|P. Siakam40 MIN, 32 PTS, 8 REB, 5 AST, 1 STL, 14-17 FG, 2-3 3FG, 2-2 FT, 2 BLK, 2 TO, 4 +/-|
Didn’t look comfortable initially with the presence of Draymond Green, but still made an effort to drive the hoop and attack with his spin. Several times the Raptors also managed to get Curry switched onto Siakam and tried to cause some chaos off of this mismatch. Siakam even hit an elbow three late in the first quarter to help extend an early lead.
Siakam had a dominant game and did not shy away from the biggest stage. During the third quarter he was looking for opportunities to attack Draymond. Think about that for a second. 10 months ago we were unsure whether Siakam would even be a starter, and now he’s openly attacking one of the game’s best defenders during the NBA Finals.
Oh, and he crushed a Draymond lay-up off the glass. Massive block.
|K. Leonard43 MIN, 23 PTS, 8 REB, 5 AST, 1 STL, 5-14 FG, 3-6 3FG, 10-12 FT, 0 BLK, 2 TO, 11 +/-|
He hit some shots, but as the primary focus of a great defence his overall impact on offence was intermittent. Too often his drives ended up in turnovers or a bobbled ball, generally caused by Kawhi’s struggles to read and react to a quick double team (usually involving Draymond).
This was a quiet 32 points from Kawhi. Felt like he struggled for most of the game and yet there he is. 32 points on 17 FGA. That’s wild.
|M. Gasol30 MIN, 20 PTS, 7 REB, 1 AST, 2 STL, 6-10 FG, 2-4 3FG, 6-6 FT, 1 BLK, 0 TO, 8 +/-|
More often than not he didn’t hesitate. When he had an open 3 he took it, which is significant as it is clearly a shot Golden State is willing to give up. He also was a great second line of defence, able to cheat off of Jordan Bell or Kevon Looney. Gasol also did a respectable job when doubling Curry, with the Raptors often trying to trap him near the freethrow line after fighting over the screen. We got stretches of prime Gasol tonight, and he showed again why the Raptors traded for him at the deadline.
|K. Lowry36 MIN, 7 PTS, 6 REB, 9 AST, 1 STL, 2-9 FG, 1-5 3FG, 2-2 FT, 0 BLK, 3 TO, 11 +/-|
Golden State elected to start with Klay Thompson guarding Lowry, and the length of a good defender was a challenge at first. Lowry still did an excellent job of running the offence and getting others involved, got onto the boards a little, and also drew a patented charge on Draymond, but the shot wasn’t there to start.
With all that said, I know I’m going to be ticked by people criticizing Lowry’s game because he didn’t have a big scoring output. Despite the low scoring Lowry’s stamp was all over this game for Toronto.
And he hit the dagger 3 to seal the win. Classic Lowry.
|D. Green30 MIN, 11 PTS, 2 REB, 1 AST, 1 STL, 4-9 FG, 3-7 3FG, 0-0 FT, 2 BLK, 0 TO, 2 +/-|
On the Raptors second possession Green got a wide open corner 3 and hit back-rim, and it felt like it could be another rough night for a man in a deep slump. Instead, Green followed it up on the very next possession by draining a three from just above the break. It was nice to see the shot start falling for Green tonight. The defence has been there all playoffs, but the Raptors need him to start hitting those open shots.
Danny Green is not a Conference Finals Performer, or a Second Round Performer, he is an NBA FINALS PERFORMER!
|F. VanVleet33 MIN, 15 PTS, 1 REB, 2 AST, 0 STL, 5-8 FG, 1-4 3FG, 4-6 FT, 0 BLK, 1 TO, 11 +/-|
The stage wasn’t too big for Fred Sr., as he continues to be one of the world’s great arguments for becoming a parent. While he didn’t have the great season he has more than made up for it starting against the Bucks. You still prefer him as an off-ball shooter, but he did some good things with the ball in his hands as well.
Jeff Van Gundy declared Fred as the best player in the game with 32 second left in the first half, and while I wouldn’t go that far (hello, Marc Gasol) we still have to love the overall performance on both sides from Fred.
|S. Ibaka17 MIN, 5 PTS, 3 REB, 1 AST, 0 STL, 2-7 FG, 0-2 3FG, 1-2 FT, 1 BLK, 2 TO, -1 +/-|
Serge had stretches against Cousins and held his own. Of course it helped that Cousins doesn’t look right (breathing hard, moving slow, feet stuck in mud), but Serge battled on the boards and exploited Cousins’ speed in the open court for an easy dunk in the first half.
Surprised we didn’t see Serge in more pick-and-roll/pop opportunities with how slow Cousins was moving.
|P. McCaw7 MIN, 3 PTS, 0 REB, 1 AST, 0 STL, 1-2 FG, 1-1 3FG, 0-0 FT, 0 BLK, 0 TO, -3 +/-|
I have no idea why he played in the first half, and then was very confused to see him in again at the end of the third, but he hit a big 3 at the end of the shotclock to bail out a bad possession for the Raptors.
|N. Powell5 MIN, 2 PTS, 1 REB, 0 AST, 0 STL, 0-1 FG, 0-1 3FG, 2-2 FT, 0 BLK, 0 TO, 2 +/-|
Did not get much of a look tonight. Even Patrick McCaw got more run. I think we’ll get a good Norm game at some point this series, but tonight wasn’t it.
Some weird decisions from Nurse today. Not sure why Patrick McCaw got minutes, and I’m surprised we didn’t force Cousins to defend a pick-and-roll more often when he was on the floor. But the Raptors survived and had a great defensive plan in place.
Things We Saw
- We knew for some time leading up to game 1 that the Warriors would be without the service of Kevin Durant for at least game 1 (he is currently not expected to be available for game 2), but the news of the night was the return of DeMarcus Cousins for the first time since a quad injury on April 15th. Cousins was expected to miss the rest of the season, a huge blow after missing the first half of the season recovering from a torn ACL that took place last season. It was good to see him back on the court.
- Warriors went 11 deep before we got a minute into the second quarter. They don’t have a lot of talent off the bench, but when most of the bench is of equal talent I guess you can roll them all.
- The half-court defence for Toronto remained dominant in game 1. Outside of second chance points and free throws the Raptors did a fantastic job slowing down a very potent offence. Moving forward they will need to do a better job on the defensive glass to close possessions.