Miraculous Comeback Helps Raptors Shock Pacers to Win 12th Straight
How can you not just love this team?
After losing Kawhi Leonard and Danny Green over the Summer. After all the injuries that this team has been dealt. The Toronto Raptors are 37-14, the best mark through 51-games in franchise history. Moreover, on this night, the Raptors set a new record by winning their 12th consecutive game.
Against all odds, the Raptors overcame a double digit lead in the waning minutes of the fourth quarter by reverting to trap defense, hitting clutch shot after clutch shot, and out-hustling a team that believed the game was all but over.
“We play 48 minutes,” said Raptors guard Kyle Lowry, who finished the night with 32 points, 10 dimes and eight boards. “That’s how we play. We give ourselves a chance.”
Leading the late charge was Lowry, but behind a tenacious defensive push, the Raptors were able to overcome a hungry Pacers team. Coming up big down the stretch was the duo of Pascal Siakam, who poured in 25 points and nine rebounds, and Serge Ibaka who added 30 points of his own, including a three-pointer to give the Raptors the 119-118 lead and eventual win.
“We’ve said this before during this win streak: we haven’t played great all the time but we keep finding a way and that’s a heck of a characteristic to have,” said head coach Nick Nurse. “Tonight we weren’t very good and they were very good, I give them credit. They were awesome, they were cutting and flying and moving and hustling and guarding and all the things you can be and they were trying to knock us out and we wouldn’t quite go away and luckily we hung in there and pulled one off.”
The Raptors will take on the Pacers again on Friday, but things can look quite different by then as the NBA’s trade deadline is coming up tomorrow afternoon. While things have been quiet on the Raptors front, things can definitely change in a heartbeat.
“I think it gives you a sense of like, where you’re going,” Nurse said. “Where’s your vision and thoughts and all that stuff take you immediately. Right now, I’m doing the best I can to coach these guys to a maximum place. And there’s some long-term vision in that.
“If that gets changed at all come three o’clock tomorrow then you start planning that through and making those adjustments. And if it doesn’t, then I think you really start zeroing in a little bit on on the next 30, 28, 29 whatever games it is left.”
At 37-14, the Raptors have shown that they are still legitimate contenders. Now, it is Masai Ujiri who is on the clock.