Go big or go home

MIKE GANTER, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 10:06 AM ET

There has been talk in NBA circles that the Raptors' decision to go with the big front line of Chris Bosh, Jermaine O'Neal and Andrea Bargnani might lead to some copycat manoeuvres from other teams.

One team that could go big is the New Jersey Nets but only if they stay healthy, and that's not the case right now.

Six-foot-10 forward Josh Boone is out with a bone bruise, meaning rookie Brooke Lopez and second-year forward Yi Jianlian will likely go up against Bosh and O'Neal tonight.

That leaves 7-footer Andrea Bargnani up against 6-foot-6 forward Bobby Simmons.

When Boone is healthy again, Nets head coach Lawrence Frank will have the option of moving Jianlian to small forward with Boone and Lopez filling out the front court.

DEVIN ON A TEAR

The Raps can expect to have their hands full with Nets point guard Devin Harris.

The former Maverick recently followed some good advice from team president Rod Thorn and general manager Kiki Vandeweghe when they suggested he would be more effective if he attacked the basket more frequently.

Harris then went out and scored 38 points against the Pistons a week ago Friday. An injury sidelined him for a couple of games but Harris was on the attack again, averaging 31.5 points in back-to-back wins over Atlanta on the weekend.

BRIEFLY

With that road win in Miami on Wednesday, the Raps already are a quarter of the way to matching last year's road-win total of 16, and they're only 11 games into the season ... Jose Calderon's return was greeted with plenty of fanfare but it would be a mistake to believe he's completely over a hamstring strain that caused him to miss two games. Calderon attempted only seven shots all Wednesday night and just one in the first half.


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