Game Rap: Raptors 121, Warriors 127
Holly MacKenzie - Raptors.com
IT WAS OVER WHEN
Stephen Curry made a pair of free throws with 3.3 seconds remaining to seal a 127-121 Warriors victory. After trailing by 17 with less than five minutes to go, the Raptors used a furious push to get within four in the final seconds of the game, but were ultimately unable to get the stops needed to pull out a win for the team’s annual Drake Night.
DeMarre Carroll returned to the starting five after missing the previous two games for rest. Carroll played 24 minutes, scoring eight points on 3-for-7 field goals to go with three rebounds, two assists and a steal.
STRONG FIRST QUARTER
Despite playing in an emotionally charged game in Cleveland the night before, the Raptors came out ready to go on Wednesday night. There wasn't a lot of defence in the opening quarter, with the Raptors shooting 58 percent and the Warriors 57 percent, and Toronto holding a 38-34 lead after the first 12 minutes of game time.
SECOND QUARTER TURNAROUND
Things flipped in the second quarter as Toronto went ice cold from the floor while the Warriors stayed hot. The Raptors shot just 5-for-24 in the quarter compared to Golden State’s 12-for-22 shooting performance. The Warriors outscored Toronto 32-15 in the quarter behind 10 points apiece from Stephen Curry and Kevin Durant as they ended the half on a 21-4 run to take a 66-53 halftime lead.
Despite tired legs and the almost impossible task of trying to stick with the Warriors never-ending roster of scorers, the Raptors continued to fight in the second half. After falling behind by 19 points, the team repeatedly cut into Golden State’s lead and dug deep to find the energy to play intense defence into the final seconds, forcing the Warriors to stick with its starters until the final buzzer sounded.
RAPTORS PLAYER OF THE GAME
DeMar DeRozan led the way for Toronto offensively, scoring a team-high 34 points. DeRozan shot 8-for-18 from the floor, a perfect 17-for-17 from the free throw line, and added six rebounds, four assists and a steal in 38 minutes of action. DeRozan became the first player with nine 30-point games through his team’s first 11 games of the season since Michael Jordan in 1987-88. Through 11 games, DeRozan is averaging a league-leading 33.3 points per contest.
UNDERRATED RAPTORS PLAYER OF THE GAME
Rookie Pascal Siakam continues to find ways to impress the Raptors coaching staff when he’s on the floor. Siakam earned 30 minutes of playing time against the Warriors, scoring 10 points on 5-for-10 shooting, to go with nine rebounds and a steal. When Siakam was in the game, the Raptors were a +6.
THAT'S A RAP…
“We have a lot of fight to us. We … know it’s never over. We’re always going to fight to the end. I think that’s the biggest thing. We have a lot of heart. No matter what, we’re always going to find a way to keep ourselves in the game.”
- Terrence Ross on the fight of the team in a tough back-to-back situation
BY THE #’S
50…Points in the paint for the Warriors, 40 for the Raptors.
33…Assists for Golden State, 16 for Toronto.
7…Blocked shots for the Warriors, one for the Raptors. Draymond Green had a game-high three blocked shots for the Warriors, to go along with 11 points, seven rebounds, five assists and three steals.
41…Free throw attempts for Toronto (37-for-41), compared with 28 for Golden State (26-for-28).
35…Points, seven assists, three rebounds, one steal for Stephen Curry on 10-for-19 field goals, 3-for-9 three-point field goals and 12-for-13 free throws.
THEY SAID IT…
“I thought he competed. I thought he brought us energy. We knew these two games were going to be tough, difficult. I thought his youthful enthusiasm, bouncing around, kept us going and got us bouncing. We were able to switch with him some at the 5. I thought his energy was great, coming out of the pick-and-roll and trying to guard guys like [Stephen] Curry and [Kevin] Durant, you name it. Really loved the way he played, what he brought to the table. I’m really excited for his future. He’s going to be an excellent player for us.”
- Dwane Casey on the energy provided by rookie Pascal Siakam
“They switched everything and got more physical. We got uncharacteristic with turnovers and the shots we took. They got into it a little bit, but we have to maintain our composure and continue to get better.”
- Kyle Lowry on the second quarter where Golden State went on its run
“We played both of the best teams in the NBA. We were right there and had a couple of stretches where we could have put it away. We gave it away. With that we understand that we were right there with two of the top teams in the league. We now have to carry this over and go on the road and do what we know how to do.”
- DeMar DeRozan on moving past a tough back-to-back and focusing on the upcoming five-game road trip
The Raptors look to get back in the winning column as they kick off a five-game road trip in Denver against the Nuggets on Friday at 9 P.M. ET.