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Tacko and Co. Keep Raptors 905 Winless

Tacko Fall wasn’t only a spectacle, but a force Wednesday morning against the 905

Maine Red Claws 113, Raptors 905 102 | Box Score

Two-ways: Tacko Fall (Red Claws), Oshae Brissett (905),
Assignees: Dewan Hernandez, Malcolm Miller (905)

“Professional basketball is about playing 48 minutes of strong basketball, and you can’t just do one quarter at a time, and sort of pick and choose when you play hard,” – 905 Head Coach Jama Mahlalela post game.

For the second time in four days the undefeated Maine Red Claws dismantled the now 0-and-4 Raptors 905 with a combination of ruthless backcourt scoring and a taxing dose of the 7’5 Taco Fall. Red Claws guards Tremont Waters and Bryce Brown combined for 45 points, going 8-for-20 from three point range. Fall had 14 points and seven rebounds. Tyler Ennis led the 905 with 23 points and 12 assists, but also had six turnovers. Dewan Hernandez and Malcolm Miller were in Mississauga on assignment from the Parent club. They each scored 13.

The 905 have made a habit of fading in the second halves of this young season. While they were already getting outplayed by the Red Claws on Wednesday, a sequence at the end of the third quarter was particularly devastating. Waters made a layup on a defensive breakdown. Head Coach Jama Mahlalela screamed for a timeout, but the referee didn’t hear. The 905 turned over the inbounds, and Trey Davis hit a three, stretching the lead to 14. The 905 didn’t get within single digits from there on.

Maine combined to go 26-for-95 (!) from three point range in their back-to-back sweep of the 905. While the percentage isn’t stellar, it’s effective, and requires a lot of defensive focus that the 905 lacked at times in both games.

Notes:

  • 905 Assignment Notes
    • Dewan Hernandez – the Raptors’ late second round pick had a unique challenge – guard Fall. While he struggled to keep Fall from getting deep post position early, he improved (while Fall probably tired) as the game went on.
    • Offensively Hernandez is already making strides in terms of his outside shooting, making a top-of-the-key three today. At 6’11, he’s shown he’s a solid ball handler, driving and finishing from behind the arc for a couple layups today. He also made a pretty floater on  baseline drive. 6-for-13 for 13 points and eight rebounds – a solid line.
    • Malcolm Miller – even with the parent club’s injuries Miller isn’t getting significant NBA playing time, leading to today’s appearance with the 905 (he’s also eligible to play for the Raptors tonight). While Miller is generally thought of as a 3-and-D guy, he missed all four of his three point attempts today, but made five field goals in and around the rim. Mahlalela said he was pleased with Miller’s defensive effort and toughness as well.
  • 905 Affiliate Notes
    • Tyler Ennis – Playing his fourth regular season game after missing a year due to injury, Mahlalela called Wednesday his best yet. Ennis’s ability to change pace and play at his own speed has been impressive, and that speed is only increasing with each game.Ennis’s 10 field goals mostly came in the paint, with a jumper (or two, I can’t remember) mixed in, although no three point makes. He also created plenty of quality looks for his teammates off dribble penetration, leading to 12 assists.
    • “I think it’s the truest version of himself that we saw today in terms of his ability to control the flow of the game, get into the paint and finish and also fire out (for his teammates)”, Mahlalela said. “(Ennis needs to) keep working his physicality, keep working his defence, keep getting his body going. I think it’s gonna keep on climbing. I think he’s a really special player who once he gets this rust off will be able to show some things and be really effective for us.”
  • 905 Two-Way Notes
    • Oshae Brissett – with Miller inserted into the starting lineup, Brissett came off the bench.  He went 6-for-14 from the field, but 0-for-5 from distance. He made a couple pretty mid-range shots, but they weren’t in the flow of the offence, and those attempts aren’t ideal in a Raptors offence. Brissett’s crowning moment was dunking-then-flexing on Fall near the end of the fourth quarter.
  • Red Claws Two-Way Notes
    • Tacko Fall – it is staggering to see this guy in the flesh. A remarkable athlete for his size, Fall had a strong first half, getting deep position on Hernandez and attracting tons of extra attention from other defenderss. What was most interesting (to me) when projecting Fall’s NBA potential was the amount and distribution of his minutes. He came off the bench, played a total of 24 minutes, and was never on the floor for longer than five straight minutes. Fall scored 14 points on 5-for-7 shooting, and added four assists. His passing under duress will be critical for his success in the NBA.
  • Admin note:
    • Raptors Republic has a sweet discount code for Raptors 905 tickets. Follow this link and use the code RR905. https://bit.ly/2pTZgn6 . The 905’s next home game is Tuesday November 26.

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