Rough Start

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Horrid Second Half Shooting Proves to be Raptors Downfall in Loss

Well, that probably wasn’t how you drew up the start of the Toronto Raptors season.

Wednesday night was a tale of two halves as the Raptors came out strong in the first two quarters but failed to close their season opener out with what was a horrifying shooting second half performance. Meanwhile, the upstart New Orleans Pelicans came alive in Tampa Bay, catching fire en route to a 113-99 victory.

“Lots of things go into making the game exciting,” said Raptors head coach Nick Nurse. “But this is one of ’em that’s at the top of the list is when you gotta try to game plan and prepare and figure out what you can do with these guys.

“It’s the first time with [Williamson], so we do a lot of studying and looking and throwing ideas up there and taking some down and putting other ones up and trying to figure out what we think may work. Then you go to B and C and D and E, usually, with guys like this. It’s really fun and an awesome part of what I do for a living, for me.”

In what was otherwise a forgettable performance, the Raptors can draw some clear positives.

Pascal Siakam got his season off on the right foot, scoring 20 points on 8-of-17 shooting, while grabbing down eight boards. Kyle Lowry also finished with an 18-point double-double. Chris Boucher put up some nice numbers off the bench, while it was good to see Norman Powell on the floor after his experiences with COVID-19 – more so because he was healthy than anything else.

In what was a short offseason and an abbreviated preseason, it is understandable that a team can go cold from long range, but with that in mind it is important to remember that the Raptors still have plenty of proven shooters.

Only one of 72 and with that, it’s onto the next one!

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