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Wow. Eric Decker Jersey. In a season filled with disappointments and heartbreaks, Friday nights game against the Milwaukee Bucks might stand at the top the (ever expanding) mountain. In a match that couldve seen the nine-games-below-.500 Raptors pull within a single game of the playoffs, a position only made possible by the dismal teams surrounding them in the standings, they choked. In fact, to say that the team choked probably gives the wrong impression of exactly what transpired, since it evokes images of a team that put itself in a position to win the game but then coughed it up. Instead, the boisterous crowd at the Air Canada Centre was treated to one the litany of disinterested and disaffected outputs by the home club, a squad that appeared utterly indifferent to the fact that they were relinquishing perhaps their most important game of the season, thus far. More to the point, once theyve completed a four-game stretch against Orlando, Cleveland, LA and New Orleans this team, that now sits as the second-worst team in the Conference, may be fresh out of important games and will be forced to play out the string of easy matchups with the shame of knowing that they blew countless chances to have those games mean something. This has certainly been a pattern for this team, though. After a dismal stretch of losing three in a row at home in mid-December (that coming only two wins removed from a five-loss road trip that saw Sam Mitchell axed mid-way), the team had a chance to kick off a six-game Western road trip on a high note against the Oklahoma City Thunder, at the time the worst team in the West, paving the way for a potential 4-2 trip. Of course, they lost that pivotal game against Oklahoma City, as well as a winnable conclusion to the trip against Golden State to return from the trip 2-4, instead. Or how about the two games against Boston that followed a recent three-game win streak? The first game looked to be a total blow-out until the subs managed to bring it back within sniffing distance before they let it go in the end, while the second game was utterly winnable if this team had the kind of mental discipline to close out games and secure much-needed wins. Either win would have given the team some measure of momentum to get the season back on track after Andrea Bargnani began rounding into form, but instead they dropped both games, and then proceed to drop their two subsequent matches against Chicago and Indiana - not to mention the three games that followed to secure an embarrassing seven-game losing streak. In each of those matches was Torontos lone All-Star Chris Bosh. Well, in is becoming a relative term when it applies to Bosh, these days. While his talent is immense and indisputable, his inability to lead this team through its struggles has become truly remarkable. Last night, like in so many games before, Bosh was completely invisible as an impact player. Superstars are meant to be the kind of players who lift their teams up when theyve fallen, the kind of guys who grab the ball and score (or die trying) to get the team over the hump. Bosh has not only shown little ability to do that since the first month of the season, hes shown a lack of interest in the task for some time now. While he may be content in telling the world that now expects to be fêted with All-Star berths, his play seems to speak to a lack of understanding of what it means to actually be a star. This team cannot rely on him to pull them out of a shooting slump or to close out a game down the stretch because he simply cant, or wont, do it. Instead he bobbles the ball on a catch or dribbles it off of his foot or gets blocked by Joakim Noah. In fact, only once this month has Bosh taken 20+ shots in a game (cherry-picking against Sacramento last Sunday), compared to the four times he did it in November (where he also had 19 attempts twice). This is all the more remarkable when one considers that for a long stretch this month Bosh was without Jermaine ONeal and Jose Calderon to eat away at his attempts. He ranks 22nd in the league in FG-attempts-per-game at 16.1, behind Antawn Jamison, Al Jefferson and even bench player Jason Terry. He also ranks only two shots more per game than Andrea Bargnani this month, a measure pretty on par with his extra three minutes of game time this month. If this team is to have any hope of salvaging this increasingly unsalvageable season its going to have to start with Bosh taking an active interest in his fate. He is going to have to start outworking his opponents as well as his own team if for no other reason than to lead by example; because why would his teammates be compelled to leave it all out on the floor if Bosh wont? Perhaps, though, this teams actual efforts, which appear totally at random and too infrequently, arent enough to matter