Raptors get bullied

Raptors forward Chris Bosh does his best to guard against the Chicago Bulls during last night's...

Raptors forward Chris Bosh does his best to guard against the Chicago Bulls during last night's game at the Air Canada Centre. The Raptors couldn't overcome a poor second quarter in their loss against Chicago. (Toronto Sun/Craig Robertson)

BILL HARRIS -- Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 8:08 AM ET

We know this goes against what Oprah preaches every day, but Jalen Rose shouldn't listen too closely to his feelings.

The veteran Raptor had said on Tuesday he had a feeling his team was going to beat the Chicago Bulls last night. But that feeling was not backed up by fact, as the Bulls rocked the Raptors 94-85 before a crowd of 16,974 at the Air Canada Centre.

Rose's words had fallen far short of a solid guarantee, but he flashed a little fire last night when it was suggested his comments might have motivated the Bulls.

"I don't give a damn," Rose said. "That's fake. If they need me to motivate them, they're going to get bounced in the first round (of the playoffs)."

The Bulls and Raptors have met six times since the big three-for-three trade on Dec. 1, 2003 that brought Rose and Donyell Marshall to Toronto and sent Antonio Davis to Chicago. The Raptors are 0-6.

"It's ironic that's the team we have the longest losing streak against," Rose said. "It was good execution by them and a horrible display by our team."

Last night wasn't Rose's fault personally, though. He was a monster again for the Raptors, scoring a game-high 30 points.

Rafer Alston had 15 points and Matt Bonner chipped in with 14 for Toronto, but Chris Bosh -- who turns 21 today but whose bruised lower back still clearly is bothering him -- scored only nine points.

Marshall left the game in the fourth quarter because of a stiff lower back. He had scored only three points in 15 minutes and after the game he was obviously stiff and sore as he hobbled around the locker room.

As a team, the Raptors shot 31.8% from the field. Rose was 8-for-22 and Alston was 6-for-21, but Raptors coach Sam Mitchell strongly defended that pair.

"Sometimes they had to shoot the ball," Mitchell said. "We had other guys who were tentative and not looking at the basket. If other guys aren't going to take shots when they're open, what are (Rose and Alston) supposed to do, hold it for (shot-clock) violations?"

Five Bulls scored in double figures, led by Eddy Curry with 16 points. Davis had 12 points and five rebounds.

"That's Jalen, it's no big deal," Davis said when asked about Rose's comments from Tuesday. "I don't think anyone took offence to it. We mentioned it in our (pre-game) meeting and everyone kind of chuckled."

Raptors centre Loren Woods started for the second game in a row, amassing three points and five rebounds in 17 minutes. Mitchell said Woods and Rafael Araujo would "flip-flop" as the starter for the rest of the season, the hope being it doesn't turn into a "flop-flop."

Araujo had two points and one rebound in four minutes last night as the Raptors missed 18 of their first 20 shots.

Bulls starting point guard Kirk Hinrich was scratched just before the game (strained left hamstring).


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