Bosh wants to stay here

MIKE KOREEN -- Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 7:32 AM ET

On the eve of potential playoff elimination for the Raptors, Chris Bosh delivered a rare piece of good news to Toronto fans.

The talented forward seemed to indicate he could see himself in a Raptors uniform for the long haul.

"I think everything is falling in place right now," Bosh, a second-year pro, said yesterday, during a lengthy chat with reporters yesterday. "It's getting to the point where in the near future it could be my team. I think everybody in the NBA wants to pursue something like that and have that chance. I'm going to have that chance real soon, so that makes me happy."

The Raptors (30-44) can book tee times -- assuming they hadn't already started -- if they lose against the NBA-worst Atlanta Hawks tonight and the Philadelphia 76ers beat the Cleveland Cavaliers.

The Raptors can start negotiating with Bosh for a long-term deal after next season. When asked if it might be more attractive to join a more stable team down the road, Bosh hinted that he doesn't really like change.

"I don't want to go in somewhere blind and be, like, maybe this will happen ... and have to start all over again," Bosh said. "That's something I don't like to do."

Bosh, naturally, isn't thrilled with the state of the franchise. He expressed his feelings on all the garbage he has witnessed this season yesterday.

"I think it was an excessive amount (of off-court problems)," Bosh said. "(Compared with) last year, it was probably two or three times as much. Sometimes for the benefit of the team, you should deal with some things internally. I think when people just talk about it man to man and just deal with it with the team and with the front office, things go a little bit better. I think we just got off to the wrong start and things kept coming up. They were coming up once every week or once every two weeks and I think that was too much."

There was Vince Carter making a trade demand, Rafer Alston threatening to quit the NBA, Alston and Jalen Rose criticizing teammates ... the list goes on.

"It's just different people reacting to different things different ways," Bosh said. "I'm not one who likes to do all that stuff. It's not me, so I can't understand it."

With four games coming up in the next five days, Bosh just hopes the Raptors have taken a long look in the mirror after an embarrassing 104-74 loss Wednesday against the Memphis Grizzlies. Raptors coach Sam Mitchell kept Bosh on the court for all but one minute of that debacle.

"In any situation, whether you're in or out of the playoff run, whether it is the beginning or end of the year, just to give up like that is unacceptable," Bosh said.


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