Quick Reaction: Trail Blazers 106, Raptors 112

8 mins read
Portland 106 Final
Box Score
112 Toronto

 B+
D. Carroll32 MIN, 5 PTS, 4 REB, 1 AST, 0 STL, 1-5 FG, 1-3 3FG, 2-4 FT, 1 BLK, 1 TO, 4 +/-Played tenacious defense for pockets of the second quarter as part of a 13-2 Raptor run to close the final minutes of the first half. As is usually the case, DC’s offense was largely reliant on his production from deep, and tonight was no different. Just 1 long distance shot means just 5 points, but a +4 ain’t bad.

A+
S. Ibaka34 MIN, 18 PTS, 10 REB, 2 AST, 2 STL, 8-15 FG, 2-5 3FG, 0-0 FT, 1 BLK, 1 TO, 2 +/-Ibaka’s perimeter scoring got stronger as the game went on. It started with a strong start to the second half with a jumper, an altered shot, and a put-back jam in transition. And strong inside moves, mixed in with a long distance stroke in the fourth quarter really helped create separation. Ibaka’s defense is obviously an upgrade, but being this good in the offense, and this early in his time in Toronto is a really really good sign.

A+
J. Valanciunas22 MIN, 15 PTS, 7 REB, 1 AST, 0 STL, 7-8 FG, 0-0 3FG, 1-2 FT, 1 BLK, 1 TO, 6 +/-Absolutely loved what he had to offer; the matchup with Nurkic seemed to be favourable right from the tip. Even Casey would it admit it’s hard to argue with this kind of efficiency and contribution on the glass. If having Ibaka in the mix means JV is going to play like this consistently to keep himself on the floor, sign me up.

A+
D. DeRozan36 MIN, 33 PTS, 6 REB, 2 AST, 2 STL, 9-16 FG, 0-2 3FG, 15-16 FT, 1 BLK, 4 TO, 9 +/-Started off strong, with a floater to close the first that gave the Raps some momentum. I liked his overall aggressiveness throughout the night, as he was clearly looking for his shot and getting to the line (15/16 on the night), leading to another 30+ point game on 50%+ from the field. If I were to nitpick, the turnovers, especially off of double teams and as the ball handler at the top of the key, really could’ve been avoided.

A-
C. Joseph33 MIN, 14 PTS, 1 REB, 6 AST, 1 STL, 6-12 FG, 1-1 3FG, 1-1 FT, 0 BLK, 1 TO, 1 +/-Another solid night for CoJo in Lowry’s absence, which is a welcome sight for Raptors fans. For what has been a disastrous first half of the season for Joseph, it’s clear that a starting role and some wins have proved to be enough to get him going again. His game has always been somewhat subtle, but as a starter, it’s nice to see double digit scoring and 5-plus assists in back-to-back games.

B+
P. Tucker21 MIN, 2 PTS, 1 REB, 1 AST, 0 STL, 1-1 FG, 0-0 3FG, 0-0 FT, 0 BLK, 0 TO, 6 +/-The lack of sleep to start the weekend may have finally caught up to PJ, at least early on, but his usual energy and defensive tenacity made a huge difference in the second half, as he made life very difficult for Allen Crabbe and the Portland wings. As we should expect on some nights, the offense and rebounding wasn’t exactly a factor, but the +6 is somewhat indicative.

B+
P. Patterson19 MIN, 6 PTS, 1 REB, 0 AST, 1 STL, 2-5 FG, 2-5 3FG, 0-0 FT, 1 BLK, 0 TO, 2 +/-I’m willing to give Patterson at least a couple of games until we truly judge his performance, but I loved his defensive effort tonight along with his two 3’s.

 A-
D. Wright15 MIN, 11 PTS, 2 REB, 1 AST, 0 STL, 5-9 FG, 1-3 3FG, 0-0 FT, 0 BLK, 0 TO, 5 +/-Once again, didn’t look out of place at all in running the Raptors offense. Mixed in a three point stroke, with strong and decisive takes to the rack. Wright was a +5 in 15 minutes, which for a rookie point guard (in Lowry’s absence) is so crucial for this team.

B+
N. Powell12 MIN, 8 PTS, 4 REB, 1 AST, 0 STL, 3-6 FG, 0-1 3FG, 2-2 FT, 0 BLK, 1 TO, -3 +/-Had 3 impressive drives in the second quarter, including back-to-back takes with the left hand. Loved his tenacity attacking, and his finishing ability which was missing earlier in the year.

C
L. Nogueira10 MIN, 0 PTS, 2 REB, 1 AST, 1 STL, 0-0 FG, 0-0 3FG, 0-0 FT, 1 BLK, 1 TO, -7 +/-Nogeuira’s production was once again limited, and was good for another illegal screen in the process. With Ibaka and JV remaining the core pieces inside, at least for the moment, you’ve got to figure the best from Bebe will be required to keep him in the game consistently.

B-
J. Poeltl6 MIN, 0 PTS, 1 REB, 0 AST, 0 STL, 0-1 FG, 0-0 3FG, 0-2 FT, 0 BLK, 0 TO, 5 +/-Had a typical Poeltl appearance tonight on defense, and was virtually mistake free, save for a couple of ticky-tack fouls. If not for a missed layup inside, and a couple of missed free throws, he could’ve made an offensive contribution as well.

A+
Dwane CaseyIt’s hard to pin anything solely against Casey when Lowry is out of this lineup and the Raps still find a way to win. I liked the effort in closing each of the quarters, and the second half effort was definitely strong. And even in a game where DeRozan was dominant, I loved the decision to consistently give Ibaka looks down the stretch. An inside-out offensive game plan coming down the stretch – yes folks, that actually happened.

THINGS WE SAW

  1. Ibaka baby! Serge was simply terrific in the fourth quarter of this one, with crucial inside buckets, and a three-pointer which helped sink the Blazers’ spirits. And for Raptors fans well…we haven’t seen this kind of a power forward in a very long time.
  2. DeMar’s scoring prowess. DeMar’s scoring has just been spectacular this season, and tonight was more of the same. DeMar was able to get where he wanted to on the floor, got to the line 16 times, and could’ve gotten at least 3 more foul calls in this one. We’re watching an elite scorer put his mark on the league.
  3. Just wait for Kyle. With word that Lowry’s injury will be day-to-day, one has to wonder what this team can be with the true engine back in the rotation. Pre trade-deadline, both of the Raptors’ past 2 games would’ve likely been losses. With the key contributions made by Ibaka and Tucker, the Raptors have been able to absorb the loss of Lowry meaning that with his return, this team could be very good.

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