Start time: 7:00 PM ET
Probable starting lineups
Toronto: Jose Calderon, DeMar DeRozan, Rasual Butler, Ed Davis, Amir Johnson
Indiana: Darren Collison, Paul George, Danny Granger, David West, Roy Hibbert
Toronto: Andrea Bargnani, Jerryd Bayless and Linas Kleiza are all day-to-day.
Indiana: No injuries reported.
The Raptors matched up pretty well with the Pacers when they last met on December 28 — they were within three points before David West put the game away with a jumper with nine seconds left. In the rematch, Bargnani will probably sit out the game with a calf injury. Since he’s the Raptors’ leading scorer and the Pacers are currently fourth in the league in Defensive Efficiency (points allowed per 100 possessions), points will probably be difficult to come by for the hometown crew.
I’m merely guessing that Ed Davis will start if Bargnani doesn’t play. If Dwane Casey elects to send out a starting lineup that includes both Rasual Butler and Jamaal Magloire, we can pretty much assume the Raptors will be trailing by double-digits before the end of the first quarter.
A number of people mentioned the Pacers as a dark horse in the Eastern Conference this season, and it turns out there was a good reason for that. Roy Hibbert has developed into an imposing defensive post presence while Danny Granger and Paul George provide quality D on the perimeter. Ten games into the season, they’ve scored 33 more points from the free throw line than their opponents — when you consider that they’ve scored 32 more points than their opponents overall, that free throw disparity is a significant reason for their 7-3 record. Indiana outscored Toronto by 12 at the line in December, so that’s something to watch for tonight.
- Since Complex just named this the best Raptors blog, I’d like to take this opportunity to say that if you pay this blog a similar compliment and I find out about it, not only is there a good chance I’ll link your site here and on Twitter, but you might get linked by TheScore’s Twitter account with 46,000 followers. If you thought I was above this kind of pandering, you overestimated me.
- If you’re a Canadian NBA fan, there’s a good chance you tune into Court Surfing on theScore every week. I usually post a funny video at the end of these game threads, but the new Court Surfing theme song by JD Era is so good that I have to give it some exposure here: