Mitchell: Damned if he does, damned if he doesn't

STEVE BUFFERY

, Last Updated: 1:06 PM ET

ATLANTA -- Raptors coach Sam Mitchell has a major-league dilemma on his hands.

The more he plays star forward Chris Bosh, the better chance his team has of winning. However, the more Bosh plays, the more is body will continue to break down.

Bosh started the regular season with a sore left ankle, but has played through it with eight double-doubles in the team's first 11 games.

But now, he is also bothered by a sore right knee and was visibly limping after last night's 97-93 loss here to the Atlanta Hawks.

On a good team, Bosh, no doubt, would have his minutes cut until the knee felt better. But he is the most valuable player on a Raptors squad hoping against hope to make the playoffs and struggles without him.

"It makes it tough when he is not on the court," Mitchell said. "When he is on the floor, at least he commands a double-team and kind of opens things up for other guys."

"It's tough enough for us. But it's even tougher when Chris is not 100% and can't do the things that he can normally do," the coach added. "You take the primary scorer off of any team in the NBA, they're going to struggle."

Bosh said prior to last night's game that he will not sit unless he is at risk of further damaging his knee or heel. Until that time comes, he is going to play.

The fourth-year Raptor bristled when told that his coach is worried about his health.

"People are always going to worry," he said. "It's always something with me. I'm just going to keep playing. (Pain) is nothing new to me. I played half a season with a knee brace before, so this is just one bad game and we play (tomorrow) and I'll have the chance to redeem myself."

Bosh recorded a sub-par 11 points and seven rebounds in 42 minutes last night.


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