We're not going to talk about Patrick Patterson here. The Raptors head into 2017 having lost two games in a row, or, if you're a glass half full person, having won four of their last six. It's all relative. Which is why the loss of Patterson will not be discussed. I'm not worried.
The Raptors still have the two finest players in this game against the Lakers -- Kyle Lowry and DeMar DeRozan. Against any other team that is currently 12-24 (after losing 14 of 16 games), that would be enough. Even with the possibility of Pascal Siakam playing 30 minutes, or the Raptors being forced to try a Lucas Nogueira-Jonas Valanciunas front court. I told you, it's cool, it's OK, we'll be fine.
The leading scorer for the Lakers is Lou Williams, a guy the Raptors (and Toronto fans) are very familiar with. After that the Lakers have a gaggle of young players who can do damage, but like all young teams: they're still figuring it out. On top of that, they'll be without Larry Nance Jr. as he recovers from a bone bruise on his left knee. The Lakers also haven't found any minutes for a returning Jose Calderon and Tarik Black -- we'll see if they get some burn in this one.
Anyway, it's January 1st, 2017. We're going to leave the bad stuff of 2016 in 2016, which includes the injury to Patrick Patterson, who won't play in this one. But that's OK. It's fine.
Read my preview here and then settle in for the first Raptors game of the new year.