Here are two teams that have carved out similar paths the last couple of seasons.
Both arguably overachieved in 2021-22, disappointed as play-in exits in April (although Diar DeRozan still has one on the Raps) and made little moves at both the trade deadline and offseason.
Toronto defeated Sacramento two Sundays ago, had an entire week off for some reason, and then blew out the Cairns Taipans. The Raptors are averaging 32 assists per game in the preseason and have shot over 50 percent from the field in both games. Three point shooting (34.3%) could use a slight uptick, but that’s a ten percent increase from last year’s dreadful display at this time. The starters should play a bit more as a dress rehearsal for the regular season. Add Gary Trent Jr. to that list, although he’s well aware of his sixth man role at the moment.
Expect Chicago’s regular starting lineup to play after sitting out in Denver. Patrick Williams has to be the X-factor entering his fourth year. Like Scottie Barnes, Williams came out of Florida State as the fourth overall pick. Pat was also one of only 10 guys leaguewide to play in all 82 games last season (Nikola Vucevic also accomplished that). Williams scored 20 points against the Nuggets on Sunday.
Tip-Off: 8pm EDT | TV: TSN 1/4
PG: Dennis Schroder, Malachi Flynn, Markquis Nowell, Jeff Dowtin Jr.
SG: O.G. Anunoby, Gary Trent Jr, Gradey Dick, Javon Freeman-Liberty
SF: Scottie Barnes, Jalen McDaniels, Garrett Temple, Ron Harper Jr.
PF: Pascal Siakam, Chris Boucher, Thaddeus Young, Mouhamadou Gueye
C: Jakob Poeltl, Precious Achiuwa, Makur Maker
PG: Alex Caruso, Ayo Dosunmu, Jevon Carter, Carlik Jones
SG: Zach LaVine, Coby White, Quenton Jackson
SF: DeMar DeRozan, Dalen Terry, Julian Phillips, Onuralp Bitim
PF: Patrick Williams, Torrey Craig, Terry Taylor, Justin Lewis
C: Nikola Vucevic, Andre Drummond, Adama Sanogo
It’s still preseason lol.
Remaining Raptors Preseason Schedule
Friday Oct 20 vs Wizards (in Toronto)