In the midst of a dismal five-game losing streak, the Raptors finally got some positive news on Tuesday afternoon when it comes to their players in health and safety protocol. Pascal Siakam, Fred VanVleet, Malachi Flynn, and Patrick McCaw were all cleared to participate in tonight’s evening practice.
Raptors clear Siakam, VanVleet, Flynn and McCaw to practice tonight ahead of tomorrow's game in Detroit, team says.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) March 16, 2021
Siakam, Flynn, and McCaw are listed as questionable for tomorrow’s game against Detroit, while VanVleet is doubtful. That leaves just OG Anunoby on the outside looking in, as the forward remains in health and safety protocols for the time being.
Though it would appear that these five players all came in contact with COVID-19 during the same time period, the reality is that different timelines are playing out here — with some cleared for individual drills earlier than others. The likelihood of everyone returning tomorrow is therefore pretty low, but it bodes well to get at least someone back. That’s news the Raptors are surely overjoyed to hear, especially if it’s Siakam, as the offense has suffered without him.
Toronto has lost games against the Pistons, Celtics, Hawks, Hornets, and Bulls over the last two weeks and after facing Detroit tomorrow, it’ll be imperative to get healthy with matchups against Denver, Phoenix, Portland, and Oklahoma City all before the month of March is finished. Believe it or not, the team is on the clock if they’re going to climb back into the playoff hunt and out of the dreaded play in scenario. At least today’s news is a tiny step toward realizing that.