Raptors hit benchmark of futility with loss number 50

Raptors hit benchmark of futility with loss number 50

Dino killer, qu'est-ce que c'est? The Pepsi Center in Denver (Image: David Herrera) 

The Toronto Raptors travelled to Denver to take on the Nuggets last night and, in keeping with tradition, the Raps were absolutely thumped, losing by a whopping 33 points 123-90. The lopsided defeat marked the squad’s 50th of the season, a feat it hasn’t accomplished since 2005–6. Star basketball guru Doug Smith today called it “a dubious record of which they should be ashamed.” The result also further cemented the Mile High City’s strange status as the place the Raptors least like to play.

The Raps snapped a 14-game losing streak on the road on Sunday night with a surprising 95-93 victory over the far superior Oklahoma Thunder, only to return to usual form on Monday. There just seems to be something about Denver that spells doom for the Raps. Before last night, the club had dropped its last four decisions in Denver by margins of 27, 18, 39 and 32 points—that’s an average of 29 points per loss. Sure, the Raptors are not a top basketball team, but they’re a particularly bad basketball team when they visit the Pepsi Center.

Unfortunately, the Raptors’ losing ways aren’t doing them much good in the race to the bottom of the NBA standings. Washington, Cleveland, Sacramento and Minnesota have been simply too good at being bad. The Raptors’ 20 wins puts them three victories ahead of the pack and seven up on the woebegone Cavaliers, who are all but assured of receiving the first overall selection in this summer’s entry draft.

• Raptors blown out by Nuggets for 50th loss of season [Toronto Star]
• Raps dominated in Denver [Toronto Sun]
• Raptors routed in Denver [Globe and Mail]