The Toronto Raptors picked up an impressive road win against the Portland Trail Blazers to improve their record to 8-3. How did everyone grade in the game?
To say that the Toronto Raptors West Coast road trip had been something of a success, so far, would be disingenuous. It would also be a little hard to really evaluate since the Raptors are currently missing Kyle Lowry, Serge Ibaka, and OG Anunoby – three key components to the team’s winning formula.
However, following the Raptors 114-106 victory over the Portland Trail Blazers, Nick Nurse’s men now improve their record to 3-1 on the trip out west and 8-3 overall for the season. That, if we’re being honest, is impressive given the circumstances.
The Trail Blazers start to the season has been, rightly, criticised. Coming into Wednesday night, they were 4-7 and struggling to get going, even with Damian Lillard dropping 60 points against the Brooklyn Nets – a game the Blazers still went on to lose.
Lillard, however, would be nowhere near as impactful against the Raptors. Held to just nine points on 2-of-12 shooting from the field, Lillard was trapped and double-teamed by Fred VanVleet and the Raptors aggressive defense all night.
VanVleet would go one better than just a stout defensive performance, he would knock down 30 points on 10-of-16 shooting from the field, adding four rebounds, seven assists, two steals, and even a block!
It wouldn’t be the only 30-point outing for a Raptor on the night. Pascal Siakam, for the fifth time in 12 games, had yet another 30-plus point night, hitting 15-of-28 from the field for 36 points. It started slow for Siakam, but a strong finish – which saw him hit nine of his last ten shots – was enough to seal the deal for the Raptors.
It was their fourth game in six nights, but the Toronto Raptors sans Lowry, Ibaka, and Anunoby overcame last years Western Confernce Finalists in a relatively comfortable fashion. How did everyone grade, though?