WOLSTAT: Five things we’ve learned about the Raptors in the bubble — Toronto Sun

The Toronto Raptors will conclude their bizarre regular season on Friday afternoon against Denver. The playoffs will begin on Monday. Read More

WOLSTAT: Five things we’ve learned about the Raptors in the bubble — Toronto Sun

Raps lock down second seed in the East with bounceback win over Grizzlies — Toronto Sun

Back on track is probably the best way to sum up the Toronto Raptors after Sunday’s win over a game Memphis Grizzlies squad. Read More

Raps lock down second seed in the East with bounceback win over Grizzlies — Toronto Sun

WOLSTAT: VanVleet’s career night leads Raptors over pesky Heat — Toronto Sun

The Toronto Raptors remain undefeated in the bubble, but Win No. 2 took even more grit than the previous victory. Read More

WOLSTAT: VanVleet’s career night leads Raptors over pesky Heat — Toronto Sun

NBA champions Toronto Raptors ready to pick up where they left off — Global News

The NBA’s suspension on March 11 was just the first domino to fall in what would become a worldwide swath. Continue reading →

NBA champions Toronto Raptors ready to pick up where they left off — Global News

By Lori Ewing The Canadian Press

Posted August 1, 2020 12:12 pm

The Toronto Raptors were the hottest team in the NBA in early March, on a league-best four-game winning streak, coming off a solid west coast road swing and having just clinched a playoff spot. They were gleefully making their pre-season critics eat their words.

Then the threat of COVID-19 swept through sports like a prairie fire. The NBA’s suspension on March 11 was just the first domino to fall in what would become a worldwide swath.

Now, 145 days after the Raptors last played a meaningful game — a 101-92 win against the Jazz on March 9 — the Raptors will resume defence of their NBA championship Saturday against the Los Angeles Lakers in a world that looks vastly different than when they walked off the court in Utah.

The Raptors will try to hoist the Larry O’Brien Trophy again in the NBA bubble’s almost-empty arena at the ESPN Wide World of Sports complex at Walt Disney World Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Fla., while the coronavirus rages all around them. And they hope to continue their work on social justice while they’re at it.

After the killing of George Floyd by a Minneapolis police officer that sparked an American uprising, players worried that the NBA’s resumption would stall the momentum. Their voices wouldn’t be heard. So the league and its players have dedicated much of the restart to racial justice work.

As the team’s senior basketball adviser Wayne Embry says in a Raptors’ promo video: “We are not just returning to play, we are coming back to fight — ball in hand and fist held high.”

The Raptors are No. 2 in the Eastern Conference (46-18), and shouldn’t fall any lower than third through the eight seeding-round games that determine post-season matchups.

While the loss of Kawhi Leonard to the Los Angeles Clippers last summer had people scoffing at Toronto’s chances at another deep playoff run, the Raptors paid no attention, climbing to second in the conference despite being hobbled by injuries — Toronto was fifth worst in the league in games lost to injury.

A place in the NBA Finals would mean being sequestered at the NBA’s campus until mid-October. Coach Nick Nurse believes his team has what it takes to ring in the fall at Disney World.

“I think we’ve got some special players, I think we’ve got a good combination of experience with some energetic youth, I think we play defence and we really like to play defence. I think if you play defence at a level that we’re capable of doing it, you can go a long ways any season, really,” he said.

Nurse spoke of the “specialness” of certain players, and then proceeded to list off virtually his whole roster.

“It’s a good group of guys, and we’ve got some toughness and we love to play and we love to compete,” he said. “We’re looking forward to being able to do what we do out there and we think we’re hard to beat.”

The Raptors have the toughest schedule of the 22 teams in the bubble, facing teams such as Milwaukee, Philadelphia and Boston over the next two weeks.

Nurse said his players can’t wait to get going.

“The feel, there’s an excitement and an energy there but it seems to be very similar, back to regular season,” he said. “It feels like it’s March . . . as far as the games go, it’s an attitude that it’s March rather than November, October (the traditional start of the regular season), whatever.”4:05Coronavirus: How major sports leagues are returning to play amid pandemicCoronavirus: How major sports leagues are returning to play amid pandemic

Injuries are a concern after a four-month layoff that for many players was the longest of their career.

