The Toronto Raptors end their six-game home stand tonight as they take on the Philadelphia Sixers, looking to extend their winning streak to four games. Toronto is coming off of a win on Friday night over the Milwaukee Bucks. DeMar DeRozan poured in 27 points to lead the Raptors to their third straight win.
Tonight, the Raptors take on the Sixers for their second meeting of four this season. Their last meeting, the Raptors were victorious in a 119-103 win, where Kyle Lowry put on a show in his home town, dropping 23 points and 8 assists.
Cage’s keys to the game:
Play Your Opponent
Head coach Dwane Casey will remind his guys that they need to be as focus tonight as they have been in the past three games. Just because the Sixers are 1-23 doesn’t mean the Raptors should cool it down. The Denver Nuggets showed the Raptors a couple of games ago what happens when they play teams by their record and not their opponent. “We’ve got to respect them and come back with the same mentality,” Bismack Biyombo said.
Start Out Strong
Toronto must start the game out with tons of energy and activeness on the defensive end so they can run away with this one early. This is the game where you hope the Raptors maintain a huge lead so players like Lowry who is playing nearly 36 minutes a game could get some rest with tonight being the first game of back-to-back as the Raptors are back on the road on Monday to take on Paul George and the Indiana Pacers. The Sixers are currently on a 18-game road losing streak which is something to smile about if you’re a Raptors fan.
The last time the Sixers met with the Raptors they committed their fewest turnovers on the season (12) while Jahlil Okafor dropped 26 points. The Raptors need force multiple turnovers and get out on transition to put the Sixers to bed early. Philadelphia is currently on a 18-game road losing streak which is something to smile about if you’re a Raptors fan.
X-Factor: Luis Scola
Last time these two teams met, Luis Scola was huge for the Raptors adding 21 points on 10-15 shooting. The Raptors will need that type of effort from him tonight as they look to make it four straight wins, hoping to improve to 16-9 on the season.