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Terrence Ross has had better nights


Raptors' young guard gets to see friends, families and the Jefferson Democrats, though

by: TRIBUNE PHOTO: JAIME VALDEZ - Terrence Ross, Toronto Raptors guard from Jefferson High, runs around a screen as the Trail Blazers' Damian Lillard gives chase Saturday  night at Moda Center.It was not the happiest of homecomings for Toronto Raptors forward Terrence Ross.

The former Jefferson High star had a poor night from the floor Saturday at Moda Center, going 3 of 12 (0 of 4 from beyond the arc) and scoring eight points.

To put Ross in an even less talkative mood after the game, the Raptors overcame a 19-point deficit, only to suffer a 106-103 loss to the Trail Blazers.

“Terrence tried to pick it up, but he had a terrible shooting night,” Raptors coach Dwane Casey said. “He missed a lot of shots he normally makes. He gave in to the back-to-back (fatigue) a little bit. He’s a young player, so I’ll give him that. He’s been playing good basketball up until tonight.

Indeed, Ross has played good basketball of late, notably scoring 51 points against the Los Angeles Clippers on Jan. 25.

  • See Kerry Eggers' story on Ross' 51-point game:


  • Ross was nowhere near that level on Saturday, although he disagreed with Casey’s opinion that he was affected by the Raptors' 100-90 win against the Denver Nuggets on Friday, a game in which he scored 18 points.

    “It’s not something we’re not used to,” Ross said.

    But on Saturday, Ross only made baskets in one quarter, the second, when he went 3 of 6. After hitting both his free throws in the period, Ross went to halftime with eight points.

    He said he was able to score by "understanding what the defense was giving you and just going with the flow of the game.”

    The night did not begin well for Ross, who has been a regular starter at small forward since the Raptors traded Rudy Gay to Sacramento on Dec. 9. He got into foul trouble, picking up two personals in 6:26.

    "Little tick-tack fouls,” he said. “I don’t know.”

    by: TRIBUNE PHOTO: JAIME VALDEZ - Terrence Ross shoots over Portland center Robin Lopez in the first half.Ross got into Portland too late from Denver to see family or friends last night. He gave out some 30 tickets Saturday night — with everyone on the current Jefferson Democrats team among the recipients. He planned to catch up with people after the game.

    Then it will be back to the grind. The Raptors have five more games before NBA All-Star Weekend. The All-Star festivities will be a busy time for Ross, who will defend his slam dunk title.

    Last year, Ross joined the likes of former Raptor Vince Carter when he won the contest, outscoring defending champion Jeremy Evans of the Utah Jazz in the finals.

    Ross was crowned after his final dunk of the competition, when he leaped over a ball boy who was standing just outside the defensive circle. Ross slipped the ball between his legs and slammed it home with his right hand.

    Ross also had a special moment that night with fellow former Demo Terrance Jones. Jones, who plays for the Houston Rockets, tossed an alley-oop off the side of the backboard. Ross caught it, did a 360, brought the ball down low to his feet and threw it home with two hands.

    “It was fun,” Ross said, of Jones throwing him the alley-oop.

    Ross said he talks with Jones “all the time.” He does not anticipate Jones helping him in the dunk contest again, though.by: TRIBUNE PHOTO: JAIME VALDEZ - Terrence Ross tries to get in front of Blazers guard Damian Lillard.