The Raptors 905 have started their 2018-19 campaign, and did so with a bang. Though the home and season opener on Saturday was the only game from the last seven days, it provided plenty of storylines to build off.
Let’s review it before our Dial 905 gets cluttered with multiple games — as soon as next week!
Saturday, Nov. 3 vs. Delaware Blue Coats
Final: Raptors 905, 126 — Blue Coats, 125
Hoo boy! There was no shortage of shots taken in this one, as both teams were determined to run up and down the court. As is typical for any season opener, this resulted in some ragged play — and a whole heck of a lot of scoring. The 905 jacked up 97 shots in this one, while Delaware shot 96. That’s a lot.
With only Malcolm Miller sitting out due to injury and 2,583 fans in attendance at Paramount Fine Foods Centre, this made for a fun outing.
Boucher leads the way
The standout for the 905 was Montreal native Chris Boucher, who stuffed the stat line for 33 points, 14 rebounds, four assists, three steals, and three blocks.
It may surprise some to see that Boucher started the game at centre, but the 905 seem to be on some sort of pioneer quest for the future of basketball — the frontcourt of Boucher, Kyle Collinsworth, and Deng Adel are a collection of Masai Ujiri archetypes. Long, tall, and switchy, it’s going to be a lot of fun to see these three together, especially if game one is any indication.
Individually, Boucher was aggressive in his minutes on the floor — jumping passing lanes, playing intense defence — but picked up five fouls in the process. If anything, opening night showed that Boucher has no problem laying it out, even if it’s in a G League game.
Loyd’s exclamation point
The 905’s other two-way contract player had a nice night as well, scoring 24 points, grabbing seven rebounds, and adding three steals getting the start at shooting guard. Loyd hit the game-winning free throws after driving to the bucket and drawing contact off a Delaware turnover, hitting both with 7.3 seconds left.
Most people, though, are going to remember this.
- Deng Adel showed a lot of promise in the season opener, as his three-pointer with 1:24 left tied the game and set up a frantic finish. Adel finished with 17 points, making 7-of-11 shots (a high watermark considering the team shot 41%), and was a +6.
- Delaware guard Demetrius Jackson actually led all scorers in this game with 34 points, as the 76ers two-way player made 4-of-8 from three to audition for a big league club that needs some shooters.
- Leading off the bench for the 905 was Duane Notice, who scored 14 points in 29 minutes, shooting 5-for-9. The Ontario native was also a +10 and looked solid in front of a true home crowd.