This piece is the first instalment of a new segment we're starting here at Raptors HQ. Every one to two weeks (depending on how many games are played), we'll provide an update on the Raptors placing in the Eastern Conference, and provide a quick preview of what to expect from the games to come.
Over the past week, the Raptors have gone 2-3, with wins coming against Philadelphia and Milwaukee, and losses coming against Atlanta, New Orleans, and Memphis. If there's any silver lining, it's that while the offence is sputtering, the Raptors have held three straight opponents to under 100 points for what feels like the first time in ages. So after all that, here's where we stand:
|3||Toronto||27||15||.643||7 ½||16-7||11-8||7-0||18-8||105.9||100.9||+5.0||Lost 1||3-7|
|7||Miami||18||24||.429||16 ½||7-13||11-11||3-7||11-13||92.9||96.7||-3.7||Lost 2||4-6|
|8||Brooklyn||18||24||.429||16 ½||8-14||10-10||5-4||12-16||95.7||97.9||-2.1||Won 1||2-8|
Remember that the Raptors are virtually a lock for a top-4 seed because of how weak the Atlantic is (or maybe it's still wide open, right Amar'e?). While Atlanta and Washington continue to perform at a high level, Chicago has joined Toronto in hitting a bit of a rough patch. With Cleveland streaking right behind them, it behooves the Raptors to find some form so as to avoid a 4-5 matchup against the Cavs.
So what's coming up this week? @Philadelphia, vs Detroit, @Indiana, vs Sacramento. All four teams are worse than the Raptors, but I don't know what to make of Toronto at the moment. 4-0 would be nice, but I wouldn't be surprised by 3-1 or 2-2.
Thoughts? Feedback is welcome, as always!