A four-game west coast swing is rough enough in itself, and finishing it with a back-to-back against a pair of teams that won a combined 102 games last season just makes it all the more difficult. After having their legs fall off in the second half last night in Denver, the Raptors are in Utah tonight to face the Jazz before heading back to the ACC for some home cooking.
The Jazz enter at 4-6, though that has a little to do with early-season road dates in Denver, Boston and Cleveland thus far. They hung tough against the Cavs Saturday, falling 107-103 despite playing without point guard Deron Williams, who’s expected to be back in the lineup tonight after taking a two-game leave to deal with his sick daughter. Throw Carlos Boozer and Mehmet Okur into the mix and it may be a rough night for the Raptors, especially if last night’s second half is any indication as to what they have left in the tank. Oh well, coming out of this stretch 5-7 is a lot better than it could’ve been. It’ll get better come December, Raptors fans.
Jay Triano was able to rest his starters most of the fourth quarter in Denver, so hopefully that’ll help them grab a second wind tonight. Still no word on whether or not Hedo Turkoglu will suit up after sitting last night with a sore hip, but his fresh legs would come in handy if he’s good to go.
The Raptors and Jazz tip tonight at nine.