This one's for Jose

STEVE BUFFERY -- Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 8:47 AM ET

Raptors forward Jorge Garbajosa said it seems "strange" to be on the road without his teammate and countryman Jose Calderon riding shotgun.

The two members of Spain's 2006 world championship team are almost inseparable and Garbajosa does seem out of sorts with Calderon back in Toronto nursing a back injury suffered on Sunday night against Golden State.

"We will try to win as many games as we can on this (west coast) road trip and dedicate them to him," Garbajosa said yesterday, prior to the Raptors game against the Phoenix Suns at the US Airways Center.

Raptors GM Bryan Colangelo said Calderon is feeling better and did some shooting and running at the practice gym inside the Air Canada Centre and could join the team later on the west coast swing.

Favourite Sun returns

Colangelo's first official trip back to Phoenix and the US Airways Center was met with goodwill wherever he went. It was the Raptors GM who built the Suns into the contenders they are now.

"I've seen a lot of people, a lot of smiling faces," Colangelo said. "You go through different emotions, but I closed this chapter quite a while ago and actually had been back to the building a few times to see some playoff games last year."

MR. PERSONALITY

Raptors head coach Sam Mitchell was asked yesterday if the key to controlling Suns' all-world point guard Steve Nash is to try to keep the Canadian from passing and turn him into a scorer. Nash is leading all NBA players with 11.4 assists per game.

He also is averaging a team-best 19.8 points per game, a career high.

"I think Steve has proven that he's not shy when it comes to scoring. If he needs to score for them to win, he'll score. If he needs to pass, he'll pass," Mitchell said.

"We just have to play good solid defence, and we're going to try to do some things and hope they'll work."

When asked if he might have something special up his sleeve, Mitchell replied: "None of your business, that's what we can do, none of your business. You'll see when the game starts. Why would we tell you what we're going to do? You wouldn't understand if we told you anyway."


Videos

Photos