10 things I saw from Raptors-Knicks (27–2–2017)

  1. Was that basketball? Seriously that was hard to watch. Sloppy turnovers, needless fouling on every other play, airballed threes from every angle, loads of standing around doing nothing with the ball.
  2. DeKOBE at MSG: Somebody will stop DeMar DeRozan eventually, but not today. Despite facing triple teams all night and a packed paint, DeRozan still got 37. That includes the game winning dagger right in Derrick Rose’s face. He got us.
  3. Lowry-sized hole: Aside from DeMar, the offense was dogshit. Get used to these types of nights without Lowry. There’s a noticeable lack of offensive organization, very little in terms of transition points, and most importantly there is absolutely zero outside shooting.
  4. Pure grit: Can PJ Tucker score? Not at all. But he defends like a madman and he gets after the offensive glass. He got three extra possessions in the fourth with his hustle, took a charge on Rose and lived in Carmelo Anthony’s jersey.
  5. Bebe benched: Dwane Casey tweaked rotations to get Jonas Valanciunas with bench crew, then some of Jakob Poeltl and loads of Serge Ibaka at center. That erased the struggling Bebe Nogueira from the rotation entirely.
  6. 905 crew: Fred VanVleet giving them a boost along with Delon Wright. Wright drilled a three while FVV moved the ball better than anyone else tonight. We need all hands on deck without Lowry.
  7. Rushing it: Norman Powell is a good player, no doubt, but he’s not yet at the level where he can reliably create his own offense. He was forcing a lot of action from up top. Norm was much better when he attacked closeouts as the third option.
  8. TFW you’re secretly 35: Ibaka had no legs on the second night of a back to back. He couldn’t jump for shot contests and restored to fouling endlessly. Still wet with the J, tho.
  9. Bullet dodged: One, Melo had a wide open look at the game winning three. Two, we ducked OT which would have been unbearable.
  10. Shoutout to Papa Woodley for making some fire salsa. That shit is good. I take back my earlier slander. Also thanks to Sean Woodley for his hospitality.