Nurse likely won’t tighten up his rotation until the playoffs, to allow his players time to ease back into playing full-out games. But it could be tough to rein them in.STORY CONTINUES BELOW ADVERTISEMENT

“You know it’s gonna be too hard for me and players like myself and all pros to hold back,” scrappy guard Kyle Lowry said. “Nick’s gonna do his best for us and we trust him and what he’s gonna do and we’re gonna roll with the decisions that he makes and we’re gonna go out there and try to get better and try to win every game.”

Serge Ibaka believes the Raptors’ experience and sense of togetherness will carry them far into the post-season.

READ MORE: Vagabond Blue Jays stuck on the road with no one to play

“We have that confidence in us now, after last year, we believe in us,” he said. “I think it’s our confidence, nobody can take that from us, we trust each other, we know what to do to win. . . No matter what’s going around out there, whatever they’re saying (about us), I think that’s one thing they cannot take from us is our confidence, and how we live with each other, how we know how to play with each other, I think one thing that nobody can take that from us.”

Is there anything Lowry is curious about seeing from his team after the long hiatus?

“Nah,” he said. “I just want to get back to work, to be honest with you.”

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WATCH: 1 YEAR AGO, Raptors take 3-1 NBA Finals stranglehold on Warriors — Toronto Sun

A year ago Sunday the Toronto Raptors responded to a tough NBA Finals loss at Oakland to seize full control over Golden State. Read More

WATCH: 1 YEAR AGO, Raptors take 3-1 NBA Finals stranglehold on Warriors — Toronto Sun

Iowa football players put fans on notice: Support their movement or don’t support the Hawkeyes —

Former and now current players have voiced their opinions on social media over the last several days

Iowa football players put fans on notice: Support their movement or don’t support the Hawkeyes —

Happy birthday to Raptors’ Pascal Siakam, here’s to better times for all of us — Toronto Sun

You can bet Pascal Siakam didn’t spend his 26th birthday the way he wanted to or has in the past. Siakam, a noted gym rat who likes nothing better than working on his game, would, in normal times, have been getting a few shots up at the Raptors practice facility on the bridge day between…

Happy birthday to Raptors’ Pascal Siakam, here’s to better times for all of us — Toronto Sun

ou can bet Pascal Siakam didn’t spend his 26th birthday the way he wanted to or has in the past. Siakam, a noted gym rat who likes nothing better than working on his game, would, in normal times, have been getting a few shots up at the Raptors practice facility on the bridge day between games against NBA-leading Milwaukee, Toronto’s opponent in last year’s Eastern Conference final.

Instead, he was cooped inside like the rest of us. The COVID-19 pandemic shut down the entire world and also put a pause on Siakam’s second straight breakout season. The league’s reigning most improved player took several more steps forward in 2019-20, emerging as Toronto’s top scoring option, as well as an ultra-elite defender.

The good news for Raptors fans is that there is no reason to think he is done improving and he’ll do it in Canada. Siakam signed a long-term, max-deal before the season, which should keep him in Toronto for at least four more years.

“(He’s) somebody we’re definitely going to keep for a long time here,” Raptors president Masai Ujiri had said before the deal was even signed. “And we see what the potential of that could be.” In a recent Instagram Live chat, DeMar DeRozan said Siakam had “the blueprint” to become the greatest Raptor ever in time.

more….

Happy birthday to Raptors’ Pascal Siakam, here’s to better times for all of us — Toronto Sun

Siakam’s agent Ramasar talks about doing the job during coronavirus shutdown — Toronto Sun

One of the key requirements of being an NBA agent is spending plenty of in-person time with your clients. Of course, that’s an impossibility these days, with measures in place to try to stem the coronavirus pandemic. Self-quarantining and social distancing are the themes of the moment, so everyone needs to adapt, including in the…

Siakam’s agent Ramasar talks doing the job in age of coronavirus — Toronto Sun

Todd Ramasar said he’s talking to Pascal Siakam and the rest of his clients more frequently in lieu of being able to visit.

“Because, I think more than anything, and this is not just for athletes,  you just talk about the effects on mental health. Kind of being in self-isolation,” Ramasar told Postmedia in a phone interview. “Even with family and loved ones, just having your normal routine taken away overnight, it takes its toll on anybody. So, for a lot of my guys, it’s just making sure they’re good,” he said.

Information is constantly arriving as we all go through his odd period and it’s no different for professional athletes. Ramasar says questions have been evolving as more is learned and as more time passes.

