Quick Reaction: Jazz 82, Raptors 114

The Quick Reaction is back! The Raptors beat the Jazz as Freddie plays off the ball.

Rap Up has Oren and Zarar:

Box Score
S. Barnes17 MIN, 8 PTS, 5 REB, 3 AST, 2 STL, 3-5 FG, – 3FG, 2-6 FT, 1 BLK, 2 TO, 10 +/-

The Rookie of the Year award is nice, but Scottie will need to make significant strides in his sophomore season to keep pace with the lofty expectations fans have. He was careless with the ball tonight, particularly in transition, but he has proven he normally excels with those split second decisions. I love it whenever Scottie decides to use that sudden Jack-in-the-Box athleticism. We all know he is an athletic marvel, but it always catches me off guard. Loved his effort on glass tonight too!

O. Anunoby15 MIN, 5 PTS, 2 REB, 1 AST, 0 STL, 1-2 FG, – 3FG, 2-2 FT, 1 BLK, 2 TO, 1 +/-

With OG looking for a bigger role on offense, it will be interesting to see what improvements he makes to justify the change. Raptors fans who do not believe he can be more than an elite 3&D player will point to the two times he attacked the basket tonight. One possession resulted in him falling down and the other was a turnover after OG dribbled the ball off his body. It also did not help that his only bucket was a catch-and-shoot three from the wing off penetration. His best moment came in isolation against Jordan Clarkson, as he suffocated the former Sixth Man of the Year. We would all love if OG took that elusive next step, but even if that does not happen, there is comfort in knowing he is one of the best at what he does well.

P. Siakam16 MIN, 7 PTS, 4 REB, 2 AST, 1 STL, 3-9 FG, – 3FG, 0-0 FT, 0 BLK, 4 TO, 6 +/-

Pascal looked rough at first. He was 1-of-5 at one point and missed easy looks at the rim, but this year’s preseason tour is not about what he looks like in isolation or in the 5-out set. Instead, it is about the potential synergy he manufactures with his team. We saw everything we needed to see during the playoff series against the 76ers. Pascal is a legit talent but can he build on what he was doing last year with his playmaking? Can he figure out spacing in sets that feature Scottie? I also pray we see more of the Pascal and Koloko pick-and-roll because that was fun. The journey to being a top five player begins now.

G. Trent Jr.18 MIN, 9 PTS, 3 REB, 2 AST, 0 STL, 3-5 FG, – 3FG, 1-2 FT, 0 BLK, 1 TO, 7 +/-

I feel like we are going to be saying this often this season for several players, but this is a big year for Gary Trent Jr. We know what we’re going to get from Gary but his future with the team hinges on what he can add to his skillset. He willingly attacked the basket a few times and knocked down shots off the dribble and in catch-and-shoot situations. His offensive repertoire translates to a postseason environment; so it will be interesting to see what this year’s final product looks like.

F. VanVleet10 MIN, 3 PTS, 3 REB, 1 AST, 0 STL, 1-2 FG, – 3FG, 0-0 FT, 0 BLK, 1 TO, 1 +/-

Freddie is such a showman. He gave the Edmonton crowd a little something extra as he got into his defensive stance against Colin Sexton. He also probably remembered how Sexton treated our defense last year in Cleveland. We know what Fred is and what he brings to the table. Hopefully someone emerges as a backup point guard so we can get “Off-ball Freddie” all season.

P. Achiuwa15 MIN, 10 PTS, 5 REB, 0 AST, 0 STL, 4-8 FG, – 3FG, 1-2 FT, 0 BLK, 1 TO, 0 +/-

Is anything more elegant and terrifying at the same time than Precious Achiuwa barrelling down the lane in transition? Signs are pointing towards year two of Precious being a spectacular rollercoaster. He just pops and passes the eye test with flying colours. He reminds me of someone who is realizing that he can do whatever he wants. Precious almost looks surprised when he pulls off a move and it works or it results in the space he wanted. The hype train has left the station. MIP is within the realm of possibilities.

T. Young05 MIN, 0 PTS, 1 REB, 2 AST, 0 STL, 0-1 FG, – 3FG, 0-0 FT, 0 BLK, 0 TO, 1 +/-

Thad only played five minutes in the first half in a connective tissue type of role. Props to him for suiting up in the debut.

