Raptors Lose Bargnani, Lowry and Johnson
Toronto finished their five-game Western road trip in Portland with another loss that dropped their record to 4-18 on the season, but that wasn’t the worst news of the night.
The Raptors started the game with Landry Fields, Alan Anderson and Linas Kleiza unavailable due to injury and may have ended the night with as many as three more players on the shelf.
Early in the first quarter, Victor Claver fouled Kyle Lowry hard after a steal sending the Raptors’ starting point guard to the floor. Lowry looked shaken, but he continued to play into the second quarter when he suddenly left the court after a bad pass. It was later announced that he had injured his right triceps muscle. Head coach Dwane Casey confirmed the injury had occurred earlier in the game.
“I think it was in the first quarter when he hit the floor,” Casey said. “Somebody kind of grabbed his arm and he hit the floor.”
Later in the first quarter it was Andrea Bargnani’s turn to hit the deck. Bargnani ran over the defender on a drive to the basket and landed awkwardly on his elbow.
“I fell on the elbow first,” Bargnani said. “[My hand] felt numb afterwards. It is still a little numb [now].
“X-rays were negative, so that’s good. [But,] no it doesn’t feel good. It doesn’t feel right.”
Neither Lowry nor Bargnani returned to the game.
Midway through the third quarter it was Amir Johnson’s turn, but what happened to Johnson is hard to imagine. Johnson was ejected after the referee wouldn’t let him hold the ball before a free throw.
“Every free throw I always go and rub the ball and give it right back to the ref,” Johnson said. “I guess the ref didn’t let me have the ball, so we kind of got into a tug-of-war. No words were said and he ejected me out of the game. I kind of lost my cool from there. I think I threw my mouth piece. If anybody got hit, I apologize for that. It was just childish.”
There was no doubt Johnson actually did throw his mouthpiece and it flew past the departing referee who had just ejected him. It probably doesn’t matter that Johnson hasn’t been in trouble his eight NBA seasons, the Raptors could be without his services for the next game or two.
No further details about the extent of the injuries to Lowry or Bargnani were available immediately after the game. An announcement from the league offices about Johnson’s situation should not be long in coming.