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Game 21 - Nets vs. Raptors - Sunday, January 29, 6:00 p.m.

Over the next few games, the Nets will have an opportunity to prove whether they are legitimate playoff contenders in the woeful Eastern Conference. In spite of their 2-9 start, they are only a game and a half behind the eighth place Bucks and tied with the spiraling Knicks at 7-13. Just behind them are the Raptors at 6-14. The Nets, with five wins in the last 10 are doing as well as any team in the bottom half of the East.

The Nets catch another break Sunday with Andrea Bargnani (calf) out indefinitely for the Raptors. Perhaps Jose Calderon will be distracted by trade rumors. DeMar DeRozan? He's been in a shooting slump.While the Nets are surging, Toronto is only 2-8 over the last 10. Linas Kleiza will get the start at PF and look for Jerryd Bayless to get minutes in the backcourt as well.

The big question for the Nets is health ... again. Team officials seem confident MarShon Brooks' achilles problem is more about minutes than structural issues. If he plays, it will be sparingly. No word on Mehmet Okur's recurring back spasms or Shelden Williams' sore wrist or DeShawn Stevenson's balky knee. To fill in, Jordan Williams has been recalled from Springfield. Deron Williams is healthy and with his 49.3% shooting last week, he's gotten his season shooting percentages up to 40% overall and 35% from deep.