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Raptors vs. Rockets Matchup: A young duo arrives at Scotiabank Arena

After their offensive fizzled in Chicago, the Raps get a golden opportunity to get back on track against a young Rockets core still finding their way.

Preseason- Toronto Raptors v Houston Rockets Photo by Logan Riely/NBAE via Getty Images

And we’re back!

After a night off across the NBA for the U.S. midterm elections, the 6-5 Toronto Raptors return home tonight to host the Houston Rockets — a short stop before heading out on a three-game weekend road trip that’ll take them through Oklahoma City, Indiana and their old pal Dwane Casey’s gym in Detroit.

All four should be winnable games for Toronto, even without their superstar in Pascal Siakam, and the hope is that there’s no hangover from a Monday loss to the Bulls — one where the Raptors shot just 32.1% from three, tallied just 97 points, and saw their half court offense disintegrate next to a lack of transition opportunities.

This is a team that’s built to get out and run, but when the game slows down — and it will — a focal point tonight will be Scottie Barnes.

The Raptors sophomore managed just five points (albeit two with thunderous volume) on Monday, and was a big part of why Toronto’s offense wallowed in misery. With Siakam out, Fred VanVleet’s volume scoring — which he’s provided to the tune of 57 points over the last two games — won’t be enough. Scottie, and OG Anunoby and Gary Trent Jr. beside him, will need to step up.

On the other side, tonight: the Houston Rockets. There’s finally some hope for the post-James Harden Rockets these days, thanks to a glut of draft swaps from the Brooklyn Nets and the dynamic duo of Kevin Porter Jr. and Jalen Green — both of whom are still under 22 years of age. While it hasn’t looked refined yet for the two athletic, downhill-minded forwards, there’s potential to be found. Houston is a bottom-dweller at 2-9, but the Raptors can’t take this squad lightly in a span of winnable games.

Where to Watch:

TSN, 7:30 PM ET


Toronto Raptors – Fred VanVleet, Gary Trent Jr., OG Anunoby, Scottie Barnes, Christian Koloko

Houston Rockets – Kevin Porter Jr., Jalen Green, Eric Gordon, Jabari Smith, Alperen Sengun


Toronto Raptors – Justin Champagnie (back – questionable), Pascal Siakam (groin – out), Khem Birch (knee – out)

Houston Rockets – Jae’Sean Tate (ankle – out), Bruno Fernando (kneecap – out)