Quick Reaction: Pistons 129, Raptors 105

7 mins read

Plenty of teams have dealt with goofy lineups this season because of protocols. Unfortunately, it was the Raptors’ turn.

DET Pistons 129 Final
Box Score
105 TOR Raptors

A. Baynes23 MIN, 13 PTS, 4 REB, 1 AST, 1 STL, 4-7 FG, 1-3 3FG, 4-4 FT, 0 BLK, 1 TO, -4 +/-

Good energy from Baynes against one of his former teams. Set screens to free Powell, grabbed offensive boards, and finished inside a little better than he has been this season. Solid game.

Y. Watanabe10 MIN, 0 PTS, 4 REB, 0 AST, 0 STL, 0-3 FG, 0-2 3FG, 0-0 FT, 0 BLK, 0 TO, -6 +/-

Yuta started for the first time in his 55-game career but was barely noticeable. Only played seven minutes in the first half. Second half wasn’t any better, air balling an open three and missing a transition layup. Unfortunately Watanabe simply wasn’t ready to provide production in a starting role.

N. Powell38 MIN, 36 PTS, 5 REB, 1 AST, 1 STL, 14-20 FG, 5-8 3FG, 3-3 FT, 0 BLK, 4 TO, -12 +/-

Once again, starter Norm ignited the offence early with 23 first half points, 8-10 shooting and making all four of his threes. Predictably had to do even more on offence than he has been lately. Resulted in four turnovers but that was to be expected. Second straight 30-plus scoring game. Powell finished one point shy of tying his career-high.

K. Lowry35 MIN, 21 PTS, 4 REB, 6 AST, 1 STL, 5-11 FG, 3-5 3FG, 8-9 FT, 1 BLK, 1 TO, -10 +/-

Lowry is used to playing minutes with the second unit. So essentially this game was an extension of that. Continued his hot shooting as of late with 12 points and 4 assists in the first quarter. But the team predictably fell apart when he had to take a breather. Reserves missed plenty of open shots that would have been assists for Lowry. Cloning Kyle would have been nice. One Lowry can only do so much.

T. Davis21 MIN, 6 PTS, 3 REB, 2 AST, 2 STL, 2-11 FG, 0-5 3FG, 2-3 FT, 0 BLK, 3 TO, -7 +/-

Davis made his third start of the season but was a negative across the board with untimely turnovers, missed open shots and silly fouls. The most brutal foul was on Dennis Smith Jr. at half court with the Pistons in the bonus. Tipped in his own miss early third for his only made basket before garbage time. In my opinion, this was his worst performance of the season.

D. Bembry27 MIN, 0 PTS, 1 REB, 5 AST, 0 STL, 0-1 FG, 0-0 3FG, 0-0 FT, 1 BLK, 1 TO, -23 +/-

Bembry deservedly has been playing much more as of late, but was guilty of trying to do too much. Drove into traffic without a plan a couple times. Bembry did have five assists.

C. Boucher24 MIN, 18 PTS, 8 REB, 1 AST, 1 STL, 5-11 FG, 1-5 3FG, 7-9 FT, 2 BLK, 3 TO, -24 +/-

Boucher was the lone bright spot off the bench, no surprise there. Took advantage rolling on passes from Lowry and one beauty pass from Powell in the 4th quarter.

M. Thomas22 MIN, 11 PTS, 0 REB, 0 AST, 0 STL, 4-7 FG, 2-3 3FG, 1-2 FT, 0 BLK, 0 TO, -20 +/-

Thomas is simply in a funk. He came in shooting 3-16 since January 31 and missed both of his three point attempts in the first half. Was also beat off the bounce by Rodney McGruder for a and-1 and was subbed out right after. Did manage to make a couple of threes in the fourth. Hopefully that’s a turning point because Thomas needs to make shots to stay on the court.

P. Watson18 MIN, 0 PTS, 4 REB, 0 AST, 0 STL, 0-3 FG, 0-3 3FG, 0-0 FT, 0 BLK, 0 TO, -4 +/-

Watson got 19 minutes of run. Did one of the better jobs of closing out on Detroit’s surprisingly potent shooters. But like almost every other Raptor reserve, he couldn’t make an open three.

S. Johnson17 MIN, 0 PTS, 1 REB, 1 AST, 0 STL, 0-3 FG, 0-2 3FG, 0-0 FT, 1 BLK, 1 TO, -10 +/-

Stanley got an extended look because of Davis and Watanabe’s struggles. But he couldn’t find his corner three shot, going 0-3, including an air ball.

Nick Nurse

Sergio Scariolo was acting head coach for the second straight game. It’s asking a lot to be on the same page defensively without three of your best defenders in Siakam, Anunoby and VanVleet. Detroit put up 43 first quarter points, tied for the most the Raptors have given up this season. Had to play a box-and-one on Wayne Ellington at one point to temporarily slow him down. Key word: temporarily. As for the offence, the Raptors got plenty of open looks but couldn’t make them. One can argue that Scariolo should have taken out Davis earlier. Interesting decision not to try the 905 guys in Harris and Hall, considering what the other reserves were doing. Mama said there would be days like this.

Things We Saw

  1. Only four Raptors made a field goal in the first half, even though the Raptors did manage 60 points. Lowry tried to get some of his struggling teammates involved, but his efforts were in vain. Overall, Raptors not named Powell, Lowry, Boucher, Baynes or Thomas shot 2-21.
  2. Wayne Ellington shot only 26% from three in February. Safe to say that slump is over. Despite that, he was still at 41% from deep this season. Ellington tied a career-high with eight threes in this game, so that percentage is about to go back up.