After a 2 day break, the Toronto Raptors set foot on the hardwood tonight as they hope to extend their franchise record of consecutive home games won to 11 and get a win over the Utah Jazz.
The Raps are hungry tonight, especially after the beat down they suffered from the Detroit Pistons this past Sunday night. A well-rested Kyle Lowry should help the boys from the Six pull off the W tonight. Let’s take a look at how the Raptors can cage up the Jazz.
Attack the Glass
Utah currently ranks as the 11th worst team when it comes to rebounding. While the Raps are ranked only 3 spots better, this is where Toronto can take advantage. Rebounds are crucial in determining the outcome of a game.
Utah doesn’t do a very good job at taking care of the ball. The Jazz are tenth worst when it comes to choking up the rock. Toronto must be disruptive on the defensive end and create chaos for the Jazz by getting in those passing lanes and anticipating every pass.
Toronto is great at drawing fouls while the Jazz are great (in our case) at fouling. DeMar DeRozan, in particular, is the fourth best player in the league at getting to the charity stripe. It’s in Toronto’s best interests to get to the foul line as much as possible.
X-Factor: Jonas Valanciunas
It’s without a question that Lowry and DeRozan are going to have their hands full with Gordan Hayward and Rodney Hood. However, Jonas Valanciunas is going to have to take his game to a completely different level tonight as he wrestles down low with the likes of Rudy Gobert and Derrick Favors.