“The initial conversations were mainly business. Also their health and safety. But now that we’re a week into this, it’s more like, ‘Are you good. How can we be helpful?’” he said.

“A lot of them are staying (put), can’t go work out at their facilities. So trying to get workout equipment into their homes and talk to their teams. Just making sure that they’re not getting stir-crazy just sitting in their homes. Since there aren’t very many activities for them to do,” Ramasar said.

“There’s literally nothing. You can’t go to the movies, you can’t go shopping. You can’t go out to eat. Everything is from home base. And for these guys, where their internal clock has been on the road traveling (for 41 road outings or more) or going to a game or, you know, interacting with (team) staff and personnel. That camaraderie. And then, overnight, that’s taken away or that shifts. That’s tough,” Ramasar told Postmedia.

It’s also difficult because nobody knows what’s next, or how long it might take before training and games can resume.

“It’s tough to say, I mean I think it’s gonna be challenging the longer this plays out. Because it’s not a matter of logistics,” Ramasar said when asked to opine on when the league will be back. “I think for the NBA to return the season, say, in mid-June, it’s more of a matter that these guys are going to need at least a month to practice and find the rhythm and the chemistry again that they would have lost over that extended period of time. Because, what you don’t want to do is put these high-level athletes back on the floor without practice. To throw them out there in a high-level environment, which would be the playoffs (and potentially the end of the regular season), I think it’ll put them in harm’s way and increase the likelihood of serious injury. And that’s the challenge.”

more….

Siakam’s agent Ramasar talks doing the job in age of coronavirus — Toronto Sun

RAPTORS AT JAZZ PREGAME NOTES: Marc Gasol (injury management, hamstring) listed as out; Fred VanVleet (shoulder) listed as out.

INJURY REPORT AT 5:30 P.M. MONDAY

Toronto Raptors : Brissett, Oshae Out G League – Two-Way
Gasol, Marc Out Injury/Illness – Left Hamstring; Tightness – Injury management
Hernandez, Dewan Out Injury/Illness – Right Ankle; Sprain
VanVleet, Fred Out Injury/Illness – Left Shoulder; Soreness
Watson, Paul Out G League – Two-Way
Utah Jazz : Brantley, Jarrell Out G League – Two-Way
Morgan, Juwan Available G League – On Assignment
Tucker, Rayjon Available G League – On Assignment
Williams-Goss, Nigel Out Injury/Illness – Left Quad; Contusion
Wright-Foreman, Justin Out G League – Two-Way

RAPTORS NOTES
• The Toronto Raptors complete a five-game Western Conference road trip (Mar. 1-9) Monday night when they visit the Utah Jazz at Vivint Smart Home Arena. The Raptors have won three in a row vs. Utah. With a victory Monday, Toronto would sweep the season-series with the Jazz for the fifth time in the last seven seasons. Since the start of the 2013-14 season, the Raptors are 11-2 against Utah.
• In the first meeting this season (Dec. 1), Pascal Siakam scored 35 points, Fred VanVleet had 21 points and 11 assists, and the Raptors used a record-setting first half to beat the Jazz 130-110. Toronto led 77-37
at the intermission, the biggest halftime lead in franchise history, the biggest in the NBA this season, and tied for the eighth largest in league history. It also marked the biggest halftime deficit in Jazz history.
Norman Powell scored a game-high 31 points Mar. 8 at Sacramento. Powell has now scored 30+ points in consecutive games (Mar. 5-8) for the first time in his career, including a career-high 37 points Thursday
at Golden State. He is averaging 37.0 points and is shooting .571 (24-42) from the field, including 50 percent (10-20) from three-point range, over the last two games. Three of Powell’s four career 30-point outings have come this season.
• Toronto is currently 9-3 on the road vs. the Western Conference. The Raptors are the only Eastern Conference team to finish with a +.500 record on the road against the west in each of the last five seasons (2015-20). Since the start of the 2015-16 campaign, Toronto is 44-28 (.611) when facing a Western Conference
opponent away from Scotiabank Arena.
Pascal Siakam is averaging career highs of 23.6 points and 7.5 rebounds through 52 games played this season. Only two players in Raptors history have finished a season averaging at least 23.0 points and 7.0 rebounds: Chris Bosh in 2009–10 (24.0, 10.8) and Kawhi Leonard in 2018–19 (26.6, 7.3).
OG Anunoby finished 12 points and two rebounds Sunday at Sacramento. Anunoby has now scored in double figures in a career-high six straight games (Feb. 25 – Mar. 8). He is averaging 16.0 points and is
shooting .565 (35-62) from the floor, including 52 per cent (13-25) from three-point distance, during this
span. Anunoby scored a career-best 32 points Mar. 1 at Denver.
Norman Powell and Kyle Lowry scored 31 and 30 points, respectively, Sunday vs. the Kings. The duo became just the fifth starting backcourt to each score 30 points in a game for Toronto, joining Lowry and DeMar DeRozan (four times), Mike James and Morris Peterson (twice), Vince Carter and Jalen Rose
(once) and DeRozan and Cory Joseph (once). Over the last five games (Feb. 28 – Mar. 8), Lowry and Powell have combined to average 52.4 points.
• The Raptors have not lost games on consecutive days since Dec. 26–27, 2017 (at Dallas and Oklahoma City). Toronto has played 30 pairs of games on back-to-back days since then (not including the current back-to-back set), sweeping both games 12 times and splitting 18 times.
• Toronto’s starting lineup combined for 111 points Sunday against Sacramento. The Raptors starting five shot .544 (37-68) from the field, including .459 (17-37) from beyond the arc.


