Gameday: Raptors @ Hawks, November 19 2022

An early rematch after Toronto's big win over Atlanta earlier in the season.

The Toronto Raptors are about to put their two-game winning streak up to bat against one of the (quietly) better teams in the NBA. The Raptors beat the Detroit Pistons and beat-up Miami Heat. The Atlanta Hawks are a different story this season.

Since adding Dejounte Murray, the Hawks have dramatically improved their defense, jumping from 26th last year to 8th this season. Murray is the primary driver there, per his Cleaning the Glass on/off stats. They’re great at forcing misses. The Hawks have some big wins over the Milwaukee Bucks (twice), the New Orleans Pelicans, and the Philadelphia 76ers in November. At 9-6, they’re also just ahead of the Raptors in the Eastern Conference standings at third, with Toronto at seventh at 9-7. Big game for a number of reasons.

Of course, the Raptor stomped the Hawks earlier this season. It was a Halloween massacre. They won by 30, as the Raptors bullied Trae Young into a miserable offensive game. Pascal Siakam was the best player on the court, and Scottie Barnes hit five triples. It was a statement game. Of course, since then the Raptors have suffered a huge number of injuries and only just righted the ship on the year.

For the Raptors to have a chance, they’ll need to win similar to how they did in Miami. Force the game into the mud, with a huge number of misses both ways. Then win the possession game by something like 20. A tough ask with Clint Capela suiting up for the Hawks, but it’s doable. It’ll be even more difficult with Toronto’s list of players not suiting up. Fred VanVleet, O.G. Anunoby, and Scottie Barnes will need to be absolute forces together. This will be a massive, identity-themed win if Toronto can pull it off.

Game Info

Tip-Off: 6:00 pm EST | TV: Sportsnet One | Radio: SN Now and SN 590

Raptors Lineup

So, the players out include Achiuwa (Right ankle sprain), Boucher (Non-COVID illness), Banton (Left ankle sprain), Porter Jr. (Left foot toe dislocation), Siakam (Right adductor strain), Trent Jr (Non-COVID illness). Yeah.

PG: Fred VanVleet, Jeff Dowtin Jr.,

SG: Malachi Flynn, Ron Harper Jr.

SF: O.G. Anunoby

PF: Scottie Barnes, Juancho Hernangomez

C: Thaddeus Young, Christian Koloko, Khem Birch

Hawks Lineup

Bogdan Bogdanovic (knee) is out, he hasn’t played this since having surgery on his right knee following the 2021-22 season. The rest of the team is healthy.

PG: Trae Young, Aaron Holiday

SG: Dejounte Murray, Justin Holiday Jarrett Culver, Vit Krejci

SF: De’Andre Hunter, Jalen Johnson, Tyrese Martin

PF: John Collins, AJ Griffin

C: Clint Capela, Onyeka Okongwu, Frank Kaminsky

The Line

Raps are getting +5.5 with all the injuries, and the over/under is 225.

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