Quick Reaction: Raptors 94, Celtics 117

Toronto ends their four-game road trip at 2-2 after losing to Boston.

Box Score
O. Anunoby28 MIN, 8 PTS, 3 REB, 2 AST, 1 STL, 3-13 FG, 2-8 3FG, 0-0 FT, 0 BLK, 0 TO, -26 +/-

OG Anunoby came into the night with a career average of 8.5 points against the Celtics. In his 19 games against Boston, he had yet to score more than 14 and tonight wasn’t the night that was going to change as he went 1-6 from the field in the first half. It wasn’t for a lack of effort as he took shots within the flow of the offence, but they simply weren’t dropping.

P. Siakam28 MIN, 17 PTS, 7 REB, 3 AST, 3 STL, 6-17 FG, 0-4 3FG, 5-6 FT, 0 BLK, 3 TO, -9 +/-

Not nearly as hot of a start as the last game, but it was evident Siakam found a bit of a comfort zone in the offence. Like the win in Dallas, the forward was quickly setting up in the post and when he wasn’t, he was running into space trying to get easy looks. The first Raptor to hit double-digit points as he notched 10 points in the first quarter. With the blowout that ensued the rest of the way, it was difficult to read into much of his game after halftime. Worth noting that his relatively strong start from beyond the arch has cooled down over these last two games, as he’s 0-9 from three during that span.

J. Poeltl21 MIN, 12 PTS, 3 REB, 2 AST, 0 STL, 6-10 FG, 0-0 3FG, 0-0 FT, 0 BLK, 1 TO, -9 +/-

It was a tale of two sides for Jakob Poeltl who had his strongest start to the season. The word strong was used very specifically because he was moving the seven-foot-three Kristaps Porzingis with relative ease early on. He showed very little respect for the Latvian’s presence inside the paint, made clear by his 12 first-half points (he didn’t score in the second half). Unfortunately for the Austrian, he gave much of that back on the other end. Poeltl got picked on in the screen game by Boston quite a bit and was often left on an island as Porzingis or his screening partner got their shots off.

S. Barnes29 MIN, 10 PTS, 5 REB, 4 AST, 1 STL, 4-15 FG, 2-9 3FG, 0-0 FT, 1 BLK, 1 TO, -28 +/-

It was another rough shooting night for Scottie Barnes and like their last game, it wasn’t for a lack of attempts. He was getting the ball up, but the shot wasn’t dropping. Given his hot knocking it down, things were bound to regress back to the norm at some point, so not a total surprise. The real oddity was his lack of willingness to attack the basket. Nine of his 15 shot attempts came from beyond the arch. That could be due to the defensive pressure he felt, but with the likes of Siakam and Poeltl finding the success they did while attacking the paint, one would expect Barnes to have wanted in on some of that action.

D. Schroder25 MIN, 14 PTS, 1 REB, 4 AST, 1 STL, 3-7 FG, 1-3 3FG, 7-7 FT, 0 BLK, 1 TO, -2 +/-

A quiet but efficient game from Dennis. Had to sit early with two fouls in the first but he made the most of his time out there despite his shot not falling all that well. His willingness to attack and get easy points at the line was one of the few positives on the night.

O. Porter Jr.14 MIN, 3 PTS, 3 REB, 0 AST, 1 STL, 1-2 FG, 1-2 3FG, 0-0 FT, 0 BLK, 0 TO, -9 +/-

First player off the bench to sub in, but unlike other nights this season, his impact wasn’t felt. He didn’t have much to work with given the lackluster play all around to be fair.

M. Flynn23 MIN, 12 PTS, 1 REB, 1 AST, 0 STL, 5-7 FG, 2-4 3FG, 0-1 FT, 0 BLK, 1 TO, -21 +/-

Darko Rajaković, Schröder, and basically the rest of the squad have been visible and vocal about their belief in Malachi Flynn. Their unwavering support has shown dividends throughout this road trip as the fourth-year guard had another positive showing tonight. For probably the first time this season, it feels okay to ignore his plus/minus. He hit a big three to stop a 16-0 run in the first half and made a pretty awesome lob pass to Poeltl not long after. Yes, he finished as a pretty big minus but that had more to do with the bench being pretty mediocre as a whole than him individually.

P. Achiuwa18 MIN, 2 PTS, 5 REB, 5 AST, 0 STL, 1-5 FG, 0-2 3FG, 0-0 FT, 0 BLK, 0 TO, -12 +/-

Returning from injury, his first game back since the team’s loss to Philadelphia at home on October 28, Precious Achiuwa looked quite lost for much of his time on the floor. He was rushing most of his decisions when the ball was in his hands and didn’t look very engaged when moving without the rock. Given the forward’s extended absence, hopefully, most of that can be attributed to rust, but only time will tell.

C. Boucher22 MIN, 6 PTS, 5 REB, 1 AST, 0 STL, 2-4 FG, 2-3 3FG, 0-0 FT, 0 BLK, 0 TO, -9 +/-

Spun around by Sam Hauser after biting on a fake and then getting a three drilled right over him as part of a 16-0 run…can’t really say much more than that. Similar to Achiuwa, there wasn’t much positive to take from his game, but that goes for most of the team tonight. The sparkplug energy you hope to get from Boucher just wasn’t there.

G. Dick15 MIN, 4 PTS, 1 REB, 1 AST, 0 STL, 1-4 FG, 0-2 3FG, 2-2 FT, 0 BLK, 1 TO, -4 +/-

After being yanked early in their game against Dallas, it was positive to see Gradey Dick show no signs of his confidence being hurt. Checked into this one mid-way through the second and his first make came on an impressive drive right through Jayson Tatum’s contesting arms. He continues to struggle with his shooting efficiency, but at least you know when he comes in he won’t shy away.

J. McDaniels09 MIN, 0 PTS, 1 REB, 0 AST, 0 STL, 0-2 FG, 0-0 3FG, 0-0 FT, 0 BLK, 0 TO, 2 +/-

Garbage time.

G. Temple04 MIN, 2 PTS, 1 REB, 0 AST, 1 STL, 1-2 FG, 0-0 3FG, 0-0 FT, 0 BLK, 0 TO, 6 +/-

Garbage time.

T. Young04 MIN, 4 PTS, 1 REB, 2 AST, 0 STL, 2-3 FG, 0-0 3FG, 0-0 FT, 0 BLK, 0 TO, 6 +/-

Garbage time.

Darko Rajakovic

Didn’t really see much of an answer from Rajaković or the team when Boston went on their first big run of the game. It really felt like a “there’s levels to this,” kind of game where the Raptors couldn’t keep up with the talent and firepower of the Celtics. For Toronto’s sake, let’s hope it was an end-of-road trip lull, but to look so lethargic against a Boston team on the second leg of a back-to-back was disappointing, to say the least.

Things We Saw

  1. “Tonight, they don’t have their mojo…they’re a step slow,” is what Jack Armstrong said on the broadcast mid-way through the third when the team was down big, and honestly, I couldn’t sum it up better.
  2. Not sure what was worse, the Raptors losing the game or losing so bad that former Raptors Oshae Brissett, Dalano Banton, and Svi Mykhailuk got to check in and play.
  3. Counter to the feeling of getting “punked,” from the above point, it did feel good to see coach Rajaković take offence to Joe Mazzulla initiating a coaches challenge late in the fourth while his team was up by 27 points. He’s made it clear he’s willing to stand up for his players and his team and you saw it in that moment.