Quick Reaction: Raptors 97, Wolves 94

Transition offense clinic, babeee!

Player grades shortly. Comment away.

Box Score
O. Anunoby34 MIN, 20 PTS, 6 REB, 1 AST, 2 STL, 7-13 FG, 4-9 3FG, 2-2 FT, 3 BLK, 2 TO, 6 +/-

OG scored in various ways. He hit threes when the team needed it. He hit his biggest triple in the fourth quarter to put his team up four. Continued to show his low pot strength, though he got penalized for it in the fourth (he made up for it by getting to the charity stripe on the next play). Defensively, he was solid — he had a highlight one-on-one defensive clinic against Edwards at the end of the first half.

P. Siakam34 MIN, 15 PTS, 7 REB, 6 AST, 1 STL, 5-17 FG, 3-5 3FG, 2-2 FT, 0 BLK, 2 TO, 7 +/-

Efficient three-point shooting night for Pascal. Was comfortable in the catch-and-shoot 3-point shooting role. Hit a triple in clutch time to put the Raps up six, and then hit another pivotal one to make it a seven-point game at the end. Continued to show his blistering speed in transition. Pascal continued to show his playmaking prowess, which started with his defense. Case in point: his solid D in the first quarter led to transition offense, and lobbed a near-impossible lob to Precious for the catch and finish. Would like him to stay aggressive going forwad — he had an opportunity to bully Conley down low, but passed out of it.

J. Poeltl24 MIN, 7 PTS, 11 REB, 1 AST, 1 STL, 3-3 FG, 0-0 3FG, 1-4 FT, 1 BLK, 0 TO, 8 +/-

Was pretty quiet, but great drop D at times to contain Minnesota’s bigs. Great offensive plays from the top of the key. Will be interesting to see how he continues to work with Schroder in the pick-and-roll.

S. Barnes37 MIN, 17 PTS, 8 REB, 5 AST, 2 STL, 6-16 FG, 1-4 3FG, 4-6 FT, 5 BLK, 4 TO, 2 +/-

Got the most PT, and all-around solid showing, especially on defense with five blocks and can create momentum from the defensive end. After what seemed like Gobert’s missed goaltending call, Barnes blocked the shot to keep the momentum in the Raps’ favour. Would love to have seen Scottie shoot that three at the end, rather than hesitating. He needs to be able to shoot those shots without second guessing if he’s going to be our franchise player.

D. Schroder32 MIN, 22 PTS, 3 REB, 7 AST, 0 STL, 8-17 FG, 4-8 3FG, 2-2 FT, 0 BLK, 2 TO, 10 +/-

50% three-point shooter, shooting 4-for-8! But it semed like a lot more. He was great in the transition offense, and the momentum and confidence he’s developed from FIBA seems to have carried over. Because he’s so quick off the drive, his three-point shooting can really create easy buckets for him at the rim. He took two bad shots at the end, and labels like “Fred VanSchroder” were being thrown at the watch party, but that’s the level of confidence we’d like to see in players like Schroder and Barnes.

G. Trent Jr.27 MIN, 5 PTS, 2 REB, 2 AST, 1 STL, 2-8 FG, 1-4 3FG, 0-0 FT, 1 BLK, 0 TO, 3 +/-

Gary was pretty quiet this game. Thought he passed up on some shots he should have taken. But he has Darko’s trust having been put into lineups at key moments of the game.

P. Achiuwa24 MIN, 8 PTS, 8 REB, 0 AST, 0 STL, 4-9 FG, 0-1 3FG, 0-0 FT, 0 BLK, 2 TO, -5 +/-

Two words: Lob finisher. Stats may not jump out, but he finished an impossible lob from Pascal in the first quarter. Was the biggest offensive standout in that frame, finishing two lob catches. He made a three off the catch, got into the game during clutch time, and had a great closeout defensively and aggressively attacked the rim (but missed) when the game mattered most.

J. McDaniels16 MIN, 0 PTS, 2 REB, 2 AST, 1 STL, 0-3 FG, 0-3 3FG, 0-0 FT, 1 BLK, 0 TO, -3 +/-

Didn’t do anything really, and didn’t play many meaningful minutes. But didn’t do anything wrong either.

M. Flynn10 MIN, 3 PTS, 0 REB, 2 AST, 1 STL, 1-3 FG, 1-1 3FG, 0-0 FT, 0 BLK, 2 TO, -14 +/-

Personally, I still believe in Flynn. Great take from the 45 in the second quarter, but got called for the charge. Had a bad turnover and failed to exploit mismatch with Rudy Gobert on him at the top of the arc. But he played through it. Threw a lob to OG in transition, hit a big 3 (his only triple) at the end of the fourth after lots of ball movement. Then had two good drives, but no finish.

G. Dick02 MIN, 0 PTS, 0 REB, 1 AST, 0 STL, 0-1 FG, 0-0 3FG, 0-0 FT, 0 BLK, 0 TO, 1 +/-

Same as Jaden’s report.

Darko Rajakovic

True to his word, Darko only allowed one made corner three. Hard to protect the paint against Minnesota’s twin towers, and Ant was Mamba-esque in the first half, but did a better job containing him in the second half. Minnesota was the more talented team, but Darko’s emphasis on transition offense clearly showed here, especially in the third

Things We Saw

  1. Raps beat Minny 34-12 on fast break points. Raps put on a transition offense clinic in the third quarter, and players all showed how spirited defensive plays can lead to easy transition buckets, whether it’s at the rim or from the three.
  2. We saw how beautiful basketball can be when the ball gets passed around in transition. We should expect to see this type of ball movement out of defensive plays.
  3. That’s just Game 1 out 82, but many have been drunk off the Malachi Flynn-haterade. He may not be FVV-lite lite, but I think we can, and should, expec, aggressive plays from our back-up point guard and his continued progression.