Hitting road on roll

MIKE KOREEN -- Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 7:43 AM ET

At least the Raptors have some reasons for optimism heading into a scary four-game trip.

The Raptors begin their final stretch of road games against Western Conference opponents tomorrow night in San Antonio against the loaded Spurs. While San Antonio will be a heavy favourite, keep in mind the Raptors rallied from an 82-63 deficit after the third quarter to beat the Spurs 96-91 at the Air Canada Centre Nov. 21.

"They're a good basketball team, but we have beaten them this year," Raptors coach Sam Mitchell said. "We didn't play that well, we only played well the last 10 minutes of the game. If we go down and play well for 48 minutes, we give ourselves an excellent chance to win. No one is unbeatable."

The Spurs are virtually unbeatable at home, however, where they have a NBA-best record of 24-2. But the Raptors enter the game on a three-game winning streak, including two rare road wins. The Raptors are 6-21 away from the ACC this season.

"It gives us a little more confidence," Raptors forward Chris Bosh said. "We knew we had to have some confidence coming in. We're facing some tough teams and it's going to be a good test for our team."

The Raptors also face the Memphis Grizzlies, the New Orleans Hornets and the Dallas Mavericks on the trip.

"I don't want to say it's everything, but it's close to (everything)," Raptors guard/forward Jalen Rose said. "We can't go out on this trip and bomb. We've got to go out and at least play good basketball, or at least .500."

Said Bosh, "We're at a point where every game is a big game."

QUOTE/UNQUOTE

"It's never a cakewalk for our team, but we wouldn't be the Raptors if it was a cakewalk." -- Rose, pretty much summing up the history of the Raptors.

BRIEFLY

The Raptors concluded February with a record of 6-5, their second winning month in a row ... The Raptors probably won't face Canadian centre Jamaal Magloire (recovering from a broken finger) of the Hornets in their game on Sunday. Magloire is expected to return to practice next week.


Videos

Photos