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Raptors-Spurs: Toronto Looks to Take Down Reigning Champs

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With a healthy team, the Spurs roll into Toronto as they look to rise the standings of the Western Conference. The Raptors just demolished the Los Angeles Clippers, can they do the same to San Antonio?

Soobum Im-USA TODAY Sports

Where to Watch: TSN 1, 4 and 5

After a wildly inconsistent and infuriating week in which the boys from the 6 lost to the Milwaukee Bucks and the Brooklyn Nets before annihilating the Los Angeles Clippers on Friday, the Raptors welcome the San Antonio Spurs, the team seen as the pinnacle of consistency over the past decade. A win today will help the Raptors strengthen their lead in the standings over the Wizards before their head to head on Wednesday.

Masked behind the historical runs by the Atlanta Hawks and the Golden State Warriors is the fact that San Antonio has slowly been creeping back into the picture. Despite a slow start to the season due to injury, the Spurs have their full roster healthy and have won 8 of their last 10. The Spurs are led by the timeless Tim Duncan, who's anchoring of the defense along with 14.6 points and 10 rebounds a game helped earn him his 15th All Star selection.

San Antonio may even have some extra motivation tonight, as the win in the ACC would be number 1000 for Gregg Popovich:

For Toronto fans, the return of James Johnson was a welcome sight, and after his perfect 7/7 performance leading to 16 points and 5 rebounds against the Clippers, one has to think that Coach Dwane Casey will have no choice but to give him meaningful minutes. In addition to Johnson's return, the Raptors need consistency from Kyle Lowry and DeMar Derozan. After two of his worst performances of the season against the Bucks and the Nets, Lowry regained his form against the Clippers; thats the Lowry that this team needs. For DeRozan it'ss about finding a way to be more efficient with his scoring. He is shooting just under 35% for the field in his last three, and that just is likely not going to cut it against the Spurs.

Anyway, we should be in for some good basketball tonight. I for one, am curious to see if the Raptors' trademark intensity can match the San Antonio's trademark precision.

Thoughts? Comments? Lets get into it!