Subtle moves, solid start, big-time late-game shooting lead Raptors to impressive road win
I’m not going to say those were the second- and third-biggest late game three pointers Raptors have ever hit in Philly but I’m not going to say those shots by Trent and VanVleet weren’t the second- and third-best late game three pointers Raptors have ever hit in Philly, either.
Those were big time shots to win a game they had almost given away and a rather impressive victory given the back-to-back circumstances and how it all played out.
It was great to see Boucher be Boucher – we’ll have more on that tomorrow afternoon before the Pistons game – and, all told, the Raptors having a chance to be two games over .500 heading into a long, hard road trip isn’t a bad place to be.
They have some bumps to smooth out – as we mentioned in last night’s story – but if they win while smoothing them out, that’s all the better.
And there were these things, too:
A subtle change
Not sure how many noticed it – my head was swiveling between the TV screen and the computer screen while I typed – but there was one slight defensive adjustment in the final couple of minutes that was key.
And the kind of little thing that can make a big difference.
Let Nick explain.
“I thought we did a really nice job on the last couple of possessions. We made a couple of adjustments on our matchups and moved Precious over to, I think, Korkmaz so that OG could switch on to Maxey on the screen and roll with Drummond.
“We were able to get a couple stops there. And Precious did a good job changing … he really moved his feet and did a really good job on a smaller guy, interestingly enough.”
That and Scottie Barnes sliding over to either tip or disrupt a final shot were maybe the defensive moves of the game.
The second game of back to backs, especially for a team that plays nine guys most nights and 10 on occasion, calls for some changes to keep everyone fresh.
We saw right off the bat what that was going to be last night when Boucher and Banton replaced Anunoby and Trent before the game was five minutes old and the OG and Trent came back about three minutes later for Barnes and VanVleet and only Achiuwa got an extended run, going about the first nine minutes.