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One game into the Toronto Raptors’ playoff series against Miami, LeBron James and some news outlets are already looking ahead to a Cavaliers-Heat Eastern Conference final. Raptors coach Dwane Casey was less than pleased, but not surprised. “I saw that. Like I’ve said, nobody respects us, everybody has written us off, and that’s fine,” Casey said. “The people in this building right now, and in that locker room over there, are the most important people to believe that. Hopefully our guys take that heart, and take offence to it. They’re the ones who can do something about it.”
Lowry said his issues are not mechanical or related to the elbow injury he admitted was bothering him in March. He has has been in a slump for a month and a half, but Tuesday was different. The misses affected him, in terms of his confidence and his decision-making. He owned up to this when he met the media in between two postgame shooting sessions, and he did the same the next day. “I know what the pressure is myself, that I put on myself,” Lowry said. “And I know we won’t advance if I don’t play better.”
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Give him credit. After the game, he addressed reporters and said that the onus was on him to play better if the Raptors were to advance. “I’m going to hang out here and just be in the gym, try to get back to just enjoying it, being in the gym and having fun,” he said via the Toronto Star. “I shoot the ball well when I’m by myself, but I’m by myself. … It’s weird. I have (been through slumps) like this, but not at this time, and that’s what sucks. Playoffs, all eyes are on you. So it sucks that I’m playing this bad when all eyes are on me, because I know I’m way better than this. So I’ve got to pick this s— up.”