For the first time since Christmas the Toronto Raptors are on a losing streak. With a combination of playing down and not meeting the play of competition, the Raptors are going through a bit of a rough stretch right now.
Week Record (0-3)
Overall Record (42-18)
Tuesday, February 25th – Milwaukee Bucks vs. Toronto Raptors – L (108-97)
It started off so well for the Raptors. Up 12 at the end of the second quarter, the lead slipped away as the Bucks took control of the game. Although the Raptors made a run in the fourth quarter, a missed Fred VanVleet three led to a Giannis Antetokounmpo three, giving them a 10-point lead with two and a half minutes left. Even though he didn’t score, he still had 19 points, 19 rebounds, and eight assists. Khris Middleton led the game in scoring with 22 points for the Bucks. Pascal also had 22 points, also going five for nine from three.
Friday, February 28th – Charlotte Hornets vs. Toronto Raptors – L (99-96)
After a back and forth fourth quarter, late-game execution hurt the Raptors. Rondae Hollis-Jefferson fouled Terry Rozier with two seconds left, giving him free throws and the Hornets the lead. All of the Hornets starters scored in double digits. The Raptors were even more short-handed, with Fred VanVleet and Serge Ibaka both out, leaving the team without a center. They did get Norman Powell back, who picked up where he left off with 22 points. The Raptors had the least number of turnovers this season too with five.
Sunday, March 1st – Toronto Raptors @ Denver Nuggets – L (113-118)
In their first game on a five-game road trip the Raptors could not stop Nikola Jokic. Jokic feasted with 23 points, 18 rebounds, and 11 assists. Serge Ibaka missed his second game, which really hurt the Raptors, and had to use multiple guys on Jokic. Eight players for the Nuggets scored in double digits. They shot 56 per cent from the field and 50 per cent from three, with Kitchener native Jamal Murray hitting six. Pascal had a rough night, shooting six for 21 for 16 points.
Player of the Week – Pascal Siakam? (begrudgingly)
This is probably his biggest slump so far efficiency wise, but he’s still putting up numbers.
Key Contributor & Standout Performance – OG Anunoby
OG’s presence has been key, but his scoring has really stepped up as well.
Best Opposing Player – Nikola Jokic
Even with the Raptors having no one available to play center, Jokic still would have played well.
- Pat McCaw returned after missing a couple games with the flu.
- Serge and Fred both got hurt in the game against Milwaukee.
- Norman Powell returned from his injury against the Hornets.
- Hornets guard Malik Monk was suspended indefinitely for violating anti-drug program
- After a report saying the Jazz would bench point guard Mike Conley, they reversed course and benched veteran forward Joe Ingles
- Philadelphia 76ers enter Joel Embiid is out with a left shoulder sprain and will be re-evaluated in one week
- Minnesota bought out shooting guard Allen Crabbe
- Minnesota was also fined $25,000 for violating the league’s player resting policy when D’Angelo Russell sat out a game in February
- Denver bought out guard/forward Jordan McCrae
- Lakers bought out shooting guard Troy Daniels. They then worked out Dion Waiters and will work out J.R. Smith
- Kings bought out Anthony Tolliver and signed with the Memphis Grizzlies, who bought out Jordan Bell
- In a memo to teams in the league, the NBA suggest players fist-bump each other instead of high-fiving, and avoid taking pens, balls, and jerseys to autograph.
- Tuesday, March 3rd – Toronto Raptors @ Phoenix Suns
- Thursday, March 5th – Toronto Raptors @ Golden State Warriors
- Sunday, March 8th – Toronto Raptors @ Sacramento Kings