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Gameblog: Cavs vs. Toronto Raptors

By George Thomas Published: January 19, 2010

Game:  Cavs vs. Toronto Raptors
Broadcast: 
TV: FSOhio WAKR (1590 AM); WTAM (1100 AM), WHBC (1480 AM)
Starters:
Cavs:  LeBron James (F); J.J. Hickson(F); Shaquille O'Neal (C); Anthony Parker (G); Mo Williams (G).
Raptors:  Chris Bosh (F); Hedo Turkoglu (F); Andrea Bargnani (C); DeMar DeRozan (G); Jarrett Jack (G). Injured: 
Cavs: Jamario Moon (abdominal strain); Leon Powe (knee).
Raptors:  Reggie Evans (midfoot sprain) - OUT.  Marco Belinelli (flu-like symptoms) - day-to-day. Officials: Mark Wunderlich, Brent Barnaky, Tony Brothers
In a nutshell:
The Raptors have won their last two game and begin a two-game road trip here in Cleveland.  The last time the two teams met, the Raptors came out clawing and embarrassed the Cavs in the Air Canada Centre.  That was back in the days of ''What's wrong with the Cavs?''  As the rest of the NBA has come to learn, there isn't a lot wrong with the Cavs right now.  They had little identity and no idea how their new pieces parts were going to fit together. Most of that has taken care of itself as the team has proven to be solid and versatile for the most part.
But how will the Cavs do tonight?  Jet lag - or lack thereof - will tell.  After hopping all over the West in two time zones for 10 days, it would be surprising if the team came out looking a little ragged.  That was easy to see in their performance against the Los Angeles Clippers.
The Raptors come into the game having scored 101 points in six consecutive games, while the Cavs have given up more than 100 in three of their last five.  That isn't a promising situation, but rarely do teams play better defense on the road than at home.
Chris Bosh has averaged 25.6 points and 9.8 rebounds per game and his past five. Does anyone realistically believe that J.J. Hickson will be able to play with him?  Expect to see LeBron James on him some and expect Mike Brown to continue to give Jawad Williams more time.  Brown likes his defense and fearlessness.
The Cavs' centers - Shaquille O'Neal and Zydrunas Ilgauskas -will have their hands full with Andrea Bargnani, who's averaged 20.8 points, 8.8 rebounds in the last five.  In the last meeting with the Cavs, he torched them for 28 points.

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