Well, it was inevitably going to happen. The Toronto Raptors have been handed their first loss of the season after a 5 game winning streak. The loss was at the hands of the Orlando Magic of all teams. No disrespect to the Magic, but it’s funny how things play out after watching the Raps handle teams like the OKC Thunder.
Nevertheless, the much-improved Magic took down the Raps 92-87, largely thanks to their strong 4th quarter where they outscored the Raps 28-18. Down the stretch, the Raptors appeared to be passive – totally different then how they handled the OKC game. It happens, I guess.
35% from the field, 21% from three, 87 total points – not pretty. Nobody aside from Cory Joseph was particularly efficient in this one. DeMar DeRozan provided 23 points while Joseph had 19, and Lowry had 17. It appeared as though the iso-ball was more prominent tonight and it affected the entire offense. You would like to see JV get more than 6 tries. The inside out game just was not working, and with the weak frontcourt the Magic fielded tonight it should have been exploited much further. Nights like this are going to happen – it’s just important to ensure they don’t become a habit.
The defense did its job for the most part. Tobias Harris and Victor Oladipo did their thing, but for the majority of the game the Raps were able to get stops. Conveniently though, the highest scoring quarter for the Magic turned out to be the 4th. The intensity wasn’t high enough.
The Raps have become a dominant rebounding team. Led by Jonas Valanciunas‘ 14, the Raps outrebounded the Magic 44-40, with 15 huge offensive boards that really kept them in the game.
Game Ball: Tobias Harris
Harris put in work this game. He was too big for DeMarre Carroll, and too quick for Luis Scola. He certainly knows how to work being a ‘tweener’.