in a season thats become defined by disinterest. That GM Bryan Colangelo insinuates that his roster is merely under-appreciated, rather than truly inept, has gone from mystifying to downright insulting. To hear the fans shake the walls of the ACC last night as the Raptors made their inevitable push (and subsequent inevitable letdown) forces one to realize how thoroughly these fans have been left flapping in the wind by this team. Players call them out for booing poor performances, executives rip them for criticizing the roster and the team as a whole shows no willingness to put forth the kind of effort deserved by Torontos rabid fan base, yet still they follow. If this were a season lost to games where they simply didnt have enough in the cupboards to beat superior opponents but still went down swinging each night, one could live with that circumstance - its what keeps OKC packing the house each night. However, this is a team that refuses swing, even in the most crucial games against the most vulnerable of opponents, and the kind of bad blood that engenders is very hard to cast out of ones system. The Raptors fan base has supported this club through some very trying times, and there could come a time when games arent the only thing this club stands to lose. These fans have shown a willingness to get behind just about anything, but theyre only going to follow the emperor for so long before taking a good long look at who theyve thrown their weight behind. Darren McFadden Jersey. Fichardt went into the final round with a five-stroke lead and shot his worst round of the tournament to finish at 5-under 279. He also won the Sao Paulo Brazil Open in 2001 and the Qatar Masters in 2003. Bart Scott Jersey. John Lucas III scored a career-high 25 points, Joakim Noah had 13 points and 13 rebounds, and the Bulls clinched the top overall seed in the NBA playoffs with a 107-75 victory over the Cleveland Cavaliers on Thursday night. -- The Denver Broncos have traded defensive back Cassius Vaughn to the Indianapolis Colts for fullback Chris Gronkowski. Rob Gronkowski Jersey. Campbell made 32 saves for his first professional victory -- and he came close to recording his first shutout -- in the Texas Stars 4-2 win over the host Toronto Marlies in American Hockey League action Sunday. Demaryius Thomas Jersey. The year the Jets returned to the NHL will always have a special place in the memory bank. The Jets closed out 2011 with a 3-2 home win over the Toronto Maple Leafs on Saturday.St. Eustache, Que. - In front of a capacity crowd at Autodrome St. Eustache, Scott Steckly won the Kodak 250. It was the first NASCAR Canadian Tire Series presented by Sirius Satellite Radio event at the track and Steckly took advantage of the excitement to win for the second week in a row and for the third time in four races this year. With Don Thomson Jr. leading on lap 188 his Chevy suffered an electrical malfunction and stopped on the track and handed Steckly the lead. He took the ball and ran the rest of the way eventually beating D.J. Kennington to the line by 2.531 seconds. Dating back to last season, the Milverton, Ontario driver has won four of the last five Canadian Tire Series events. He cites nothing new in the program just a run of luck that he would like to continue as long as possible. "Were not doing anything different than weve ever done," said the victor. "Just running the same program and not trying to get fancy with anything. Other guys are just as fast. I have to say that weve been very fortunate and Ill take it." Runner-up Kennington finished second to Steckly a week ago at Barrie Speedway. "Im really starting not to like him,"t; joked Kennington. James Harrison Jersey "Hes got a great car right now and there was little I could do about it." Kerry Micks finished third and feels it sets the tone for the heart of the schedule coming up this month and next. "We came here wanting to finish on the podium and we did," said Micks. "This is where we want to start making a move and carry some momentum for the next several races." Andrew Ranger and J.R. Fitzpatrick finished fourth and fifth, respectively. Ron Beauchamp Jr., Peter Gibbons, Patrick Laperle, in his series debut, Brad Graham and Doug Brown rounded out the top 10. There were seven lead changes in the race involving six drivers and the pace was slowed 11 times for 51 laps for caution. Unofficially, in the championship point standings, Steckly has a 113-point advantage on Kennington. The Canadian Tire Series begins its two-race swing through western Canada in two weeks with the A&W 300 on July 19 at SunValley Speedway in Vernon, B.C. which will be followed a week later by the Canadian Tire Series 100 on the temporary road course at City Centre Airport in Edmonton, Alb., as part of the Rexall Edmonton Indy weekend. ' ' '


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