Gameday: Raptors @ Warriors, January 27

Game two of the Raptors road trip runs through Chase center as they gear up to face Golden State.

The Toronto Raptors and the Golden State Warriors are two sides of the same underachieving coin this season. Both teams are performing well below expectations this season and are looking to get back on track as soon as possible. Toronto is coming into this game on a two game winning streak after shutting down the Sacramento Kings and the Golden State Warriors are coming off a win against the Memphis Grizzlies which featured a Jordan Poole game winning shot.

This will be the Raptors and Warriors second face off this season and the first one did not go well for Toronto. Back on December 18th the Golden State Warriors stunned the Raptors without Stephen Curry and Andrew Wiggins and blew them out 126-110 after Jordan Poole dropped 43 points. To lose to a team without multiple starters and their best player is really bad but there’s some hope for the second matchup despite what happened in the first game. Fred VanVleet is playing much better now than he was at that point, Precious Achiuwa’s return has given this defense some life it simply didn’t have last month when they faced off. 

Stephen Curry being back from injury puts a lot of pressure on a defense and the Raptors are no strangers to handling Stephen Curry, I imagine Toronto blitzes Steph on the ball and trusts the backline defenders to make the proper rotations afterwards, similar to how they did against Domantas Sabonis. Golden State is a team where you really have to make sure you are closing out to shooters and Toronto always closes out well. Golden State likes to run in transition so Toronto is going to have to make it a point to run with them. Pascal Siakam is the focal point of the offense so he will surely draw a lot of attention like he’s done all season but it’ll take smart decisions and ball movement after the ensuing doubles that’ll break Golden State down.

Golden State’s backcourt defense isn’t elite so Fred VanVleet should have a lot of scoring opportunities whether it be isolation or pick and roll. The bench has been playing pretty well lately, namely Chris Boucher and Precious Achiuwa and this will be huge against a team that has a less than formidable bench unit. The formula for a win today is pretty straightforward: Take advantage of their backcourt defense, move the ball after Pascal creates an advantage, contain Steph and rotate well. I expect a close matchup where they go back and forth but a Raptors win is very possible.

Game Info

Tip-Off: 10pm EST | TV: TSN Sportsnet One/4K | Radio: Sportsnet 590

Raptors Lineup

Dalano Banton (hip) are questionable.

PG: Fred VanVleet, Malachi Flynn, 

SG: Gary Trent Jr.

SF: O.G. Anunoby, , Juancho Hernangomez, Joe Wieskamp

PF: Scottie Barnes, Chris Boucher, Thaddeus Young

C: Pascal Siakam, Precious Achiuwa, Khem Birch

Warriors Lineup

Andrew Wiggins is questionable with an illness, Andre Igoudala is out with a hip injury

PG: Stephen Curry, Ty Jerome

SG: Jordan Poole, Donte Divencenzo,

SF: Klay Thompson, Moses Moody

PF: Draymond Green, Jonathan Kuminga, Anthony Lamb

C: Kevon Looney, Jamychal Green

The Line

Golden State is favored by 5 points, the O/U is 237.5

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