Nov 11, 2013; Houston, TX, USA; Houston Rockets point guard Jeremy Lin (7) celebrates after making a shot during the second overtime period at Toyota Center. Mandatory Credit: Andrew Richardson-USA TODAY Sports

Rockets 110 - Raps 104 (2OT)...another heroic defeat

On a night when the Toronto Raptors put up 114 shots (is that an all-time team record?), too many rattled around and bounced out. The Houston Rockets, despite mailing in their second half, were able to subdue the visitors. They needed 30 fewer shots, and double overtime, to keep feisty Toronto at bay.

Nov 11, 2013; Houston, TX, USA; Toronto Raptors shooting guard DeMar DeRozan (10) shoots the ball over Houston Rockets small forward Chandler Parsons (25) during the fourth quarter at Toyota Center. The Rockets won 110-104. Mandatory Credit: Andrew Richardson-USA TODAY Sports

The Raps suffered through a dismal first half, scoring a pitiful 33 points, and were fortunate not to have been blown out of the building. DeMar DeRozan was taking, but not making, a bunch of jumpers, yet he was an pretender compared to Mr. Volume Misser Shooter himself, Rudy Gay. Our small forward, who seems to specialize in sucking the oxygen out of the Raps offense, ended up with 37 shot attempts, though only 11 makes. While Rudy did extend the game to an additional OT period, hitting a clutch 3-ball with virtually no time on the clock, he had missed his previous 8 shots. He missed 4 of 5 in the second OT.

Jonas Valanciunas enjoyed a double-double of 10 points and 13 boards before fouling out with 3 minutes to play in regulation. Terrence Ross and Kyle Lowry were called for their sixth fouls in OT, and all of those enforced benchings damaged the Raps’ chances. The pain might have been mitigated had Tyler Hansbrough been playing, yet despite his excellent game against Utah, Psycho-T got just over 9 minutes of floor time in a 58-minute game. Dwane Casey’s romance with his small lineup continued unabated, despite the punishment the Raps were taking on the boards from (who else?) Dwight Howard. The Rox giant centre pulled down 24 rebounds, 18 of them off the defensive glass, where Psycho-T might have had an impact. Fortunately for Toronto, Howard’s well-known struggles at the free throw line were on full display, where he made 4 of 12 tries.

Toronto must be given credit for refusing to quit. They forced extra time by outscoring Houston by 5 in Q3 and 9 in Q4, in large part keyed by tight defense. Though they were able to keep the Rox Big Two of Howard and James Harden from inflicting too much damage, Jeremy Lin came off the bench to play nearly 46 minutes and score 29 points.

Putbacks: Aaron Gray played one second….the Raps had only 10 assists against 13 turnovers….DD was 6 of 25 – is he heading into another shooting slump?

The Raps are off to Memphis for a game Wednesday night against the 3-4 Grizzlies.

Brian Boake is Senior Editor for Raptors Rapture. “Like” Raptors Rapture on Facebook and follow us on twitter @RaptorsRapture for all the latest news and updates about the best damn NBA team from Canada. Remember, for the best deals on Toronto Raptors tickets for any game on the 2013-14 NBA schedule, visit our friends at


Tags: DeMar DeRozan Dwight Howard Houston Rockets Jeremy Lin Rudy Gay Toronto Raptors

  • Guy

    A number of different observations from this game. Probably one of the best games I’ve seen the Raptors play in years in terms of overall effort. In the past 3 years, a poor shooting, horribly officiated game would have resulted in a lopsided Raptor’s loss. So I’m pleased with their effort. The officiating, yeesh. You’d think I’d be used to the blatant favoritism these guys show. If Derozan got the same respect as Harden, he’s got 10 more FTs last night. Rudy probably gets another 4. That’s easily 8 pts the Raps were cheated out of. Those guys call a fair game & we’re talking about overcoming poor shooting to get a hard fought win.

    Poor screen fundamentals. Jonas has to learn to stand still when setting the screen. Three of his fouls were a result of him leaning or sticking his leg into the defender. And whether it’s Lowry, Rudy or Derozan having the screen set, they need to wait until the screener gets there & then peel of him. Far too often they would go early & take it wide. This either increased the likelihood of an offensive foul or allowed the defender to easily avoid the screen. Neither is a good thing.

    And of course, the poor shooting. The number of times I’ve heard ‘ball movement’ mentioned in interviews by Casey & the players, I have to believe it’s a focus. Yet, games continue to go by where it doesn’t happen. Derozan & Rudy seem to be above reproach. Any other player has a bad few minutes & they’re on the bench. But no matter how much it hurts the offense, DD & Gay get to keep chucking up it up whenever they want. This does not reflect well on Casey because he either endorses this inefficient play, or is unable to reign those two guys in.

    • Newmarket_Brian

      Hi Guy:
      Jonas gets called for a moving screen at least once a game. Either he’s setting them wrongly, or (as you suggest) the roller is sloppy. Regardless, he has to accept that sliding into the defender is going to get called.
      The poor shooting is now a major issue. I’m writing this after the Chicago game, which was an embarrassment. We’re not going anywhere if so many players can’t be counted on to drain jump shots.
      Thanks for commenting.