Calderon, Lowry available to face Bulls

January 16, 2013, 10:26 AM

The Toronto Raptors lost on Tuesday night in Brooklyn to the Nets but more important problems sprung forth from the game rather than simply a defeat.

The injury bug bit deep into the Raptors as their top two point guards, Jose Calderon and Kyle Lowry, were hampered by injuries but will play against the Bulls.

The Bulls are no strangers to injured point guards as they have been without Derrick Rose for much of the past two seasons.

Programming note: Watch the Raptors battle the Bulls live on Sportsnet ONE beginning at 7 p.m. ET / 4 p.m. PT.

Here are a few thoughts to consider ahead of tonight’s game:

Getting a point

Both Calderon and Lowry were re-evaluated on Wednesday to see if they could play and they will suit up.

Raptors forward Alan Anderson missed the second half of the Brooklyn game as well after chipping a tooth but is also a go.

No Bullstuff from Casey

When Casey said, “nobody’s feeling sorry for us”, he could have directly been referring to the Bulls who have been without Rose seemingly forever.

There is light at the end of the tunnel in that situation as he is back practicing with Chicago although he has yet to take part in full contact.

The team’s medical staff is being understandably cautious with Rose as he may have returned earlier than ready a year ago leading to the point guard suffering a second injury.

Even without Rose, who many feel is the top point guard in the game, the Bulls sit fifth in the Eastern Conference (21-15) so this is a team that can afford to be patient.

Beating the bog boys

While the Raptors have played much better of late, they are still having trouble with teams that are playing .500 basketball.

So far only three of their wins have come against such clubs and if they are truly going to climb back into the playoff hunt they will need to record a few victories over teams such as the Bulls.

All three of those wins have come at home which is unsurprising for a team that has had little success on the road but it also means that they could pull off the upset tonight.

DeRozan’s time to shine

In his usual nice manner, Smith brought up an interesting point in his blog about the play of DeMar DeRozan.

While DeRozan is fairly steady with his production it would be nice to see the Raptors shooting guard get the hot hand at some point.

Yes, he did score 37 against New Orleans but that was in a triple-overtime game and it is time for him to step up when the Raptors are having trouble scoring.

It would certainly take some pressure off the team’s other players and likely create some extra spacing for others if he were to go off for 35 points in a game.


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