You knew this was going to happen, right?
The past few weeks for the Toronto Raptors have been quite uncharacteristic — which is saying a lot considering the fake season in Tampa. The Raptors had been the league’s worst-ranked defense and were playing like a lottery team.
As the saying goes, the regular season is a marathon, not a sprint. While Toronto was experiencing the valley-est of valleys, they now look to be on the ascent of a promising peak. Fred VanVleet is looking very All-Star-worthy. The defense is looking much more coordinated. And the schedule is very home-friendly in December.
In this week’s episode, we also dive into a plethora of NBA news, including Toronto’s next opponent, the Oklahoma City Thunder, who are in danger of being relegated to the G League.
In This Episode:
5:11 — Is the tide turning?
A two-game winning streak is nothing to brag about. But any win streak is a good win streak, especially when it comes at the expense of the defending champs and a fraudulent team that probably shouldn’t be above Toronto in the standings.
17:17 — Fred Van All-Star?
The Eastern Conference has been a lot more competitive than in recent years. Toronto sits in 12th, but are only two games back in the loss column from the 4th-place Heat. That also means there are plenty more All-Star candidates to choose from. If Toronto can continue their improvement climb into a playoff position by month’s end — and assuming it’s VanVleet that continues leading the way — does that nudge Fred towards his first All-Star selection?
28:45 — A historic loss
73. How does a basketball team with 15 of the top 450 professional basketball players in the entire world lose a game by 73 points? I have no more words to use that won’t further jinx the Raptors when they face the Thunder on Wednesday.
38:55 — Tumbling down NBA rabbit holes
If this season is a sign of LeBron James’ “decline”, then he may still be playing with his grandchildren, let alone his own children. Speaking of Bronny, he should be entering the NBA in approximately two years. Will Brandon Ingram or Zion Williamson still be Pelicans in 2023? Will they even be with New Orleans in 2022?? The latest COVID outbreak has hit the Charlotte Hornets so hard, it’s giving Raptors fans flashbacks to last season. Is this the beginning of an NBA-wide outbreak? The Hornets recently played Chicago and, would you believe it, DeMar DeRozan is now in Health & Safety protocols.