PORTLAND - DeMar DeRozan validated his newly minted All-Star title, spearheading the Raptors comeback on Saturday but theres one play hed like to have back. Nike Air Max 270 Womens Clearance . With just under five seconds remaining - the Raptors having clawed back from a 19-point deficit and pulled within one - DeRozan took the handoff from Chuck Hayes. As he tried to create space, turning the corner with Blazers guard Wesley Matthews draped all over him, the first-time All-Star fumbled the ball off his calf. His reaction was instant and said it all. He knew he, quite literally, dropped the ball. "I lost the ball, I put that one on me," DeRozan said, owning up to the miscue. "Ive got to keep the ball in my hands and not turn it over, at least give us a chance to get a shot off." Fact is the Raptors had that opportunity, a shot to steal a game they had no business hanging around in, because of DeRozans heroics. DeRozan, like the rest of his teammates, came out flat in the first half. Coming off a win in Denver the night before, Toronto shot 35 per cent from the field in the opening 24 minutes, misfiring on all eight attempts from three-point range. As a team they couldnt execute, missed makeable shots and left their defensive effort in the Mile High City. It was ugly. "The first half, we came out with a typical back-to-back approach," said coach Dwane Casey, who was critical of his team after they let up in the fourth quarter of Fridays double digit victory over the Nuggets. "It wasnt us." DeRozan, playing in his second game after missing two with an ankle injury, had just six points, shooting 2-of-8. Whatever was said at the break seemed to wake up the fifth-year guard. DeRozan could do no wrong in the second half, where he scored 30 of his game-high 36 points and recorded 10 of his career-best 12 assists. "I mean, hes an All-Star. Yall see it," said Kyle Lowry, who should be joining DeRozan in New Orleans later this month. "Hes an All-Star for a reason. He did an unbelievable job of making shots, getting to the line and just getting it going. We know. Weve seen it before so its no surprise to us." Lowry, like his backcourt comrade, was also much better in the second half - he had 23 points and eight assists on the night - as were subs Patrick Patterson and Chuck Hayes, who came in and helped the Raptors find themselves defensively. The resilient Raptors dug deep once again - something weve become accustomed to seeing after slow starts this season - and when it came down to one final possession, there was never a doubt who the play was being drawn up for. "[DeRozan] wanted the ball and when your best player, your All-Star wants to the ball you give him the ball," Lowry said. "They did a good job defensively and [Matthews] is strong enough to do that but Im still getting the ball to [DeRozan] every single time in that position." Within seconds of losing the ball, DeRozan walked off with both hands on his head in disappointment. He tapped his chest as if to say, "my bad" and lifted the jersey over his head. "We put ourselves in that position," Casey said, stressing the poor start. "[DeRozan] wanted the ball, we gave it to him, but I give him props for getting us to that point." "I commend DeMar for carrying us. He put us on his shoulders and took us down the stretch and put us in a position to win. Thats all you ask." The loss - Torontos sixth straight in Portland - said a lot about how far the Raptors have come, how far DeRozan has come. If there was ever any doubt about DeRozans All-Star candidacy or his growth as a leader, Saturdays game served as a silencer. He had his full arsenal on display, demanded the ball with the game in the balance and when it was all said and done he took responsibility for his blunder. No excuses, he pointed the finger at himself. Meanwhile, his team fought the good fight, something they failed to do when they last visited Portland. A year ago, the Raptors experienced the absolutely lowest point of an already low season, dropping an embarrassing 92-74 contest to the Blazers on Dec. 10, 2012, the finale of a winless five-game road trip. They lost Lowry and Andrea Bargnani to long-term injuries in the game, while Amir Johnson was ejected for uncharacteristically tossing his mouth-guard at an official. Their skid in Portland continues, they havent won in The City of Roses in seven years, but theyre not the same team that left the city in turmoil 13 months ago. "We put ourselves in a position to win the game even after all that," Casey said. "So thats what you have to ask for." Cheap Nike Air Max 270 Womens . -- Steven Stamkos scored his first goal since returning from a major injury, Ryan Callahan had his first goal with Tampa Bay, and the Lightning beat the Florida Panthers 5-4 on Thursday night. Nike Air Max 270 Just Do It Black . Rob Klinkhammer and Mikkel Boedker scored 63 seconds apart in the first period for the Coyotes, who handed the Kings their third straight loss and took over sole possession of eighth place in the Western Conference. Mike Smith made 36 saves. http://www.max270cheap.com/air-max-270-react-bauhaus-sale.html . The team let Keaton Ellerby, James Wright and Matt Halischuk become unrestricted free agents after declining to make them qualifying offers. Ellerby, 25, appeared in 51 games for the Jets last season and had two goals and four assists.The Chicago Blackhawks filled their hole at second-line centre by securing the services of a veteran at a cut-rate price. Numbers Game look at the Blackhawks signing Brad Richards. The Blackhawks Get: C Brad Richards. Richards, 34, has been a productive scorer throughout his career, but that productivity has waned as he approaches his mid-thirties. While he finished with a respectable 51 points in 82 games last season, that 0.62 points per game represented a career low and the second-lowest rate of his career was in 2012-2013, when he had 0.74 points per game. The downward trend is pretty clear at this point. He played 18:40 per game last season, his lowest average time on ice since his rookie season in 2000-2001. Given the massive contract that Richards had with the New York Rangers (nine years, $60-million), and the new recapture penalties that were imposed in the latest collective bargaining agreement, the Rangers had little choice but to buy out Richards, after paying him $33-million for the first three years of his deal. A long and productive career leaves Richards with few needs financially, so he went into his newfound free agency looking for a good fit and settled on joining the Blackhawks, a Stanley Cup contender who could use an upgrade at their second-line centre spot. In the past couple years, even as his point production has started to fall, Richards has had his zone starts tilted towards the offensive zone, with more than 65% of his shifts starting in the offensive zone. As a result, hes had strong possession stats, which may be enough to suggest that, evenn in decline, in a sheltered role, Richards would be an upgrade on Michal Handzus as Chicagos number two centre. Air Max 270 Mens Clearance. . In Chicago, there is a good opportunity for Richards to have a productive year. Any combination of the Blackhawks top scoring wingers includes Patrick Sharp, Marian Hossa, Patrick Kane and Brandon Saad, so playing with two of them ought to give Richards a chance to have decent even-strength production. Whether Richards can match last seasons scoring totals, however, probably will have some dependence on power play production and, over the past couple seasons, Richards has really struggled to produce with the man advantage. Furthermore, Richards presence likely means that top Blackhawks prospect Teuvo Teravainen wont be starting the season in Chicago and that may be fine for his overall development, but if Teravainen shows that hes ready, it would be easy enough to see Richards bumped down the depth chart, as has happened from time to time with the Rangers over the past couple seasons. There is a benefit to the contract that Richards signed with Chicago -- a one-year, $2-million deal -- in that his declining production in New York was frequently contrasted with how much money the Rangers had tied up to get him. Now, Richards is a bargain signing and if he gives Chicago decent second-line production, he would bring a positive return on investment. Scott Cullen can be reached at Scott.Cullen@bellmedia.ca and followed on Twitter at http://twitter.com/tsnscottcullen. For more, check out TSN Fantasy on Facebook. ' ' '