Game Preview: Raptors vs. Magic
Orlando Magic (24-55) @ Toronto Raptors (57-22)
When: Sunday, April 8th, 6 P.M. ET
Where: Air Canada Centre
Broadcast info: SN1, TSN1050
Toronto is 2-0 against the Magic this season, picking up a 93-86 victory in Orlando in the last meeting between these two teams. The Raptors were without DeMar DeRozan, who missed the game with a thigh contusion. Kyle Lowry led the Raptors with 25 points, while Serge Ibaka scored 13 points and Delon Wright and Norm Powell each added 10 points. Though things were even throughout the first half, the Raptors trailed 76-68 heading into the fourth. The final quarter saw Toronto's bench turn up the defence, holding the Magic to just 10 points as Orlando missed their first 11 shots of the quarter. The Raptors outscored the Magic 25-10 in the fourth as Lowry sealed the victory with a three-pointer to put Toronto ahead by 11 with 1:39 to play.
LEADING INTO TONIGHT'S GAME
Injury report: For the Raptors, the injury report is clear. For the Magic, Evan Fournier (sprained left knee), Jonathan Isaac (sprained left ankle), and Jonathan Simmons (right wrist contusion) are out. Aaron Gordon (sore right calf), Terrence Ross (sprained right MCL, non-displaced fracture of right tibial plateau), and Nikola Vucevic (low back tightness) are probable.
57 wins: The Raptors set a new franchise-record for wins in a single season when they defeated the Indiana Pacers 92-73 on Friday at the Air Canada Centre. The win moved Toronto to 57-22 on the season, breaking the previous record of 56-26, set during the 2015-16 season.
Top seed: In addition to setting a new franchise record for wins, Friday's victory also helped Toronto clinch the top seed in the Eastern Conference. This is the first time in franchise history that the Raptors will finish the regular season with the best record in their conference, and the third consecutive season it has topped 50 victories.
Hot at home: The Raptors have the second-best home record in the NBA, at 33-7 on the Air Canada Centre floor. Only Houston has been better at home (34-7), this season. Friday's victory gave Toronto a new franchise record for wins at home, with Sunday's match up against the Magic closing out the Raptors' regular season home games this season.
Finishing strong: Dwane Casey and his team have been adamant about wanting to finish the season strong, playing solid basketball the right way. Friday's victory against the Pacers saw the Raptors hold their opponent to a season-low 73 points. Indiana shot just 29.9 percent from the floor. After Sunday's match up against the Magic, the Raptors will head out on the road to close out the regular season with games in Detroit and Miami.
Points on the board: Serge Ibaka scored a season and team-high 25 points against the Pacers. He shot 10-for-13 from the floor, and 5-for-7 from beyond the arc. When Ibaka tops 20 points, the Raptors are a perfect 8-0 this season. He is averaging 18.7 points on 58 percent shooting to go along with 8.7 rebounds and 1.0 blocks in his last three games.