MILWAUKEE — Chris Bosh left everything out on the floor, extracting every ounce of energy he had and then some.
Unfortunately, none of his teammates could produce a stop, box out when a defensive rebound was crucial or get the ball to the right guy in the right spot.
Despite a career-high 44-point performance and yet another double-double, Bosh couldn’t prevent the Raptors from dropping a
113-107 decision to the host Bucks Wednesday night.
This was a game the Raptors should have had and would have had.
But when a team can’t execute down the stretch and ends two quarters looking completely lost, defeat is inevitable.
When a team is incapable of putting a body on an opponent and basically imposing one’s will to control a rebound, losing seems fitting.
“Simple things, like keeping somebody off the boards, cost us the game," Bosh said in hushed tones following a setback that put the Raptors one game under .500 at a time when they could easily be three games above.
“It’s always frustrating. You try as hard as you can, but we came up short. It seems like we’ve come up short a lot this year.”
The exception has been Bosh, who has stepped up more often than he has fallen flat.
Milwaukee outscored its visitors 52-30 in the paint and recorded 17 offensive rebounds, including two in the game’s final minute when the outcome was far from decided.
For some reason, the ball found its way to Antoine Wright in the left baseline.
Granted, he was open, but the situation cried for the ball to be in Bosh’s hands.
One possession summed up Hedo Turkoglu’s struggles as a Raptor.
With halftime approaching and the Raptors in no hurry to take a shot from the perimeter or attack the rim, the ball was in Turkoglu’s hands.
Inexplicably, he heaved an ill-advised jumper early in the shot clock when he should have exercised better patience and poise.
And this after the Raptors called a 20-second timeout, fully aware that they had last shot before the break.
By intermission, the Raptors were leading 56-49. At one point, Toronto’s lead was extended to as much as 11.
“In the first half, we allowed them to stay in the game with offensive rebounds, second and third opportunities,’’ Jarrett Jack said.
With absolutely no one capable of defending Bosh, the Raptors star had a field day, making virtually every shot he attempted from the field.
When he wasn’t scoring from the field, Bosh was getting to the line and converting with regularity.
“Chris played great,’’ Jack said. “It was a real dominant effort. For us to be successful, we need to get production from everyone.
“We can’t allow him to carry the entire load.”
The Raptors caught a break when Andrew Bogut fouled out with 4:41 left in the game.
Bogut was a tough matchup for Andrea Bargnani, a non-factor who picked up three quick fouls early in the fourth period.
Bogut’s 27 points led the Bucks. On two straight possessions, he scored using his left hand and then his right.
It was that kind of night for the Raptors, a night they’d soon forget because they know they let one slip away.