Posted March 27, 2012 on AP on Fox
The Denver Nuggets were battling for the top spot in the Western Conference when they last faced the Toronto Raptors. The Nuggets are now fighting just to stay in the playoff race. Denver goes for a 10th consecutive victory over the Raptors on Wednesday night and fifth consecutive season series sweep. After a 96-81 victory over Toronto (16-34) on Jan. 27, the Nuggets had the second-best record in the West at 14-5. They've since struggled to a 27-23 overall record but did improve to 1-2 on their current seven-game road trip with a 108-91 victory over league-best Chicago on Monday. "It's a great win for us," Karl told the league's official website after his team improved to 13-1 against the East. "It can make this road trip a special trip for us." It could be if the Nuggets decide to defend. Among the league's worst by allowing 102.3 points per game - 116.3 in its previous four games - Denver built a 13-point edge by limiting the Bulls to a 16 third-quarter points. "I think individually we all take pride in guarding our man, but we just had to become a better defensive team, helping each other and communicating," said Ty Lawson, who matched a season high with 27 points. The Raptors have plenty of room for improvement on the defensive end after giving up a season high in points in Monday's 117-101 loss to Orlando. The Magic hit 15 3-pointers - tied for the most against Toronto in 2011-12. "I'm disappointed in our focus and attention to detail,'' said coach Dwane Casey, whose team has lost five of six. "We came out flat as a pancake against one of the top teams in the league.'' If the Raptors are going to bounce back, they may have to do so without DeMar DeRozan and Jerryd Bayless. DeRozan has missed the last two games with a left ankle injury, while Bayless - who scored 18 points in the Jan. 27 loss - left in the second quarter on Monday with a sore left hip. He missed the previous two contests with a left hip pointer. Toronto could use another big effort from former Nugget Gary Forbes, who scored a career-high 21 points Monday and has averaged 17.3 points his last three games - well above his season mark of 5.6 points. The Raptors also signed Ben Uzoh to a 10-day contract on Tuesday to add some depth to the backcourt. Raptors center Andrea Bargnani will get his first look at the Nuggets this season after missing the loss in Denver with a left calf strain. The Italian center will try to help Toronto end a four-game home skid in this series after scoring 24 points in Denver's last visit, a 123-116 loss on Dec. 10, 2010. Former Nugget Linas Kleiza led Toronto with 26 and 12 boards in that game - his first versus Denver. He could be matched up against Nuggets forward Al Harrington on Wednesday. The two got into a shoving match in the final minute in Denver with the Nuggets well on their way to a 14th win in 15 games in this series. The Raptors' last victory over the Nuggets was 121-94 at Air Canada Centre on March 23, 2007.

Raptors' Jerryd Bayless to miss rest of season

Toronto Raptors guard Jerryd Bayless is expected to miss the rest of the season after partially tearing a left oblique muscle. The Raptors made the announcement Tuesday. Bayless left Toronto's game against Orlando on Monday night with 5:25 left in the second quarter and did not return. He underwent tests Tuesday at Toronto's Mount Sinai Hospital. Bayless, in his second...

Bayless to miss season with oblique injury

Toronto Raptors guard Jerryd Bayless is expected to miss the rest of the season after partially tearing a left oblique muscle. The Raptors made the announcement Tuesday. Bayless left Toronto's game against Orlando on Monday night with 5:25 left in the second quarter and did not return. He underwent tests Tuesday at Toronto's Mount Sinai Hospital. Bayless, in his second...

Raptors sign guard Ben Uzoh to 10-day contract

The Toronto Raptors have signed guard Ben Uzoh (you-ZOH') to a 10-day contract. He joined the team Tuesday a day after guard Jerryd Bayless aggravated a hip injury during a loss to Orlando. The left hip pointer had kept him out of the previous two games. Uzoh had been in the NBA D-League. The 6-foot-3 player from the University of Tulsa averaged 14.8 points, 5.8 rebounds and...

Raptor fans cheer for a slice of pizza

How bad have things gotten for Toronto Raptor fans? Well, when your team has only won eight games at home all season and theyre battling it out for last place in their division with an overall record of 16-34, fans have apparently gotten desperate for something to cheer about. Late in the fourth quarter of Monday nights predictable 117-101 loss to the Magic, Toronto Forward Ed...

Charles Barkley thinks that the University of Kentucky could beat the Bobcats/Raptors

Although Charles Barkley is currently doing work for Turner Sports on the NCAA Tournament, that didn't stop him from making an interesting statement about the University of Kentucky.During the postgame show for Kentucky's win over Baylor, Sir Charles said this about their chances of winning the title:“Nobody can beat this team. The Toronto Raptors can’t, the Bobcats maybe...

Nuggets roll past Rose-less Bulls

Ty Lawson tied a season high with 27 points, Arron Afflalo added 22 and the Denver Nuggets shot 50 percent Monday night to beat the Chicago Bulls 108-91. Denver, playing its third game in four nights as part of a seven-game road swing, got its first win three games into the trip. Al Harrington added 17 points and Andre Miller chipped in with 12 points and 10 assists for the Nuggets...

Weems 'can't even get treatment' on ankle, season could be over in Lithuania

While the rest of the NBA players who signed overseas during the lockout go about their regular season, former Toronto Raptors swing guard Sonny Weems has been putting up solid numbers in Lithuania for BC Zalgiris Kaunas. That is until Sunday when Weems went down hard with a severe left ankle sprain in the 88-71 win over Rudupis. Early reports indicated Weems will be sidelined...

Charles Barkley: Kentucky could beat Raptors, maybe the Bobcats

Charles Barkley isn’t exactly a college basketball expert, but he’s trying to play one on TV. Sir Charles has been providing studio analysis after games on the CBS/TNT/TruTV network throughout March Madness. After Kentucky beat Baylor 82-70 to win the South Region and advance to the Final Four Sunday, Barkley called them the best team in the country. “Nobody can beat this...

From The Baseline: Raptors vs. Nuggets

For today’s “From The Baseline,” my two players to watch are JaVale McGee and Ben Uzoh. sr_adspace_id = 1000001551307; sr_adspace_width = 728; sr_adspace_height = 90; sr_ad_new_window = true; sr_adspace_type = "graphic";

Nuggets@Bulls post game wrap up

Denver Nuggets 108 Chicago Bulls 91. This was the worst loss of the season for the injury riddled Bulls. Playing their 7th game in a row without Derrick Rose, the Nuggets point guards took advantage. Ty Lawson scored 27 points and grabbed 9 rebounds and André Miller came off the bench to score 12 points [...]

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Stan Van Gundy makes fun of Toronto Raptors fans for cheering free pizza

There's not much to get excited about in Toronto these days, or Canada in general for that matter.
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