Quick Reaction: Knicks 116, Raptors 125

The Raptors pick up a well needed win at home before a long western road trip.

Box Score
S. Barnes37 MIN, 19 PTS, 7 REB, 6 AST, 1 STL, 7-15 FG, 1-4 3FG, 4-5 FT, 2 BLK, 0 TO, 11 +/-

A quiet first-half performance from Scottie, but he came alive in the fourth when the Raptors needed him. He flew around on defense when they put the Knicks in zone and found crafty ways to get points when they needed some. It wasn’t quite the 30 point game he had against the Knicks the last time these teams met, but Scottie showed up when it mattered most.

P. Siakam34 MIN, 24 PTS, 7 REB, 6 AST, 1 STL, 9-21 FG, 3-6 3FG, 3-6 FT, 1 BLK, 1 TO, -8 +/-

With no OG, Pascal demands even more defensive attention than normal. His shot didn’t always fall, but he still found other ways to be effective as usual.

P. Achiuwa36 MIN, 12 PTS, 11 REB, 1 AST, 2 STL, 2-4 FG, 0-0 3FG, 8-10 FT, 0 BLK, 2 TO, 3 +/-

The size and physicality that Precious plays with are crucial against a team like the Knicks, who bolster a lot of strong, bruting bigs. It wasn’t his strongest half going into the break but he turned it around in the second half. He was tremendous on the glass and even earned a career-high in free throw attempts.

G. Trent Jr.35 MIN, 24 PTS, 3 REB, 2 AST, 2 STL, 9-17 FG, 6-10 3FG, 0-0 FT, 1 BLK, 1 TO, 12 +/-

We saw a different Gary Trent Jr tonight. One who moved the ball in transition and even finished a nasty dunk on Jericho Sims. When both Gary and Fred are hitting, this team can be really tough to play and we saw that tonight.

F. VanVleet34 MIN, 28 PTS, 2 REB, 3 AST, 2 STL, 8-19 FG, 4-8 3FG, 8-8 FT, 0 BLK, 1 TO, 6 +/-

This is a perplexing game to grade for Fred. He was phenomenal in the first half. Nearly perfect. When that rhythm continued into the 3rd, he nearly shot the Raptors out of this one. Forcing bad shots which led to frustration and then a technical almost entirely killed the momentum the Raptors had built up to that point. If Trent + Barnes and the bench don’t perform the way they did in the fourth quarter tonight, we could be having an entirely different conversation. Outside of his horrendous 3rd quarter, it was another great game in a string of great performances for Fred recently.

T. Young15 MIN, 4 PTS, 3 REB, 1 AST, 1 STL, 2-3 FG, 0-1 3FG, 0-0 FT, 0 BLK, 2 TO, 7 +/-

The veteran saw early minutes at the expense of Precious’s early foul trouble. He played well plugging holes and capitalizing on easy looks around the rim.

C. Boucher23 MIN, 14 PTS, 7 REB, 0 AST, 3 STL, 4-6 FG, 1-2 3FG, 5-6 FT, 0 BLK, 0 TO, 14 +/-

Boucher’s length and tenacity on the glass lend themselves well to a matchup against New York (in particular when they’re missing Robinson). The spacing he provided in the bench lineups is always a welcomed addition.

J. Hernangomez16 MIN, 0 PTS, 5 REB, 2 AST, 0 STL, 0-2 FG, 0-2 3FG, 0-0 FT, 0 BLK, 0 TO, 14 +/-

Perhaps the biggest surprise of the evening; Juancho playing crucial fourth-quarter minutes. While he had limited chance to impact the game offensively, his length on the glass and energy defensively was a well-needed assist off the bench tonight.

J. Dowtin Jr.05 MIN, 0 PTS, 0 REB, 0 AST, 0 STL, 0-2 FG, 0-0 3FG, 0-0 FT, 0 BLK, 0 TO, -7 +/-

Got some early run, but it wasn’t really much to gauge from.

Nick Nurse

For all his troubles this season, Nurse found the right lineup tonight in the fourth, and trusted them to see it through. At a time when wins are tough to come by, it’s just nice to see the Raptors pull one through. Siakam not having to play 40 minutes doesn’t hurt either.

Things We Saw

  1. The win tonight won’t do much to stop the vultures from circling the team, there were reportedly representatives from the Bucks, Timberwolves, Grizzlies, Pacers, and Clippers in Toronto to watch the game according to Adam Laskaris of Daily Hive.
  2. Nurse, to his credit, went 10 men deep into the rotation early into the second quarter tonight. Worth noting as well that Dowtin got an (albeit, quite short) stint tonight ahead of Flynn.

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