Marc Gasol is back! The big Spaniard will make his return to the Raptors’ rotation in a limited capacity tonight, playing off the bench with a minutes restriction. With Serge Ibaka returning in the Raptors’ previous contest against against the Warriors, and Fred VanVleet seemingly slated to return sometime this coming week, it looks like the Raptors might just be finally on their way back to health. Of course, we’ve said that many times before.
Marc Gasol returns off the bench with an undisclosed minutes cap. Fred VanVleet does not.— Blake Murphy (@BlakeMurphyODC) March 8, 2020
And, of course, approaching good health doesn’t guarantee a win by any means. The Raptors are in the midst of a west coast road swing, and their opponent tonight, the Kings, have won 4 of their last 5. The Kings have benefitted from a resurgence from Buddy Hield, who has caught fire since being moved to the bench, shooting 48% from deep since being shifted to his 6th man role. They’ve also benefitted from awarding more playing time to Harry Giles, a promising sophomore who was unexpectedly forced out of the rotation in the first half of this campaign. With the chess pieces re-shuffled, the Kings are clicking, and their offense has spiked following the All-Star break, as since then they’ve cut down on turnovers and shot nearly 40% from deep as a team.
So, perhaps the Spanish cavalry chose just the right moment to arrive. Will the Raptors end the Kings’ hot streak? Will Big Spain make his impact felt? Let’s watch.
Where to Watch:
Sportsnet One at 9pm EST
Toronto — Kyle Lowry, Norman Powell, OG Anunoby, Pascal Siakam, Serge Ibaka
Sacramento — De’Aaron Fox, Bogdan Bogdanovic, Nemanja Bjelica, Harrison Barnes, Harry Giles
Toronto — Fred VanVleet (out - shoulder), Dewan Hernandez (out - ankle)
Sacramento — Marvin Bagley III (out - foot)