And Sam's girl thinks she has it tough ...

MIKE KOREEN -- Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 10:46 AM ET

ATLANTA -- Sam Mitchell returned to his home just outside Atlanta on Thursday night for a family dinner, only to discover his oldest daughter's basketball team was "having issues."

Boy, does the Raptors coach wish he could have the same issues as 15-year-old Morgann.

"They're 2-2, so I was laughing at her," said the Raptors coach, whose team's record remains an NBA-worst 2-15, even after last night's win over the Hawks.

"We were riding in the car and she goes: 'Dad, this, that,' and I'm like: 'Hey you're 2-2.' She looked at me and started laughing and said: 'Yeah, you're right.' "

Morgann had her own basketball game last night and didn't come watch her dad coach, but Mitchell's wife, Anita, and their other three daughters -- Maya, 13, and twins Rhagan and Rhana, 10 -- were in attendance. So were about 50 children from Mitchell's hometown of Columbus, Ga., as part of the Dream to Achieve outreach program, which he co-founded last year with fellow Columbus High basketball star Marc Upshaw.

Mitchell purchased his home near Atlanta in the early 1990s, though his family lived with him during his playing career and simply used the Atlanta residence as a summer home.

Mitchell thought about bringing his family to live with him in Toronto when he landed the Raptors coaching gig last summer, but he didn't want to uproot his kids again.

"I actually rented a place that was big enough for the family and they came up," Mitchell said.

"But I'm not going to force them. My daughter plays basketball, she plays volleyball and she runs track and her best friend lives right around the corner.

"I remember when I was in high school, those were the best years for me ... They've travelled all their lives. So the thinking was to let them have a life."

Atlanta also is a special place for several other Raptors. Joey Graham and Morris Peterson have many relatives in the area and Jalen Rose's 5-year-old daughter, Mariah Christian, lives here and attended the game.

Chris Bosh played one year at Georgia Tech in Atlanta and had 10 tickets for the game last night.

"(Atlanta is) almost like a third home for me, next to Toronto and (his native) Dallas," Bosh said.


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