Do the Toronto Raptors have anything left to play for? In a standings sense, it appears not. Three games back of Milwaukee with just 11 games to go, it looks like Toronto is locked into the second seed in the East.
In a basketball sense, though, it’d be nice to see the Raptors string some wins together. Lately everything has come in fits and starts — you get thorough, energetic wins over the Knicks, or you get a punch-inducing snoozer against the Cavs.
Tonight, the Raptors start a home-and-home against the Oklahoma City Thunder on the road. If you’re someone who wants more from your Toronto basketball team, then it’s a critical matchup for both teams. The Raptors would love to carry a couple games against a quality team; Oklahoma City has been stout defensively all year, and have a Raptor-killer in Paul George and the always fiery Russell Westbrook.
From OKC’s perspective, they’re right in the thick of a playoff seeding race, as four teams try to avoid the eighth seed and a first round matchup with the Golden State Warriors. Right now, the Thunder are in sixth, tied with San Antonio and half a game up on Utah and the Clippers, with the top eight seeds all but assured. All they need to decide is the order.
Their schedule gets easier after this pair of games against the Raptors, too. There’s no doubt the Thunder will be up for this one, with Memphis, Indiana, Dallas, and the Lakers making up four of their next five games.
So, let’s get it going. Only injury updates are that Kyle Lowry will miss another game due to an ankle sprain, while Nerlens Noel will be a game time decision for the Thunder — with optimism that he will play.
Here are the details!
Where to Watch
Sportsnet One, 9:30 PM ET
Toronto - Fred VanVleet, Danny Green, Kawhi Leonard, Pascal Siakam, Marc Gasol
Oklahoma City - Russell Westbrook, Terrance Ferguson, Paul George, Jerami Grant, Steven Adams
Toronto - Kyle Lowry (out - ankle)
Oklahoma City - Nerlens Noel (game time decision - quad), Andre Roberson (out - knee)