Encouraging words

FRANK ZICARELLI -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 11:21 AM ET

Many perceived Chris Bosh's post-game remarks following Sunday's loss to Denver as a challenge to his teammates.

Having had a chance to reflect on his words, the Raptors' franchise player said he was merely trying to encourage his beleaguered teammates, who seem unwilling to step up in crunch time.

"I don't take any personal responsibility for bringing things to light,'' Bosh said yesterday. "Anybody can do it.

"What I said was no way negative. Nothing was said to hurt any feelings or put the team down.

"It was more encouragement."

Bosh wants players to shoot with the same confidence they show in the first quarter when the fourth quarter rolls around.

When a quality, open shot presents itself, Bosh sees no reason why a player can't knock it down in the game's final two minutes. The onus is also on Bosh to somehow persevere through the double teams and not look to defer in times when he should be selfish for the betterment of the team.

SHEED'S NOT SHY

Bosh should see a lot of Rasheed Wallace when the Detroit pays a visit to the ACC tonight. He'll also get an earful from the Pistons power forward.

"Rasheed likes to mix it up,'' Bosh said. "He likes to get involved by talking, but you can't take it personally."

Raptors head coach Sam Mitchell has high praise for Wallace, whom he battled during Mitchell's playing days.

"Rasheed is big, quick and strong," Mitchell said. "He knows how to play guys. He's no dummy."

REST FOR THE WEARY

Mitchell said his last-minute decision to cancel practice on Monday was to give his team a mental break. Yesterday, the Raptors were put through a hard practice that lasted roughly 90 minutes.


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