PROBABLE STARTERS
F – OG ANUNOBY #3

MIN: 30.1 REB: 5.4 AST: 1.6 STL: 1.4 TO: 1.2 BLK: 0.7 PTS: 10.8

• Contributed 12 points, two rebounds and one steal in 39 minutes Mar. 8 at Sacramento.
• Toronto is 25-7 this season when Anunoby scores 10 or more points.
• Shooting .520 (13-for-25) from three-point range over the last six games (Feb. 25 – Mar. 8).


F – PASCAL SIAKAM #43

MIN: 35.5 REB: 7.5 AST: 3.5 STL: 1.0 TO: 2.4 BLK: 0.9 PTS: 23.6


• Finished with 23 points, eight rebounds, five assists and three steals in 38 minutes Mar. 8 at Sacramento.
• Ranks 15th in the NBA in scoring (23.6); averaging 26.0 points against the West Conference this season.
• Has scored 30+ points 15 times; had five 30-point performances in 80 games played last season.


C – SERGE IBAKA #9

MIN: 27.4 REB: 8.2 AST: 1.4 STL: 0.5 TO: 2.0 BLK: 0.9 PTS: 15.8


• Recorded 15 points, a team-high 10 rebounds, five assists and two blocks in 36 minutes Mar. 8 at Sacramento.
• Averaging 17.9 points, 9.0 rebounds and 31.3 minutes in 26 games as a starter this season.
• Is the only player in NBA history with 500+ three-point field goals and 1,500+ blocks.


G – NORMAN POWELL #24

MIN: 29.5 REB: 3.7 AST: 1.8 STL: 1.3 TO: 1.5 BLK: 0.4 PTS: 16.8


• Led all scorers with 31 points Mar. 8 at Sacramento; added five assists and two rebounds in 43 minutes.
• Averaging 19.7 points, 3.6 rebounds and 33.3 minutes in 22 start this season.
• Has scored 20 or more points in five straight games (Feb. 28 – Mar. 8); averaging 28.0 points during this stretch.


G – KYLE LOWRY #7

MIN: 36.4 REB: 4.8 AST: 7.7 STL: 1.3 TO: 3.0 BLK: 0.4 PTS: 19.7


• Totaled 30 points, a game-high eight assists, five rebounds and three steals in 36 minutes Mar. 8 at Sacramento.
• Ranks seventh in the NBA in assists per game (7.7); has dished out 10+ assists 14 times.
• Has scored 20+ points in four of the last five games (Feb. 28 – Mar. 8); averaging 24.4 points during this span.

