With some more time to get acclimated, there’s reason to believe Gary Trent Jr. and Rodney Hood may be more comfortable in their roles tonight. This goes double when we consider that Toronto’s opponent on the evening is their old team, the Portland Trail Blazers. There’s reason to believe they might have some insider information on what the Blazers will be doing and how the Raptors can stop it.
That said, there are few players or defensive schemes who can stop a healthy and angry Damian Lillard. He’s made a name for himself as a force-of-nature-type player who can — and again, has — done everything in his power to put his team on top in any given game. Dame missed the Blazers’ previous contest due to a knee contusion, but Yahoo sources have indicated that he will return to the floor tonight. Coupled with the power of CJ McCollum and a player of unknown origin, some dude named Norman Powell, the Blazers could be a load for the Raptors this evening.
Then again, maybe Trent Jr., young and spry and looking to prove himself as part of the locked-in Raptors starting unit, could be a difference maker. And maybe Hood, in place of some of Toronto’s other bench options, will slot in nicely as well. It’s only their second game as Raptors, but we can still hope. (And of course they’ll have to get comfortable without Kyle Lowry tonight — though after the month he’s had, he could use a night off.)
You can read up on more here on Raptors-Blazers from this morning. Below are the quietly game updated details. Now, let’s watch.
Where to Watch
Sportsnet at 7pm EST
Toronto — Fred VanVleet, Gary Trent Jr., OG Anunoby, Pascal Siakam, Aron Baynes
Portland — Damian Lillard, CJ McCollum, Norman Powell, Robert Covington, Jusuf Nurkic
Toronto — Patrick McCaw (out - knee), DeAndre’ Bembry (out - health and safety protocols), Paul Watson (out - health and safety protocols), Jalen Harris (out - hip), Kyle Lowry (out - foot)
Portland — Zach Collins (ankle - out), Nassir Little (thumb - out)