The preseason marches on today for the 3-2 Toronto Raptors, as they take on the Cleveland Cavaliers this evening at the ACC. Normally, even under preseason conditions, this would be a scary matchup for the Raptors, but the Cavs are hurting right now.
After receiving an injection in his back for soreness, LeBron James will be sitting for tonight's game (and likely for the rest of the preseason). Likewise, Kyrie Irving is out with a knee injury, Kevin Love is still recovering from his shoulder surgery, and Iman Shumpert is out with a hurt wrist. Human glass figurine Anderson Varejao is back in the lineup, but he's working back from--you guessed it--surgery, along with Timofey Mozgov (who had his knee scoped recently). To top it all off, Canadian Tristan Thompson is still sitting out looking for those max dollars. Would you believe the Cavs are winless in the preseason?
The Raptors meanwhile are coming off a close 89-87 loss to the Timberwolves last Wednesday night (a game which nobody saw, as it was bat flipped out of the collective consciousness by Jose Bautista). Still, there's been a lot of interesting developments for the Raps this preseason. Skinny Kyle Lowry dropped 40 points in a game, the team has given a serious look to Normal Powell and Bruno Caboclo, and new additions Luis Scola, Bismack Biyombo, Cory Joseph and DeMarre Carroll (and even Anthony Bennett!) have looked good.
After getting the night off on Wednesday, we'll see if Coach Dwane Casey goes back to Lowry tonight, or lets rookie Delon Wright get some more time. We'll also see if Terrence Ross is ready to go after hurting his ankle last Monday, and if Patrick Patterson can fully embrace his larger role on the team.
For the Cavs, I guess we'll get a lot of time machine play from Mo Williams and Richard Jefferson? That's peak preseason right there.
Where to Watch: NBA TV Canada