TONIGHT’S GAME DETAILS Opponent: Utah Jazz Date: Monday, March 9 Tip-Off: 9 p.m. (ET) Venue: Vivint Smart Home Arena Television: TSN Radio: Sportsnet 590 The FAN

SERIES RECAP VS. UTAH

OVERALL HOME ROAD 2019-20 1-0 1-0 0-0 ALL-TIME 19-27 10-13 9-14 STREAKS Won 3 Won 2 Won 3

LAST WIN: December 1, 2019 (130-110)

LAST ROAD WIN: November 5, 2018 (124-111)

LARGEST MARGIN OF VICTORY: +24, November 9, 2013

LARGEST MARGIN OF DEFEAT: -32, December 7, 2012

LAST TIME VS. UTAH

GAME 19 – DECEMBER 1, 2019 TORONTO 130, UTAH 110

TORONTO — The Utah Jazz scored nine points in the first four minutes of the game … The Toronto Raptors scored 72 points over the next 20 … Pascal Siakam had 35 points, Fred VanVleet had 21 points and 11 assists, and the Raptors beat the Utah Jazz 130-110 with an historic first half … The Raptors led 77-37 through two quarters — the biggest halftime lead in Raptors history, and the largest in the league this season … It’s also tied for the eighth biggest halftime lead in NBA history, and the largest deficit at the break ever for Utah … The Raptors stretched their season-high winning streak to seven games … Norman Powell scored 15 points, Serge Ibaka had 13 in his first game since missing 10 with an ankle injury, Terence Davis had 13, Marc Gasol scored all 11 of his points in the first quarter, and OG Anunoby and Rondae Hollis-Jefferson had 10 apiece … Mike Conley had 20 points to lead Utah … Toronto took off on a 23-2 run in the first quarter … Utah found its form in the third quarter, shooting 60 per cent and paring Toronto’s lead briefly to 16 … Toronto held Utah to 5-for-25 shooting in the second quarter … The Jazz hit 16 of their first 19 shots in the third … Utah outscored Toronto 49-30 in third, and Toronto took a 107-86 advantage into the fourth.

1 2 3 4 TOT

UTAH 20 17 49 24 110

TORONTO 37 40 30 23 130

UTAH LAST GAME’S STARTERS (19-20 Averages)

44 BOJAN BOGDANOVIĆ F • 6-8 • 226 • Croatia PPG • 20.5 RPG • 4.2 APG • 2.1 • Posted career-highs in points (18.0), rebounds (4.1), assists (2.0), steals (0.9), field goal percentage (.497) and 3-point percentage (.425) last season with the Indiana Pacers • Ranked 38th in field goal percentage and 10th in 3-point percentage in the league last year

23 ROYCE O’NEALE F • 6-4 • 222 • Baylor PPG • 6.1 RPG • 5.3 APG • 2.6 • Has played internationally in Spain and Germany • Was born in Harker Heights, Texas • Third on the team in field goal percentage in 2018-19 (.475) (min. 200 attempts)

27 RUDY GOBERT C • 7-1 • 258 • Cholet Basket PPG • 15.2 RPG • 13.9 BPG • 2.0 • Two-time NBA Defensive Player of the Year (2018, 2019) • 2016-17 All-NBA Second Team and 2018-19 All-NBA Third Team • First player since Wilt Chamberlain (1966-67) to total over 1,200 points on better than 65 percent shooting and 1,000 rebounds in a single season (2018-19)

45 DONOVAN MITCHELL G • 6-1 • 220 • Louisville PPG • 24.4 RPG • 4.4 APG • 4.3 • Led all NBA sophomores in scoring in 2018-19 (23.8 ppg) • Two-time Western Conference Player of the Week (1/6-1/13 & 2/25-3/3) • Tied career-high scoring 46 points against New Orleans on 1/16/20

10 MIKE CONLEY G • 6-0 • 180 • Ohio State PPG • 13.9 RPG • 3.2 APG • 4.3 • Currently one of only 10 active players to have totaled over 11,000 points, 4,500 assists, 2,000 rebounds and 1,000 steals. • Named to the 2012-13 All-NBA Defensive Second Team. • Named 2019 Twyman-Stokes teammate of the year.
2019.

NOTES

DONOVAN FROM DEEP Donovan Mitchell has now made 528 three-point field goals in his career. He is fourth all time in the NBA in three pointers made in the first three seasons of his career, trailing Buddy Hield (602), Damian Lillard (599) and Klay Thompson (545).

BOGEY’S EFFICIENCY Bojan Bogdanović is currently one of two players in the NBA averaging over 20 points per game while shooting at least 40 percent from the field and 90 percent from the free throw line, joining the Bucks Khris Middleton.

