Photo Credit: Trung Ho / trungho.ca
Raptors 905 111, Windy City Bulls 91 | Box Score
Two-ways: Chris Boucher, Jordan Loyd (905), Rawle Alkins (Bulls)
Deng Adel and Jordan Loyd opened the night with back-to-back 3-pointers in what would become a sign of the impressive offensive efficiency to come for Raptors 905, as they defeated Windy City Bulls 111-91 at Sears Centre in Hoffman Estates, Illinois, on Sunday night.
Chris Boucher led the 905 once again with 24 points and 16 rebounds, as fellow two-way player Jordan Loyd added 20 points and four assists. Six players scored in double digits for the 905, including Uche Ofoegbu (12), Deng Adel (14), Kay Felder (12) and Christian Watford (15).
C.J. Fair recorded 19 points and 8 rebounds for the Bulls while Windsor, ON, native Mychal Mulder scored 15 points and grabbed 9 rebounds.
The 905 started the game on a 22-6 run, and did not look like a team with an offseason 10-player roster turnover. They ran their offence early on with an assuring patience, moving the ball around for high-percentage looks, waiting for the right shot even if their offence ran late into the clock. The first quarter alone saw six 3-pointers made by five different players along with 9 team assists.
The Bulls, who were already off to a slow start this season (1-3), were without former Phoenix Sun Tyler Ulis, who was ruled out about 20 minutes before tip-off with a left hip injury. The Bulls struggled to find quality shots against the 905’s defence, starting the game 5 for 21 in the first quarter, and eventually finishing the night shooting 38% from the field while hitting only 6 of 30 from 3-point range.
Boucher did a little bit of everything in the first half, from blocking shots, to making 3-pointers and sinking hook shots. On one play in the first quarter, Boucher forced a Bulls turnover in the paint, then took the ball coast-to-coast for a Euro-step finish at the basket – a highlight as good as any to showcase his unique versatility at 6’11”. He finished the first half with 16 points (including 4-6 from long distance), six rebounds, two blocks and zero turnovers.
The Bulls, who have been outscored in third quarters in their past three games by 107-61, came out of halftime with a quick 7-2 run. The momentum looked like it might have shifted into the Bulls’ favour mid-way through the quarter, after Mulder took a charge from Felder who then also received a technical foul for a brief exchange with an official after the offensive foul call.
The Bulls managed to take advantage, trimming the 905 lead to 13 points with 2:05 left in the third quarter. But whatever momentum the Bulls may have tried to create to close the period, Myck Kabongo hit a 3-pointer on an isolation play with 6.7 seconds left in the quarter to break the short-lived run, his first 3-point field goal of the season.
Led by two-way Bulls guard Rawle Alkins, who scored 11 of his 16 points in the final frame, the Bulls managed to keep the lead to 14 points for the opening minutes of the fourth, but 3-pointers by Felder and Deng on back-to-back possessions grew the 905 lead to 91-73 with 8:39 left in the game, effectively taking away any chances for a last-minute come-from-behind effort and eventually sending the 905 home to an improved 3-1 record on the season. Raptors 905 will be back at Paramount Fine Foods Centre in Mississauga on Tuesday to face Erie Bayhawks for an 11 A.M. tipoff.
- Two-Way 905 Player Notes:
- Chris Boucher continued to show why he is a unique prospect to keep watching on a game-to-game basis. His statistics are impressive, with totals of 24 points, 16 rebounds, four blocks, one steal, while shooting 9-19 from the field (6-10 3PM), but watching him assume multiple roles from possession-to-possession is a unique element to witness. He is capable of defending different spots on the floor, while having the ability to be a threat on offence in a number of different ways. It’s a little bit like watching a player switch from being a guard to a center from one play to the next.
- Jordan Loyd had another impressive night, scoring 20 points on 6 of 13 shooting (including 6 for 6 at the free throw line), while adding five rebounds and four assists. The parent club is crowded at the guard position, so it will be interesting to see where Loyd’s opportunities will come as the season progresses.
- Other 905 Player Notes
- Uche Ofoegbu played significant minutes tonight with without Kyle Collinsworth (ankle) and Malachi Richardson (not on assignment) in the lineup. Ofoegbu, who was averaging only 8.2 minutes per game before tonight’s contest, was in the starting lineup against the Bulls, scoring 12 points in 23 minutes. The UNLV grad who made the 905 this year through open tryouts, showed that he may be relied on more in the rotation moving forward.
- Bulls notes:
- Tyler Ulis (two-way) was rule out last-minute tonight with a left hip injury. The former Phoenix Sun guard had been the leading scorer for the Bulls, averaging 22.8 points, 8.5 steals and 2.0 assists this season. After spending two seasons with the Suns, Ulis is hoping to crack the backup point guard rotation with Chicago currently occupied by Cameron Payne and Ryan Arcidiacono.