Well, that was embarassing. The Toronto Raptors came into game 5 with a ton of momentum after beating the Cleveland Cavaliers in back to back games, only to come out completely flat on their way to being massacred in tonight’s game. It’s mind-blowing how the Raptors can play so badly after playing so well at home. An abysmal effort on both ends of the floor, the Raptors fell to the Cavs 116-78. This was not the effort we were looking for and now trail 3-2 in the best of 7 series looking at a massive wall to climb. The Raptors are much better than they showed tonight but didn’t show up and now need to win back to back games to make it to the finals. Let’s get to tonight’s report card. Spoiler: It won’t be pretty.
The offense struggled from the get-go as they were taking forced and bad shots and getting minimal movement throughout the whole game. It felt as if the Raptors tried to match the Cavs pace after the initial run by Cleveland, and it didn’t work out whatsoever. The Raptors only scored 78 points and DeMar DeRozan and Kyle Lowry combined for just 27 points. They both had over 30 points each in game 4. If I could dig for a plus side tonight it is that Jonas Valanciunas did look healthy in his limited minutes, scoring 9 points.
Again, embarrassing. The Cavs were getting basically anything they wanted and the Raptors allowed the slumping Kevin Love to go off on them tonight and get basically any shot he wanted. Love, LeBron James, and Kyrie Irving scored a combined 71 points. Toronto only scored 78 as a group.The defense was just non existent tonight leading to 116 Cavalier points. Really, really disappointing effort on both ends by a team that was really rolling at the ACC.
Oh, what a surprise. Another F. The Raptors were also out worked, and out rebounded 48-27. Excuse me? Bismack Biyombo had 26 rebounds in game 3 alone. The Raptors were actually led by Jason Thompson with 5 rebounds in garbage time, to put things in perspective. These may seem like harsh grades on the Raptors, but this was a truly embarrassing performance in a team where they needed a big one most.
Game Ball: Kevin Love
Of course this also could go to Irving or LeBron, but this was a game that Love needed. Lots of people were saying how bad he has been and that they should even start Frye over him and how he’s a better fit. Well he shut them up tonight. Love was hot from the beginning and finished with 25 points in just 24 minutes of action. Love was a key catalyst in the Cavs putting the beat down on the Raptors tonight.