The Toronto Raptors trailed by as much as 17 against the Atlanta Hawks on the road. And yet, somehow, someway they pulled it out. They ended up winning by a score of 96-86. This will be known as the Bebe game, as young Brazilian center Lucas Nogueira played some significant minutes down the stretch for the first time. He finished with 7 rebounds, played some solid defence, and had two sweet alley-oops that absolutely energized the team. He was also a +22 for the game. Wow.
Kyle Lowry absolutely dominated out there once again. He had 22 points in the fourth quarter – a franchise record. He also had the flu. Yeah. He finished with 31-5-5, but just watching this game will tell you the kind of year he’s having. What an absolute monster.
This game was just so satisfying. As a Raptors fan, you have to feel great. Let’s just get to the report card:
It wasn’t pretty, but when it mattered most the Raps executed. That is seriously a sign of a good team. The Raps shot 45% on the night, and just 25% from three. Lowry evidently was the story of this game, though. DeMar DeRozan chipped in and inefficient 17, while Cory Joseph added 10. Patrick Patterson showed some life, hitting two big threes late. Terrence Ross also contributed 8 – it was nice to see the bench guys provide a spark.
You really can’t complain here. The defense is what won the Raptors this game. The Raps put their heads down, focused, and just locked down the Hawks when they needed to. Masterful effort from guys like Joseph, Patterson, Lowry, and even Ross. Good teams are able to get stops when they need them – and the Raptors are looking pretty damn good.
The Raps definitely had a rebounding edge in this one. They outrebounded the Hawks 50-43, with everyone grabbing at least one board. Scola led the way with 9.
Game Ball: Kyle Lowry
I don’t have to justify this. The man is better than we have ever seen him, and he’s absolutely putting the team on his back right now. We just have to hope he doesn’t burn out – because this type of usage would even tire a prime LeBron James.