Raptors Cage

Post Game Report Card: Toronto Raptors lose to Harden and the Rockets

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The Toronto Raptors lost to the Houston Rockets 112-109, behind James Harden‘s triple-double.

DeMar DeRozan, who led the Raptors with 18 points, was ejected from the game at the 2:55 mark of the fourth quarter after arguing with a referee. Kyle Lowry followed, getting ejected with 25.5 seconds left in the game.

The Rockets now have won both their season matches against the Raptors, while also pushing them two and a half games behind the Cavaliers Cavaliers at the top of the Eastern Conference.

Offence: A-

The Raptors had a solid team effort on the offensive end of the floor, with seven of their players scoring in double-digits. But their poor shooting of 41.4 per cent from the field, didn’t do them any favours.

It also took a bit of time for the Raptors offence to start rolling, taking their first lead at the 3:36 mark of the second quarter. It was part of a 25-10 run the Raptors were able to go on to end the first half up 58-54.

In the fourth quarter, the Raptors didn’t have enough fire power from their All-Star backcourt, with Lowry and DeRzoan combining for only 12 points. The Raptors were able to finish the game with only a one-basket differential, but the Rockets held the momentum and lead for the entire final frame.

Defence: C

The Raptors weren’t able to stop the Houston Rockets from scoring, allowing them to shoot 51.8 per cent from the field and 54.5 per cent from 3-point distance.

Just like the Raptors, they were able to score 46 points in the paint. But the Rockets also did a lot of their damage on fast break opportunities, scoring 15 points. thanks to players like Corey Brewer who finished the game with 10 points and 2 blocks. His most impressive basket came at the 9:18 mark of the fourth quarter, helping the Rockets get their biggest lead of 12 points.

Harden was the engine behind the Rockets offence, finishing the game with 13 assists. Michael Beasley had another solid outing ever since coming back from as the MVP in China, scoring 21 points on 9-12 shooting.

Rebounding: B

The Raptors lost 48-45 in the rebounding category, despite a monster performance from Jonas Valanciunas who was able to grab 18 boards to go with his 16 points.

Besides Valanciunas, Luis Scola was the next highest rebounder with 5 boards for the Raptors. The Rockets were led by Harden’s 11 rebounds, and were helped by Clint Capela’s 10 off the bench.

The offensive glass was where the Raptors were able to punish the Rockets, winning 15-13 , helping them score 24 second chance opportunities compared to Houston’s 9.

Game Ball: James Harden

James Harden was a stud for the Rockets, leading them with 32 points on 50 per cent shooting, 13 assists, and 11 rebounds.

His first triple-double since the All-Star break helped the Rockets hold the momentum for the majority of the game. He didn’t have the biggest defensive performance like he did against the Utah Jazz on Wednesday, but he did grab a steal and a block to go along with his offensive masterpiece.

The win for the Rockets stops their 3-game losing streak, while helping them remain the 8th seed in the Western Conference.


All stats for this article are from NBA.com

You can follow Bryan Meler on Twitter @BryanMelo97






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