Game Preview: Raptors vs Bulls
Toronto Raptors (12-4) @ Chicago (4-12)
When: Saturday, November 17, 8 P.M. ET
Where: United Center
Leading into tonight’s game:
Injury Report: For the Raptors, Norman Powell is out with a left shoulder subluxation. The team has issued an injury update, saying that Powell will be out indefinitely after suffering the injury Nov. 5 at Utah. C.J. Miles has missed Toronto’s previous two games because of a right adductor strain and his availability for Saturday is to be determined. OG Anunoby left Friday’s game with a right wrist sprain and did not return. His status for Saturday is also to be determined. For the Bulls, Kris Dunn (left MCL sprain), Lauri Markkanen (right elbow sprain), Bobby Portis (right MCL sprain) and Denzel Valentine (left ankle sprain) are out.
Back-to-back: The Raptors are in Chicago to face the Bulls on a back-to-back following a tough 123-116 overtime loss in Boston on Friday. Chicago is also on a back-to-back after a 123-104 loss against the Bucks in Milwaukee. This is the first in a pair of back-to-backs for the Raptors in this four-game road trip. After Saturday's contest against the Bulls, Toronto will head to Orlando to take on the Magic and then finish out the trip in Atlanta in a back-to-back against the Hawks. Toronto swept the 2017-18 season series against the Bulls.
Back on track: Friday’s loss to the Celtics was Toronto’s first overtime game of the season. It also gave the Raptors their first three-game losing streak of the season. With three games left on this road trip, the team is eager to get on track and get back in the winning column. After giving up a 19-point lead against the Pistons on Wednesday, Toronto led by eight with 10:24 remaining against the Celtics, but couldn’t slow Kyrie Irving who scored 23 of his season-high 43 in the fourth quarter and overtime.
Man down: The Raptors were already without C.J. Miles and Norman Powell when things tipped off on Friday in Boston. The game going into overtime meant big minutes for Toronto's starters after the team lost OG Anunoby to a sprained wrist and later Danny Green and Pascal Siakam when both fouled out late. The quick turnaround of Saturday’s road back-to-back could provide an opportunity for Raptors reserves to step in and take some of the load off the starting five.
Season-high: Kawhi Leonard led Toronto in Friday’s loss with 31 points and a season-high (and game-high) 15 rebounds. He shot 11-for-25 from the floor and 9-for-11 from the free-throw line, while adding four assists and three steals in 43 minutes. Leonard is leading the Raptors in scoring this season, averaging 24.8 points and 8.4 rebounds per contest.
Ibaka rolling: Serge Ibaka had another strong game on Friday, finishing with 21 points on 8-for-15 field goals. He has topped 10 points in Toronto's last 14 games and is averaging 17.6 points and 8.4 rebounds on the season while shooting 57.4 percent. The only Raptors player to shoot a better percentage from the floor this season is Pascal Siakam, who is making 63.3 percent of his field goals to rank fourth in the league.