10 things from Raptors-Magic Game 2

Jose Verdugo
Abril 17, 2019

The Raps, who had only used nine players on Saturday, were able to empty the bench this time and get all the reserves in to finish the game.

Pierce, a former National Basketball Association player turned analyst, called Kyle Lowry of the Toronto Raptors a "regular season player" after he scored zero points in the Raptors' shocking 104-101 loss to the Orlando Magic in Game 1 of their first round playoff matchup. He said that when the Raptors had a late timeout on Saturday night and the game tied at 101, Lowry was still an option.

Four - Encouragement: Even by Toronto standards, this was an outstanding crowd, and they were determined to cheer on their point guard.

"I got the ball in some decent spots in the post a few times and they double-teamed me early", Vucevic said. Many of his teammates have said that in various ways over the past 48 hours, backing him up after his Game 1 goose egg, and providing the proper antidote to the anxious who were ready to hand the starting job to VanVleet in his stead.

The Raptors 12-point halftime lead doubled to 24 heading into the fourth quarter, essentially icing the game for the home team. Orlando coach Steve Clifford told reporters that Lowry was terrific and "put a ton of pressure on us". "I've just gotta figure it out, find a way to be more aggressive and more efficient offensively". "Not good, he was terrific", Clifford said. He's the one who starts their transition, all those advance passes up the court to [Pascal] Siakam, that's all him, and he took seven shots and didn't make them. That proved to be true as the Raptors were swept, but Pierce's history of you-know-what disturbing when it comes to Lowry and the team he plays for can't be ignored while reflecting on what he said Monday. His impact on the game was terrific for them. If Siakam can continue to win the battle at both ends of the floor, Toronto gains a massive edge in this series.

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Kawhi Leonard's playing time will be a storyline of Game 2. Lowry had missed all his threes on the night, majority as wide open as could be on a floor occupied by nine other large humans, and Nurse, a rookie National Basketball Association coach in his first playoff game, was thinking about putting the outcome in the hands of his ice-cold point guard?

Leonard, who'd been expected to crank his game up a notch when the playoffs tipped off, was brilliant on Tuesday, drawing delighted gasps from the sold-out Scotiabank Arena crowd of 19,964, and when he drew a foul for a three-point play in a third quarter in which he mercilessly punished the Magic, the crowd chanted "M-V-P!" The Magic were outscored 52-36 in the paint.

The Magic could not get closer than 10 points, and when Siakam made a dunk after a Marc Gasol steal, the Raptors led by 14 points with 2:56 to play in the second quarter.

Nurse said the 33 minutes wasn't by design. Danny Green gave the obligatory Kyle-does-all-the-little-things observation on Monday, and then said this about his scoreless night: "That's the life of a shooter", he said. "Yeah, I looked at it too and thought we should have had him out there a little bit more. I think once I go back through [the game], it wasn't by design to play under 35 minutes or any of that kind of stuff".

It's your turn to show you can pick up the Magic like Toronto's fans picked up the Raptors on Tuesday night. "So it wasn't like we took great advantage of anything". It's going to be a fun game for sure. "We're going to see their best, I assume, so we have to prepare for it". His passing - which was never an issue in the first game of the series as he finished with eight assists - remained a strength as he dished out four assists in the first two quarters.

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