Early Season Implosion, what happened?
I'd be lying if I said I wasn't dumbfounded by the raptors current winstreak. From how they were playing only a couple of weeks ago, I would never have expected this kind of rebound. I have no explanation. So I turn to you guys. Why are raptors winning games now? Why did they play so bad only a short while ago?
Reasons for Losing - THEN ....... Reasons for Winning - NOW
Reasons for Losing:
1) Dysfunctional play - Lowry (new), SF (Nerve-man Fields), Rookie Centre (Important position - too much pressure on JV)
2) Pace. With Lowry as the PG, the faster pace didn't match the talent properly.
3) Hate to dismiss what some are saying, but Raps played a very tough schedule
4) Excessive amt of Road games (10 in November - of 16 game total)
5) Injuries to key Bench players
6) Bench Line-up didn't play like they're playing now.
7) Starting Schedule pace - After 1st game, Raps played 7 games in 11 nights (4 on the road - 3 Western teams)
8) Casey had some weird line-up combos
9) Bargnani (Raps 1st scoring option), got off to a rough start.
10) Domenic McGuire STARTED 9 games in November
11) 3 Rookies [Jonas, Ross, Acy], 7 New players [Rookies + Lowry, Fields, Lucas, McGuire] plus Pietrus (late November).
Reasons for Winning (Key points in Bold):
1) Jose is starting
2) Schedule has been easier
3) Lowry is passing better - coming off the Bench (then he did as a Starter)
4) Bench - 2nd in the League (over Jose stretch). November (14th), December (4th), January (2nd)
5) Team defense has picked up - simply because players have done it as a TEAM, although 2011-12 Raps were still better.
6) Back Court Offense - November (19th), December (4th), January (1st)
5) During the Jose stretch, Raptors have been No. 1 in Pts out of the paint
6) Opponent 3 point shooting % - November (25th), December (8th), January (1st) - .244
7) Assists - November (21st), December (11th), January (2nd)
What are NOT reasons (for Winning):
1) F/Ta - Raptors actually trended down with January being the lowest total.
2) 3 Point Shooting (by the Raps) - Marginal increase (< 1.0 made shot)
3) Opponent Points in the Paint [Defending] - November (18th), December (30th), January (11th) - 5 games
What are NOT reasons (for Losing):
1) Any one specific player