ROAD DOMINANCE The Jazz this season have put together two road winning streaks of at least six games, the first coming 12/28/19 through 1/14/20 (six games), and the second being the current road win streak beginning on 2/9/20 (currently at six games). Per the Elias Sports Bureau, it’s the first time the Jazz have put together two separate road winning streaks of at least six games since the 1994-1995 season.

LAST 5 PLAYERS TO TOTAL 4,500+ PTS, 800+ REBS AND 800+ ASTS WITHIN THEIR FIRST 200 NBA GAMES # PLAYER GP PTS REBS ASTS 1 Donovan Mitchell 200 4,530 802 800 2 LeBron James 200 5,097 1,298 1,299 3 Dwyane Wade 200 4,564 1,005 1,212 4 Allen Iverson 200 4,699 827 1,272 5 Michael Jordan 200 6,351 1,120 1,030
FASTEST ACTIVE PLAYERS TO 1,000 BLOCKS Rank Player Games 1 Serge Ibaka 383 2 Anthony Davis 414 3 Rudy Gobert 462
MOST 20+ PT GAMES THROUGH FIRST 200 GAMES WITH JAZZ # PLAYER GP # 1 Donovan Mitchell 200 134 2 Darrell Griffith 200 121 3 Karl Malone 200 102 4 Deron Williams 200 49 5 Rodney Hood 200 33
MOST 30+ PT GAMES THROUGH FIRST 200 GAMES WITH JAZZ # PLAYER GP # 1 Donovan Mitchell 200 36 2 Darrell Griffith 200 26 3 Karl Malone 200 21 4 Deron Williams 200 7 5 Carlos Boozer 200 3
MOST PTS THROUGH FIRST 200 GAMES WITH JAZZ # PLAYER GP PTS 1 Donovan Mitchell 200 4,530 2 Darrell Griffith 200 4,172 3 Karl Malone 200 3,930 4 Deron Williams 200 2,939 5 Rodney Hood 200 2,518


THREE-POINTERS MADE IN FIRST THREE SEASONS # PLAYER 3PM 1 Buddy Hield 602 2 Damian Lillard 599 3 Klay Thompson 545 4 Donovan Mitchell 528 5 Kyle Korver 491


RUDY’S ALL-AROUND GAME Rudy Gobert is currently the only player in the NBA to be averaging a point-rebound double-double while also shooting greater than 65 percent from the field.

JAZZ JUMP SHOTS The Utah Jazz lead the NBA in three-point percentage (tied with Miami), shooting 38.3 percent from deep this season. The Jazz are also third in the NBA in field goal percentage at 47.6 percent.

46 FOR 45 On 1/16/20 against the New Orleans Pelicans, Donovan Mitchell poured in 46 points on 16 made field goals, including seven three-pointers. The 46 points ties a career-high for Mitchell, which he also scored last season against Milwaukee on 3/2/19.

BEATING THE BUZZER On 2/10 against the Houston, Bojan Bogdanovic buried a three-pointer at the buzzer to give the Jazz a 114-113 win over Houston. There have been four buzzer beaters this season, with Bogdanovic hitting two of them. Bojan also helped Jazz defeated the Milwaukee Bucks on 11/8 thanks to a heroic three-pointer at the buzzer, giving him 33 points on the evening.

SUPER SECOND ROUNDER Bojan Bogdanović is currently posting 20.5 points per contest, which makes him tied for the second leading scorer in the league for all active players drafted in the second round just behind Spencer Dinwiddie (20.7).

COLORADO CLARKSON On 1/30/20 against the Denver Nuggets, Jordan Clarkson scored made 13 field goals, including seven made three-pointers, on his way to 37 points. This was a season high in scoring for Clarkson and the second highest scoring game off the bench in the NBA this year, trailing only a 42-point effort from Buddy Hield.

4K MITCHELL After putting in 22 points against Memphis on 12/7, Donovan Mitchell eclipsed the 4,000-point mark in his 179th career game. He becomes just the fourth Jazzman to record at least 4,000 points in less than 200 games, joining Adrian Dantley (135 games), Pete Maravich (165 games) and Darrell Griffith (194 games).

RESILIENT JAZZ By completing a comeback victory over the Wizards on 2/28, the Jazz recorded their 14th win of the season after trailing at halftime. This is the second most wins when trailing at half this year behind only the Denver Nuggets (16).

BIG MAN BUCKETS Rudy Gobert is second the NBA in field goal percentage this season, shooting 70.1 percent from the field. This mark is the highest shooting percentage of Gobert’s career.

