The Raptors 905 had a busy week with four games, including a three-game road trip. As has been the case for most of the season so far, the team from Mississauga has played well more often than not. As a result, the 905 are currently riding a four-game win streak.
Here’s a summary of the games this week and the ups and downs of some of the 905’s players.
Thursday Dec. 1st — vs. Fort Wayne Mad Ants
Final Score: 109-107 for the 905 as they improve to 4-2
Starter Will Sheehey Goes Off
Will Sheehey have given the 905 incredible bench depth this season, after the 905 acquired his rights during the expansion draft. Sheehey earned his second start of the season and showed coach Jerry Stackhouse that he too could be a starter for the team. In 28 minutes, Sheehey had 23 points, 5 rebounds, 5 steals and 2 assists.
It’s not only Sheehey’s stat line that is impressive. He brings a touch of veteran leadership to an inexperienced D-League team, which continues to prove to be valuable for the 905.
CJ Leslie Deserves to Start
Leslie, like Sheehey, was acquired via expansion draft and in his first season with the 905 has been incredible. Leslie has given coach Stackhouse and the 905 incredible depth off of the bench — Leslie only played in 16 minutes and had 16 points, 7 rebounds and 2 assists. Frankly, Leslie deserves to start, and will presumably get his chance on nights when Bruno Caboclo isn’t with the team.
- Fred VanVleet had another impressive game as he recorded a double-double with 15 points, 10 assists and 4 rebounds.
- Axel Toupane was out of this game with an ankle injury as well as the usually inactive Goodluck Okonoboh.
Friday Dec. 2nd — vs. Canton Charge
Final Score: 104-72 for the 905 as they improve to 5-2
Axel Toupane Returns from Injury and Dominates
Toupane is back in his super sixth man role with the 905. Off the bench, Toupane still played in 30 minutes scoring a game high 32 points, with 4 rebounds and a perfect 14-14 from the free throw line.
Toupane has continued to play very well in the D-League and should get a 10-day contract come January by a NBA team.
CJ Leslie Gets His Chance to Start
After what has been a long time coming, Leslie got the start against the Charge and showed up big. Leslie recorded a double-double (and nearly a triple-double) in 33 minutes of action with 13 points, 10 rebounds and 7 assists. Leslie has been very consistent for the 905 regardless of his role with the team.
- 905 won big in this one with no assignees as both Fred VanVleet and Bruno Caboclo were up with the Raptors.
- Walter ‘Edy’ Tavares started at centre and managed to foul out.
- Goodluck Okonoboh continues to be the main inactive; EJ Singler was also out due to an ankle injury.
Sunday Dec. 4th — vs. Maine Red Claws
Final Score: 102-89 for the 905 as they improve to 6-2
CJ Leslie Almost Records a Triple-Double (Again)
In back-to-back games, both starts, CJ Leslie was once again only three assists shy of a triple double. Leslie played in 33 minutes with 11 points, 16 rebounds (a game high), and 7 assists. Leslie is currently looking like one of the 905’s best players and someone who should gain some interest (and a 10-day contract) from an NBA team come January.
Walter ‘Edy’ Tavares Comes Up Big
After fouling out in the previous gamem Tavares bounced back in a huge way. Starting once again at centre, Tavares recorded a double-double with 20 points, 10 rebounds and two assists in 23 minutes of action. If he keeps this kind of play up, Tavares could be the third most likely player on the 905 who could receive a 10 day contract from an NBA team.
- Brady Heslip has been looking more comfortable in the starting PG role with no VanVleet.
- Jarrod Uthoff slowly looking like a solid contributor to this roster as he racks up 12 points, 4 rebounds, 3 steals and a block in 21 minutes off of the bench.
- No surprise as this will most likely be their role for the foreseeable future barring injury: Goodluck Okonoboh and Negus Webster-Chan were the two inactives.
Wednesday Dec. 7th — vs Greensboro Swarm
Final Score: 106-104 for the 905 as they improve to 7-2
Brady Heslip Looks Good in Starting Role
With no VanVleet, Heslip has been starting at point guard and coming up big for the 905. Heslip played in 36 minutes with a (tied for) game-high 23 points, to go with 7 assists, 2 steals and 2 rebounds. Heslip controlled the offense and never looked shaky when the Swarm started to come back. His response to the pressure? Heslip countered with 18 points in the first seven minutes of the third quarter and provided a much needed big game to help the 905 win.
Axel Toupane Continues to be Consistent
Toupane arguably has been the best 905 player not on assignment (VanVleet). Toupane, off the bench, only played in 25 minutes but put up 23 points along with 4 rebounds and 2 assists. That said, Toupane did struggle to control the ball, turning it over five times, which is not something he usually does.
- Sheehey and Leslie continue to be consistent for the 905 as they both had point totals in the double-digits.
- Goodluck Okonoboh and Webster-Chan continue to be the 905’s inactive players.