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Raptors 104, Knicks 94

Playing very short-handed, and for the first time in a few days, the Knicks lost a sloppy one to the Raptors in Toronto. Stephon Marbury provided the Knicks only semblance of offense, dropping 31 points. More on that later. Game notes:

  • Unlike most games following big victories, the Knicks started off hot, leading by as many as 8 in the first quarter before the Raptors regained the lead to go up by 3 after 12 minutes.
  • Have you ever noticed how often Marbury makes steals after a bonehead play? It seems like every time he throws the ball away, he immediately takes it back.
  • Mike Breen referred to Kris Humphries as "a former...Jazz." He sounded like a fool. Jazzman? Jazzster? Jazzer? Jazzy Jeff? This is why I hate team names that aren't definitively plural.
  • You'd think that Mike Breen would've gotten some free "Just for Men" samples from Clyde, but he's gray as a ghost. Noticeably more so in the last few years. My theory? Nate Robinson. Breen's clearly embarassed and frustrated by Nate's shot selection. It's like Nate is Breen's delinquent son.
  • The Raps have their secondary logo (the basketball-claw) as the center court decal. Thought that was unusual. Maybe it isn't.
  • Clyde mentioned that Marbury wears the number 3 because of his prowess from downtown. He's mentioned that before. Has anyone heard anything to prove that to be true?
  • Francis and Curry did quite a bit of jawing in the second quarter. Francis was over-dribbling and totally missing Curry on post-ups. Steve Francis is by no measure of the imagination a point guard.
  • Tiger Woods T.J. Ford hit a buzzer-beating three at the end of the first half that, in fact, did not beat the buzzer. The original ruling of a made basket was overturned.
  • Chris Bosh runs like an ostrich.
  • Bizarre scenario: Anthony Parker grabbed a rebound off a Knick FT miss, and came down on somebody's foot as he was landing. He immediately hit the floor in pain, and one ref inadvertently blew the whistle. Meanwhile, Balkman snatched the ball away from Parker's hands. Everyone kinda froze, and the Raptors trainer came rushing out onto the court to help Parker. After everything was sorted out, the Knicks maintained possession, and the trainer of all people was hit up with a technical for coming on the court without a timeout ever being called. Those trainers are a bunch of fuckin' thugs, I tell you.
  • Amazing how quickly things can change. A few minutes into the third quarter, the Knicks were up 10 and had all the momentum. The third quarter buzzer sounded with the Knicks down 11, and Jeffries and Francis writhing on the floor in pain next to one another. They were both fine, it was just a very telling image.
  • Chris Bosh seems to be going out of his way to look like Marquis Daniels.
  • I love Andrea Bargnani's game. We haven't seen him since early December, and he has come an unbelievably long way. Here are my 3 favorite things about Andrea Bargnani: 1. He shoots threes without jumping 2. His typical expression is one of utter emptiness. Andrea's a dullard. The guy looks like he can't feed himself. 3. He's fuckin' money from everywhere on the court, but appears to talk little to no trash (presumably because he can't speak English.)
  • Stephon Marbury was an island out there. Francis either over-dribbled or threw the ball away (7 TO's). Curry couldn't get his shots to fall and had 6 turnovers of his own. Frye was reluctant to shoot for one reason or another. Richardson had pain in his back and sat most of the game. Malik, Jeffries, and Balkman should be electrocuted every time they attempt a jump shot. Steph did everything in his power to keep the Knicks in it, including 5 three pointers, 9 dimes, 6 free throws, and solid defense on T.J. Ford,  but he simply can't do it on his own.
  • Barnesgasm mentioned it in the Game Thread, but Eddy Curry has officially returned to being "Mittens". If you weren't a reader of Your NYK, I started calling Eddy by that name early in the season because he couldn't catch passes, missed easy looks, and got stripped a lot. As Curry improved his hands, the nickname kinda subsided. But it's back with a vengeance. Mittens really looks lost without Crawford and Lee dishing feeding him the ball.
  • The Raptors shot 12-20 from downtown.
  • Think about the lineup of Marbury, Francis, Jeffries, Rose, and Curry. That's 1.75 people that can hit a wide open jump shot (Francis being the three quarters). There's no way in hell you can run a decent offense with that little outside threat on the floor.
Anyway, while they stayed in this one most of the way, it was a shit game for the Knicks. Marbury was pretty much the only competent force in the game (although Jeffries deserves some credit for his defense), and Curry struggled with getting the ball and finishing around the basket. This does not bode well for a home stretch without Lee and Crawford. I know I sing a different tune when the Knicks win, but games like this remind me of the impact these injuries have had. Hornets on Friday. I'll be back tomorrow. Peace.

Note: I'm totally at a loss with working pictures into my game notes. The code required to do these things is still complete nonsense to me, so please excuse the barren, colorless game notes whilest I learn. Thank you for your patience.