C. Boucher14 MIN, 11 PTS, 10 REB, 1 AST, 1 STL, 4-9 FG, – 3FG, 2-2 FT, 1 BLK, 0 TO, 16 +/-

Boucher did not look good in the first half against Utah’s starters but looked explosive in the second half against the bench. Truthfully, Chris could struggle all preseason and he would still be good in my books after the admirable performance he put on against Philly. It is nice to know we won’t have to go through the process of him figuring out his role.

M. Flynn18 MIN, 8 PTS, 0 REB, 0 AST, 0 STL, 3-5 FG, – 3FG, 0-0 FT, 1 BLK, 0 TO, 14 +/-

Even the most hardcore of Flynn detractors are holding out hope that he can carry over some of that summertime magic into the regular season. His dribble and shot looked good today but I hope Nurse can put him in PnR scenarios more often over the next few games. He doesn’t fit “Vision 6’9” so he will have to prove he can be excellent at controlling the offense.

C. Koloko17 MIN, 7 PTS, 3 REB, 0 AST, 0 STL, 3-5 FG, – 3FG, 1-2 FT, 0 BLK, 2 TO, 15 +/-

Koloko had an impressive debut for a second round rookie. There were a few mental miscues like the defensive three-second violation. Mike Conley also pulled a fast one on him. But there were also several encouraging sequences such as being a PnR dance partner with Pascal and the offensive putback off the glass! I wish Kelly Olynyk would have played more because it would have been great to see Koloko get additional reps playing defense on the perimeter.

J. Hernangomez12 MIN, 3 PTS, 3 REB, 1 AST, 1 STL, 1-3 FG, – 3FG, 0-0 FT, 0 BLK, 0 TO, 12 +/-

This will be the first and last time I make this joke, but can Bo Cruz play that hustle role well enough to be a legitimate threat to Young, Porter, or Boucher’s playing time? Jauncho needs to be the player the Raptors hoped Yuta was, someone who can knock down the three and play their heart out on defense. He may sacrifice a bit on the defensive end, but Juancho is certainly capable of knocking down open threes. He shot 1-of-3 tonight, with his one make violently banking off the glass.

K. Birch11 MIN, 5 PTS, 5 REB, 0 AST, 0 STL, 1-4 FG, – 3FG, 3-4 FT, 1 BLK, 0 TO, 12 +/-

Birch played in limited minutes, almost got injured, and showed off his old-man strength. So – just another day at the office.

D. Banton11 MIN, 9 PTS, 3 REB, 0 AST, 2 STL, 4-6 FG, – 3FG, 1-1 FT, 0 BLK, 1 TO, 15 +/-

While Flynn versus Banton won’t inspire heated discussions like Ford and Calderon did, Raptors fans will be treated to the sequel of the battle for the backup point guard position. Banton embodies controlled chaos in transition and is special to watch. Banton could have the upper hand during the recklessness of the regular season, but he will need to improve his half-court skillset if he wants to play in the postseason.

J. Jackson15 MIN, 10 PTS, 2 REB, 0 AST, 1 STL, 4-5 FG, – 3FG, 2-2 FT, 1 BLK, 2 TO, 9 +/-

Like some of his teammates, the night did not start well for Josh Jackson after two unforced turnovers. By the end of the night, he cemented his case as the shiny new toy on the roster that some fans will go to war for. He popped in transition and on defense but his prior shooting woes may hold him back on a team that desperately needs it.

D. Wilson14 MIN, 7 PTS, 6 REB, 3 AST, 0 STL, 3-5 FG, – 3FG, 0-0 FT, 1 BLK, 3 TO, 9 +/-

Wilson may have stuffed the stat sheet in his limited time on the court but I just do not see how he cracks the rotation if everyone is healthy. If Koloko periodically shows flashes, that alone will be enough to keep Wilson off the court.

Things We Saw

  1. The introduction of transition take fouls is going to be an advantage for the Raptors all year. Even if we do not lead the league in deflections again, our defense is tailor-made to get out and run.
  2. I have not been this intrigued about Raptors preseason games in quite some time. There are interesting bench options, players throughout the rotation jockeying for positioning in the hierarchy, and a healthy mix of young players and veterans.
  3. Toronto was one of the worst shooting teams last season. The team averaged just under 35 per cent from deep last year. Tonight, they shot 38 per cent in a rec league environment.

Leave a Comment