Toronto Raptors

April 16, 2019 10:43 pm

Rick Zamperin: Toronto Raptors show what they’re really made of

Toronto Raptors forward Kawhi Leonard (2) holds the ball as Orlando Magic forward Aaron Gordon (00) defends during first half NBA basketball playoff action in Toronto on Tuesday, April 16, 2019.


All is well again in the north.

After a worrisome showing in Game 1 of the NBA playoffs, the Toronto Raptors started the second game of their series against Orlando like a dog on a bone and never let up.

Toronto roared out to an 11-0 lead before the Magic scored their first bucket of the game 4:45 into the contest at Scotiabank Arena and went on to smash Orlando 111-82 to even the series at 1-1.

And hey, Raptors guard Kyle Lowry actually got on the scoresheet after he posted a big fat zero in their series opening loss. In fact, Lowry played one of his best games of the year— scoring 22 points and adding seven assists — while Kawhi Leonard was a beast, scoring a game-high 37 points.

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So why was Game 2 so different than the curtain raiser? The Raptors played with an intensity that we haven’t seen this season and the Magic simply could not match it.

Toronto’s intensity on defence led to a more aggressive mindset on offence, and vice versa. Their success on the offensive side of the ball fed the Raps’ frenzied approach on their end of the court.

READ MORE: Nurse takes some blame for Lowry’s shooting

This was the Raptors team that we all expected to see in Game 1 and that fans want to see for the remainder of the playoffs.

And if Toronto can keep their intensity as high as their talent level they will rack up many more playoff wins.

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