Quick Reaction: Thunder 110, Raptors 109

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Image: Mark Blinch / Stringer

It was not to be.

Thunder 110 Final
Box Score
109 Raptors

A
P. Siakam38 MIN, 23 PTS, 11 REB, 5 AST, 0 STL, 10-15 FG, 2-2 3FG, 1-3 FT, 0 BLK, 5 TO, +8 +/-

Needs more shaaaatssss!!!! The only guy who could actually score in 1v1 situations. His mid-range game is becoming automatic and he can lean back for the fade from that same area too, making him a delectable (though sometimes awkward) guy to watch. Now if we ever figured out how to have any movement around him we’d be in business, but that doesn’t seem to be Nurse’s priority who is content on going with iso-Pascal.

B+
C. Boucher22 MIN, 11 PTS, 7 REB, 0 AST, 0 STL, 4-9 FG, 0-2 3FG, 3-3 FT, 2 BLK, 1 TO, -2 +/-

Got the start and was…good? No, seriously, he wasn’t a complete trainwreck. He’s been cutting to the basket better, competing for the rebounds (though his hands turn into Baynes’ at times) and resisting that urge to fire away those ill-advised threes.

A-
S. Barnes39 MIN, 18 PTS, 8 REB, 5 AST, 1 STL, 8-17 FG, 2-7 3FG, 0-0 FT, 2 BLK, 1 TO, -8 +/-

Every week you discover something about this guy and in this game what stood out for me was his strength. He can back you in and lean in to get pretty much the shot he wants. He also is significantly more confident shooting the three and gone are the days where he used to pass up open looks. Defensively, he’s been suspect, especially in transition where he over-commits to one guy too early and then is left scrambling. Nurse put him on SGA for a bit but couldn’t help stopping the dribble-penetration (nor did any other guard).

D+
F. VanVleet39 MIN, 19 PTS, 8 REB, 9 AST, 1 STL, 6-20 FG, 5-13 3FG, 2-4 FT, 0 BLK, 2 TO, +2 +/-

Hit a couple threes late in the fourth in the comeback that went nowhere, but man, he was SHUT DOWN by Dort who is a great on-ball defender. Fred didn’t have the quickness or the nous to evade a sticky defender. This was a write-off game for him where his lack of quickness was on full display. Had a chance to win the game but got it blocked. He really does kind of suck with the game on the line and handling the ball.

A
G. Trent Jr.39 MIN, 24 PTS, 4 REB, 3 AST, 2 STL, 10-17 FG, 4-8 3FG, 0-0 FT, 0 BLK, 0 TO, +8 +/-

Easily the Raptors most fluid and effortless scorer. Had the step-back and the side-step working, and didn’t force the issue when help came on the drive. He was the epitome of “let the game come to you”. Hit a big three late to give the Raptors a chance to tie on the next possession.

C+
Y. Watanabe19 MIN, 4 PTS, 2 REB, 3 AST, 0 STL, 1-4 FG, 1-4 3FG, 1-2 FT, 0 BLK, 0 TO, -2 +/-

Say one thing about Yuta: the ball never gets stuck with him. He’s the perfect middle man on the swing sequence because his decisions are quick and usually the right ones. He’s got to hit more of his clean looks, because they are available. Just like the rest of the team, he’s active but ineffective in stopping penetration, and prone to not seeing action underneath, leaving passes from opposing PGs easy to pick out.

A-
J. Champagnie12 MIN, 5 PTS, 2 REB, 0 AST, 0 STL, 2-2 FG, 0-0 3FG, 1-1 FT, 0 BLK, 0 TO, +10 +/-

Came in to give the boost that Svi couldn’t deliver and almost won the game with that tip-in. Had an insanely acrobatic layup late in the game as well, so hopefully this can be used as a boost for his season which has been in the doldrums.

D+
D. Banton11 MIN, 0 PTS, 3 REB, 1 AST, 1 STL, 0-3 FG, 0-2 3FG, 0-0 FT, 0 BLK, 1 TO, -11 +/-

Should’ve played more and relieved Fred to counter OKC’s ball pressure. But I guess the lack of a shot is too much for Nurse to overlook on some nights. His playing time inconsistency is a little puzzling.

F
S. Mykhailiuk7 MIN, 0 PTS, 1 REB, 0 AST, 1 STL, 0-3 FG, 0-2 3FG, 0-0 FT, 0 BLK, 3 TO, -1 +/-

Brutal game. No energy, no hustle which is unlike him. Nurse benched him in the first and when he came back in the second, immediately committed a careless turnover. Forgettable game.

D+
I. Bonga14 MIN, 5 PTS, 0 REB, 1 AST, 0 STL, 1-3 FG, 1-1 3FG, 2-2 FT, 1 BLK, 0 TO, -9 +/-

He’s not on the same page as what’s on the ball-handler’s mind, making for some pretty out of tune possessions. Did hit a three but the inconsistency of his play can’t possibly get him minutes right now.

D
Nick Nurse

I’m not sure Nurse actually knows how to get this group of guys to play defense for 48 minutes. He’s figuring things out on the fly just like how we’re figuring out what this team is about. I’m surprised at the lack of a counter to Dort’s defense on Fred. Or how we’re unable to consistently take advantage of our size advantage on the wings. What’s the point of length if it doesn’t buy you a leg up? This all could be acceptable if we were just good at stopping the three, but even there OKC is lighting us up at 17-40 (42.5%). So, if we can’t stop dribble penetration and can’t stop the three, what can we actually do on D? And that last play call? When has Fred going rogue late in the clock ever worked?

Things We Saw

  1. Lost the third 33-12. What the fuck?

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