What looked to be a very promising result after a tremendous start for the Toronto Raptors in this game, led to an ever so heart-breaking one, as they fell 101-108 to the Philadelphia Sixers. It was yet another overtime thriller for the Raptors, in which left them with a sour taste in their mouths. To have the type of start they had, and to end up with that kind of result, is not only sickening, but dreadful as well. This was the most important stretch of games for the Raptors, and have failed to come away with a positive result in any of them. Unfortunately, I think we now have a clear idea on the direction of this team heading forward throughout the season.
The offense for the Raptors themselves happened to be a tale of two halves. They started off great (scoring 60 points in the first half), and came out completely flat in the final three quarters of the second half (including OT), scoring a measly 41 points. Despite having five players scoring in double-digits, the offense failed to come together when it truly mattered the most.
As well as the offense, the defensive side of the ball for the Raptors happened to be a tale of two halves. They held Philly to just 43 points at halftime, but gave up 65 the rest of the way. They allowed the Sixers to shoot over 50% from the field, and allowed their most prominent scorer in Jrue Holiday, to take the reins of this ball game.
It wasn’t much of an advantage for the Raptors, but they most certainly had one on the glass, out-rebounding Philly by three (42-39). Amir Johnson and Ed Davis were solid as expected hauling down rebounds, and the bench was too. They combined for 20 of the Raptors 42 rebounds, and brought in some much needed energy on the glass.
Game Ball: Like Deighton Goode, I myself am not a great believer in handing out the game ball to a losing team, especially with the effort shown throughout the second half. So tonight, my game ball goes to Jrue Holiday. While managing to contain Holiday during the first few meetings between the two teams, Jrue tore up the Raptors, putting up an impressive stat-line of 33 points, 14 assists, and 5 rebounds. He was a tough match-up for both Kyle Lowry, and Jose Calderon, and was a huge reason for the Sixers’ comeback.
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