Quick Reaction: Raptors 108, Celtics 117

6 mins read

I can’t believe we lost to an anthropomorphized bowl of clam chowder.

Toronto 108 Final
Box Score
117 Boston

P. Siakam36 MIN, 6 PTS, 4 REB, 7 AST, 1 STL, 3-6 FG, 0-0 3FG, 0-0 FT, 0 BLK, 2 TO, 1 +/-

Had a tough time finding his way to the rim – the Celtics schemed him pretty well – but instead of pouring in points, he spread the love. Lots of spicy passes tonight, and I thought his defense was paramount to the Raptors effort tonight.

K. Leonard37 MIN, 33 PTS, 4 REB, 2 AST, 4 STL, 10-19 FG, 2-8 3FG, 11-11 FT, 0 BLK, 1 TO, -3 +/-

He’s incredible. We’re lucky to have him on this squad because, wow, he’s great. His strength and composure drips off of him with every step. Sucks to lose when he plays this well.

S. Ibaka34 MIN, 22 PTS, 10 REB, 0 AST, 0 STL, 10-21 FG, 0-3 3FG, 2-3 FT, 0 BLK, 1 TO, -6 +/-

I figured he would put up a lot of shots tonight, and he didn’t fare so bad as the second option. He was aggressive on the glass and had good energy for most of the game.

K. Lowry34 MIN, 10 PTS, 6 REB, 7 AST, 1 STL, 3-10 FG, 1-5 3FG, 3-3 FT, 1 BLK, 1 TO, -7 +/-

It’s crazy to think he used to hit 3 triples a game on 40-percent from downtown. He’s nowhere near that player right now and his inability to go toe-to-toe with players of Irving’s ilk is hamstringing the Raps a little bit. He’s as wily and competitive as ever, but gamesmanship isn’t going to beat everyone.

D. Green31 MIN, 15 PTS, 6 REB, 1 AST, 0 STL, 6-15 FG, 3-8 3FG, 0-0 FT, 1 BLK, 2 TO, -7 +/-

Was hung out to dry on offense a few times too many and it skewed how sharp he actually was. Was really good on the chase tonight.

N. Powell24 MIN, 11 PTS, 1 REB, 1 AST, 2 STL, 5-9 FG, 1-2 3FG, 0-0 FT, 0 BLK, 0 TO, -8 +/-

Super crisp tonight. Quality possessions when he was asked to create, and quick decisions when he was attacking off-ball. Really liked this game for him as he builds toward his potential. Something I have a tough time placing.

F. VanVleet18 MIN, 0 PTS, 2 REB, 2 AST, 1 STL, 0-3 FG, 0-2 3FG, 0-0 FT, 0 BLK, 1 TO, -3 +/-

This was a stinker. He wasn’t able to generate anything really, and he needs to be more than a guy who brings it across half.

G. Monroe15 MIN, 11 PTS, 9 REB, 0 AST, 0 STL, 4-6 FG, 0-0 3FG, 3-4 FT, 0 BLK, 2 TO, -5 +/-

Such a stressful first half, and a terrific second. He matched up fairly well with Baynes, and he was a force in the middle during the Raptors run in the 4th. Can’t complain about this performance from ‘Moose’ tonight.

D. Wright12 MIN, 0 PTS, 0 REB, 0 AST, 0 STL, 0-3 FG, 0-1 3FG, 0-0 FT, 0 BLK, 0 TO, -7 +/-

The second half of a very disappointing bench-guard rotation. When Nurse shortens the bench, he might expect that everyone will leave an imprint on the game. Wright and VanVleet were both ghosts tonight, and it hurt the Raptors immensely early on.

Nick Nurse

The decision to go without Lowry-Siakam-Leonard in the second ended up being pretty bad. From there on out his decision making was decent enough. If the Raptors play the Celtics in the playoffs, there’s going to have to be a healthy chunk of time dedicated to how they might defend Irving.

Things We Saw

  1. Irving eviscerated the Raptors tonight. He was extremely dynamic making plays, and not just the flashy ones. Some of the guile and poise we’re used to seeing from Lowry, Irving displayed. Hitting massive shots, scooping up loose balls, and setting up his teammates an absurd amount of times.
  2. Lowry’s drop-off as a shooter continues to worry everyone. There’s no replacement for what he brings. This isn’t a “by-committee” fix, Lowry needs to sort out his jumper, because it unlocks a great deal of stuff for this offense. He’s so limited in his current state.
  3. VanVleet and Wright can’t perform this way, ever. Scheme, maladies, whatever it is, it can’t really happen this way. They’re both high-quality bench guards and the Raptors – and Kyle Lowry’s – season won’t unfold as it’s meant to if Nurse can’t reliably turn to the bench.

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