Carroll, Joseph seen at Casino before Raptors’ Loss

The Toronto Raptors suffered one of the worst playoff losses in history last night when they were drubbed 116-78 by the Cleveland Cavaliers. So it doesn’t look very good that key Raptors players DeMarre Carroll and Cory Joseph were spotted at Cleveland’s Jack Casino prior to Game 5.

Toronto Sun columnist Steve Simmons saw the pair gambling at 2am in the morning and wrote a critical news piece in the aftermath. Here’s one excerpt from his column:

“On the morning of the latest, biggest game in Raptors history — just before 2 in the morning to be precise — two prominent Toronto players were spotted walking through a downtown Cleveland casino with a large group, clearly not in game-preparation mode.

“This may have had nothing to do with how or why the Raptors were decimated and embarrassed 116-78 again by the Cleveland Cavaliers in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference final. But it makes you wonder. Why?

“Why would DeMarre Carroll and Cory Joseph put their own reputations in question, possibly put their team in question, by being seen wandering around in the middle of the night?”

This report is only made worse by the fact that the Raptors watched the Western Conference Finals game between the Golden State Warriors and Oklahoma City Thunder on Tuesday night, then were supposed to go to bed.

Despite this, Raptors coach Dwayne Casey didn’t seem to worried about the matter.

“I didn’t know that,” said Casey. “This has nothing to do with curfew. This isn’t why we lost. This is the NBA, they’re grown men. These are grown men. These things happen. It was an 8:30 game. That’s the good thing I guess.”

Casey added, “Against Cleveland, we’ve got to come out with a different sense of urgency. We knew they were going to come out like a freight train and they did. They were locked in from the start to the finish. The force they play with is different here.”

Despite Casey excusing the pair and adding that no fines will be issued, Carroll and Joseph’s performances will still draw criticism.

The pair combined for 3-of-12 shooting and four turnovers. Like Casey said, these two aren’t the sole reason why Toronto lost the game. However, you can bet that neither will be visiting Jack Casino again if they can win tomorrow night and force a Game 7 in Cleveland.