Big Ticket focused on game, not Bonner

STEVE BUFFERY -- Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 8:01 AM ET

There was some worry yesterday that Minnesota Timberwolves star Kevin Garnett or his teammate Latrell Sprewell would go after the Raptors rookie Matt Bonner.

The last time the two teams met, a 96-90 Toronto win at the Air Canada Centre on Dec. 15, Sprewell, followed by Garnett, went after Bonner after The Red Rocket pulled Garnett to the floor following a rebound. Bonner was ejected from the game.

"I hope that's the last thing on Matt's mind, I know it's the last thing on Kevin's mind," Toronto coach Sam Mitchell said. "Hey, Minnesota is in the tough Western Conference. You look at those records out west, there are going to be some teams with .500 or better records who don't make the playoffs.

Minnesota understands that you've got to be .500. You need home court advantage (in the playoffs), so I'm sure their motivation is to take one basketball game at a time and try to win and build something.

"I think Kevin's motivation is trying to get his team back into the playoff hunt," Mitchell said. "Same with us. In our conference, we're trying to get to the top of it. We feel we can do that, but we've got to try to win some games on the road. Bonner said he approached yesterday's match "just like any other game."

AROUND THE COURT

The latest from the vast rumour department: New York Knicks are said to be interested in Jalen Rose ... Toronto is scoring almost 13 more points a game more this year than last (98.2-85.4). Only the Phoenix Suns have enjoyed a better turnaround (94.2-109.1) ... Strangely, the Raptors are 6-10 against teams with a losing record ... Rose is shooting 50% from the field coming off the bench, 42% as a starter.


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