Orlando Magic, Toronto Raptors

Raptors ice another playoff demon, finishing the Magic in Game 5

The Raptors took no chances with fate sneaking up on them, emphatically finishing off the Magic in Game 5.

Game 1 in this series brought the Raptors a home loss, a disappointing scoreless performance from Kyle Lowry, and a host of bad memories from their last few playoff washouts. From the tip of Game 2, they’ve done everything they possibly could to erase those memories. Game 5, a series-clinching 19-point win over the Magic was just them entering another piece of evidence into the official record that these are not those Raptors anymore.

Toronto Raptors


Orlando Magic



Playoff Kyle Lowry is doing work. His scoreless Game 1 performance may have been a painful reminder of playoff failures past, but Lowry did have 7 rebounds, 8 assists and 2 steals in that game. He was also in single-digits in Game 4 but his body of work in this series and his performance in the keys Games (2 and 5) should be a blanket of warm optimism for Raptors fans. He was 5-of-6 from the field in the first quarter, including a pair of 3-pointers, putting up 12 points and helping Toronto build a lead they would never relinquish. He finished the series averaging 11.4 points, 4.8 rebounds, 8.6 assists and 2.0 steals, shooting 43.8 percent from the floor and 32 percent on 3-pointers. Altogether, the Raptors were +106 in the 177 minutes he was on the floor during the series. Toronto is here to make some noise and Lowry is ready for all of it.

The Magic did some good things. It’s disappointing to go from winning Game 1 on the road to losing in five, but getting here and taking that first game were important steps for a franchise that’s still trying to build something meaningful. This roster will likely look significantly different next year — Nikola Vucevic, Terrence Ross, Michael Carter-Williams and Khem Birch are all free agents. However, Jonathan Isaac blossomed, Aaron Gordon got his first taste of the postseason and, hopefully, a lesson on where and how he’ll have to raise his game to maximize his talent, and they found key contributors like Wes Iwundu and Birch (who can hopefully be re-signed). Next year, they’ll also get Mo Bamba and Markelle Fultz back on the court and have a chance to use this experience as a launching pad to bigger and better things.

Next: Pascal Siakam, deconstructed

The Raptors are ready. Game 5 between the 76ers and Nets is still being played as of this writing but it certainly looks like we’re headed for a matchup between Philadelphia and Toronto. The Raptors won three of their four games against Philadelphia during the regular season and, with the addition of Marc Gasol, they really have all the pieces they should need to try and counter Philly’s weapons at both ends. It also can not be understated the degree to which Toronto is rolling right now. Even if you include their Game 1 loss and before counting this 19-point Game 5 win where the held Orlando to 96 points, they beat the Magic by an average of 14.6 points per 100 possessions, allowing just 96.0 points. Whatever comes next, Toronto is prepared.

Products You May Like

Articles You May Like

Police told Cavs’ Altman he nearly caused wreck
Minnesota Timberwolves pay homage to 1990s with throwback jerseys
Sources: Raptors current front-runners for Lillard
Middleton not concerned about Giannis’ future
NBA offseason survey: MVP picks, summer winners and Wemby’s ceiling

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *