Calderon's foot hurting

Raptors guard Jose Calderon is suffering from a sore heal. He is questionable for the game against...

Raptors guard Jose Calderon is suffering from a sore heal. He is questionable for the game against the 76ers tonight. (Toronto Sun File/Veronica Henri)

MIKE KOREEN -- Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 7:40 AM ET

The summer can't come soon enough for Jose Calderon.

The Raptors rookie point guard has been bothered by a sore right heel for much of the season and the pain has just increased in recent weeks.

Calderon missed a 93-89 win over the Indiana Pacers Sunday and is questionable at best for a road game tonight against the Philadelphia 76ers.

Normally a happy, enthusiastic type, Calderon wore a look of frustration on his face during an interview yesterday and simply stared at the court below him.

"I can't help the team. I can't play like I can," the native of Spain said. "Some moves (he can't do as well with the injury). It's hard to glide side-to-side. I hope it will get better in a few weeks or a few days so I can help the team. I know after the summer, I will be prepared for the games because with a rest I will be good. But I need to play now."

Just how badly he needs to play now is open to debate. The backup to Mike James, Calderon has been seeing head trainer Greg Spratt after most recent practices and couldn't take part in all drills yesterday. The Raptors are one loss away from guaranteeing they finish the season under .500, so it's not like they are making a playoff push.

Calderon, who missed three games with the same injury in December and January, raised plenty of eyebrows with his solid start to the season, but his numbers have tailed off badly recently. In the past five games, Calderon has shot just 22.2% from the field, while averaging just 13 minutes, 2.8 assists and two points.

"I've never (had this injury) before (this season)," Calderon said. "I don't know exactly what happened. Now, I'm feeling a bit more pain."

One theory is that Calderon's body hasn't adjusted to the longer NBA schedule. Calderon played just 39 games with his team in Spain last season. He already has played 57 this season.

While the Raptors have their four players nursing injuries, the 76ers have a bigger health concern. Star guard Allen Iverson sprained his right ankle Sunday and the NBA's second-leading scorer will not play tonight. He also is doubtful for Philly's coming three-game trip, very bad news for a team battling for a playoff spot.

"They play pretty good without Iverson," Raptors star forward Chris Bosh said. "I remember last year they won in Dallas (without Iverson). This year, they won in Memphis. They have a lot of guys who really step up to the plate and accept that challenge without him. It's still really a good team without him."


Videos

Photos