If the result of this series hasn't already been engraved on the Raptors' tombstone, the stonemason is certainly sharpening his chisel. An air of inevitability lingers over this series now. After 96 minutes of Cavs dominance, any hope of a Raptors upset has been washed away like sections of the Don Valley Parkway might be later tonight.
Still, the 33-point deficit through two games doesn't preclude the Raptors from showing off the kind of growth against Cleveland that people were hoping to see this time around. The narrative arc of a series can pivot on a single game, and a strong Game 3 performance would help buy back some of the goodwill the Raptors lost at Quicken Loans Arena this week.
Some obstacles lie in the way of an emotional turnaround of course; Kyle Lowry's uncertain health status being the most daunting. Dwane Casey held steady in his pregame availability, saying that Lowry will be a game-time decision as he tests out his left ankle ahead of tip-off. Look for an official announcement closer to 7:00pm.
Lying beyond Lowry are other trivial matters like not getting demolished from the three-point line, breaking Cleveland's traps with decisiveness and DeMar DeRozan not playing one of the worst games of his career. If all of those factors points in the Raptors favour, perhaps we could be looking at a better-feeling 2-1 series lead for the Cavs and a pseudo-meaningful Game 4 on Sunday.
It could, of course, be a massacre, too.
Regardless of what happens, the comment section is open. Read our man John Gaudes' preview and let's go.
PS. Check out our Facebook Live ahead of Game 3.