30-POINT DUO During the 109-102 win against the Orlando Magic on 12/17, Donovan Mitchell and Bojan Bogdanović became the first Jazz duo to each tally 30-point games in a single contest since Carlos Boozer and Deron Williams did so against the Los Angeles Clippers on March 28, 2008.

FRENCHMEN CAN DUNK Rudy Gobert leads the NBA in dunks this season with 205. Giannis Antetokounmpo (174), Mitchell Robinson (172), Jarrett Allen (160) and Anthony Davis (142) round out the top five in dunks.

2019-20 NBA THREE POINT PERCENTAGE LEADERS # TEAM % T-1 Utah Jazz 0.383 T-1 Miami Heat 0.383 3 New Orleans Pelicans 0.373 T-4 Washington Wizards 0.371 T-4 Toronto Raptors 0.371
2ND ROUNDERS PPG PLAYER PPG 1 Khris Middleton 20.7 T-2 Spencer Dinwiddie 20.5 T-2 Bojan Bogdanovic 20.5 T-2 Nikola Jokic 20.5
FASTEST JAZZMEN TO 4,000 POINTS PLAYER GP 1 Adrian Dantley 135 2 Pete Maravich 165 3 Donovan Mitchell 179 4 Darrell Griffith 194
2019-20 NBA FIELD GOAL PERCENTAGE PLAYER FG% 1 Mitchell Robinson 0.734 2 Rudy Gobert 0.701 3 Jarrett Allen 0.645 4 Clint Capela 0.629 5 Brandon Clarke 0.623
2019-20 NBA DUNK LEADERS PLAYER DUNKS 1 Rudy Gobert 205 2 Giannis Antetokounmpo 174 3 Mitchell Robinson 172 4 Jarrett Allen 160 5



Health means options which means decisions for Nurse … Remember Dewan Hernandez? … The Kawhi myth — Toronto Sun

SACRAMENTO — It should be Saturday at the latest that Nick Nurse will have his full complement of players at his disposal.

Health means options which means decisions for Nurse … Remember Dewan Hernandez? … The Kawhi myth — Toronto Sun

SACRAMENTO — It should be Saturday at the latest that Nick Nurse will have his full complement of players at his disposal.

Then it’s an entirely different form of tough for the head coach.

Rather than filling in the gaps, Nurse will be looking to juggle as many as seven deserving starters while trying to keep everyone happy.

Marc Gasol returned to the lineup Sunday after a 15 game-absence that combined with an earlier injury to the same left hamstring has seen him play just 36 of the 63 games so far this season.

Fred VanVleet, who was questionable coming into the Sacramento game will sit out at least one more and probably a second in Utah before making his return on Saturday once the team gets back home.

“I think we probably (give him the extra time) but we’ll see what happens here tonight,” Nurse said of VanVleet’s return date before the game in Sacramento. “He’s really close so he’ll certainly be in once we get back home but we’ll see what happens tonight with everyone.”

The thinking is that with four full days off between Monday’s game in Utah and Saturday’s at home against Detroit, the prudent decision would be to give the guy with the sore shoulder the extra time off rather than bring him back for one.

With Gasol back and Serge Ibaka playing at a very high level, the decision was made to bring Gasol off the bench for Monday’s game but to hear Nurse tell it that decision and a few more are going to be revisited very soon.

Read More

Health means options which means decisions for Nurse … Remember Dewan Hernandez? … The Kawhi myth — Toronto Sun

WOZ BLOG: We’re living in an excellent era for the Raptors — Toronto Sun

SAN FRANCISCO — What a fun era this We the North period has been. As I noted on Twitter: Read More

WOZ BLOG: We’re living in an excellent era for the Raptors — Toronto Sun

SAN FRANCISCO — What a fun era this We the North period has been. As I noted on Twitter:

Toronto Raptors past seven seasons: Seven playoff appearances, 1 title, 2 conference finals. Eight series wins.

Toronto Raptors first 18 seasons: Five playoff appearances, one series win (a best-of-five).

It’s amazing, when you think about just how brutal things were for so long, how everything has changed. Now the Raptors are one of the most respected, successful and profit-making franchises in the entire NBA.

More….

torontosun.com/sports/basketball/nba/toronto-raptors/woz-blog-were-living-in-an-excellent-era-for-the-raptors(opens in a new tab)