percent. To make matters worse, Bargnani only grabbed four rebounds while Calderon had seven turnovers.
For the Hornets, Emeka Okafor had his usual deterrent effect in the paint but it was Jarrett Jack who led New Orleans’ comeback while scoring 17 points off the bench — with all but two of those points coming in the second half. From the way he’s played during most of his Hornets tenure, I wondered if he had managed to have his best game as a Hornet against his former team. But when I looked up his game log I saw that he dropped 23 in a win over the Rockets last Friday. It appears he’s rediscovering the form that made him such a solid performer with the Raptors last season.
As frustrating as it was to watch the Raptors fumble away a very winnable game (with a little help from the men in grey), you kind of have to be used to this now if you’ve been following this season, right? This was the first game this season I actually got to watch at work and my co-workers were surprised at how well I took this particular loss. I told them, “Hey, this is what crappy teams do.”
Raptors Player of the Game: Amir Johnson — 31 Min, 17 Pts, 8-12 FG, 0-1 3Pt, 1-1 FT, 8 Reb, 1 Ast, 3 Stl, 2 Blk, 2 TO
Hornets Player of the Game: Emeka Okafor — 38 Min, 17 Pts, 8-12 FG, 1-3 FT, 16 Reb, 1 Blk, 3 TO
Goat of the Game: Andrea Bargnani — 42 Min, 11 Pts, 4-17 FG, 1-7 3PT, 2-3 FT, 4 Reb, 1 Ast, 1 Stl, 1 Blk, 2 TO