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Rasheed Bites Raptors

In two games against the Toronto Raptors this season, Rasheed Wallace has put up remarkably consistent numbers. His 15.5 points per game average marks his highest scoring average against any opponent the Celtics have faced so far this season. His shooting numbers from last night are almost identical to his from the November 27 matchup against Toronto:

November 27: 6-11 FG, 3-6 3PT, 0-0 FT, 15 points, 2 rebounds, 1 assist, 4 steals, 1 block, 1 turnover

Last night: 6-11 FG, 2-5 3PT, 2-2 FT, 16 points, 6 rebounds, 4 assists, 3 steals, 1 block, 0 turnovers

I was fortunate enough to be at the November 27 game and similar to last night's battle, Wallace's had a tremendous impact on the overall outcome of the game. What stuck out the most  was the balanced offensive attack Wallace brought to both contests. His three-point shooting numbers were efficient, but more importantly, he didn't keep his offense one-dimensional in either contest. He scored a variety of buckets down low on top of the threes, highlighted by last night's spin on the right base line around Andrea Bargnani and subsequent two-handed dunk.

Along with his scoring average against Toronto being higher than any other opponent, his 54.5 field goal percentage is also tops amongst opponents he's attempted at least 10 shots against this season. Apparently, Rasheed enjoys his matchup with either Chris Bosh or Andrea Bargnani. Arguably his most impressive moves last night were the turnaround jump shots in the second and fourth quarters that he banked in. The more I watch Rasheed play, the more I'm convinced he could turn that into his go-to move if he wanted to.

Along with all of the positives Wallace has produced against the Raptors, I have to mention his ongoing on-the-court feud with Hedo Turkoglu. The two exchanged a pretty heated war of words back on November 27, that resulted in Wallace receiving a technical with 10:25 left in the second quarter. Last night the two got tangled up in the lane trying to secure a rebound with 4:13 left in the second. The result? A technical apiece. Not exactly what Wallace needs right now, but I wouldn't be surprised if he appealed that one.

The Celtics are set to play the Raptors two more times this season: Sunday, January 10 and Wednesday, April 7, with both games taking place north of the border. If Wallace's numbers from the first two contests are any indication, we can expect a significant contribution from him in the final two meetings between these Atlantic Division foes.

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