Sam not worrying type

STEVE BUFFERY -- Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 8:02 AM ET

Sam Mitchell took offence to a suggestion yesterday that he is in the position to become a lame-duck coach next season because he'll be in the final year of his contract.

The lame duck theory suggests that players stop listening to a coach if he is not in a position of power within the organization, i.e. in the final year of a contract.

Mitchell's contract expires after next season.

But unlike Kevin O'Neill two years ago, Mitchell has not asked Raptors management for an extension. At least not publicly.

"I'm not buying into the b... ...t theory of yours, because it's not tried, true or tested," Mitchell said.

"How does that affect anything? Either the players trust you or they don't.

"I don't like the term lame duck," Mitchell said. "What's a lame duck? It's a duck floating on top of a pond, dead?"

General manager Bryan Colangelo gave Mitchell a vote of confidence a few weeks ago, but that did not, of course, come with a promise of a contract extension, or even a guarantee that Mitchell will last out the 2006-07 season.

"Whatever happens is going to happen," Mitchell said. "We're either going to win or lose (next season). And if we lose, what comes with losing, comes with losing.

"My whole life was spent on proving myself, my whole life was spent on one year contracts," he added.

"Now all of a sudden I'm going to worry about it at 42 years old?

AROUND THE RIM

The Raptors' Chris Bosh and Mike James will work as guest reporters during the playoffs on NBA TV. Bosh will report from Dallas, James will be in Miami ... Former Raptor Jalen Rose will work as a sideline reporter for TNT during the post-season ... James is fourth in the league in three-point percentage (44%), while Matt Bonner is tied for 12th (42%) ... On the record front, Raptors forward Charlie Villanueva is second in scoring (12.8), rebounds (6.4) and blocks (0.79) and is third in minutes per game (29.0). Rookie point guard Jose Calderon is second in assists (4.5) and free throw percentage (83%).


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