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2018/19 Raptors Power Rankings Thread

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  • #16
    October 29 - November 4:


    ESPN (2) [-]:
    http://www.espn.com/nba/story/_/id/2...s-ahead-week-4

    Kawhi Leonard has yet to play in back-to-back games this season, as the Raptors are determined to exercise caution with their prized offseason acquisition. Toronto is now 2-1 without Leonard, including a shellacking of the Lakers at Staples Center on Sunday night ahead of Monday's matchup at Utah. If the dominant Raptors are looking for some self-improvement, they can start on the defensive glass, where they're currently a bottom-five team. -- Arnovitz

    NBA.com (4) [-3]:
    http://www.nba.com/powerrankings/201...=powerrankings

    The Raptors lost the game between the league's last two unbeaten teams and then lost Kawhi Leonard to a foot injury. (Hopefully, team and player remain on the same page in regard to that.) But they handled the Sixers in their first meeting on Tuesday and are 2-0 on their four-game trip, having blasted the Lakers out of the gates (they led 41-10 with a little more than two minutes to go in the first quarter) on Sunday. Kyle Lowry leads the league in assists (11.6 per game) by a wide margin and he's had almost twice as many assists to Serge Ibaka (34) as he's to any other teammate (next is 18 to Pascal Siakam). Ibaka had a rough 2018 postseason, but appears much more comfortable as a full-time center (he's played less than a minute with Jonas Valanciunas), shooting 57 percent after a 15-for-17 performance in L.A. He has shot 78 percent in the restricted area, where 38 percent of his shots have come from. That latter rate isn't a career-high, but it's up from just 18 percent over the previous two seasons.

    CBS Sports (2) [-]:
    https://www.cbssports.com/nba/powerrankings/

    The Raptors have been extra cautious with Kawhi Leonard. He sat out Sunday night against the Lakers with a sore left foot, meaning he has sat for three of his first 10 games as a Raptor. It didn't matter; the Raptors blew out the Lakers on the Lakers' home court. The Raptors' starting unit has been absolutely dynamite all season long.


    SI (2) [-1]:
    https://www.si.com/nba/2018/11/05/nb...damian-lillard

    With or without Kawhi Leonard this team is good. With Kawhi they are the second-best team in the NBA right now. Without him, they can still go on the road and run the Lakers out of Staples Center through three quarters.

    We got cheated out of seeing Kawhi vs. Giannis on Monday, but watching the two-time Defensive Player of the Year turn Ben Simmons into a walking turnover machine was a decent substitute. The more and more Leonard gets to leave his imprint on this unit, the scarier Toronto gets on that end. As teammates learn how to better work off the guy who can create steals with his back turned, forcing turnovers and closing possessions will be even easier.

    On the other end of the court, Kyle Lowry has his hands on everything and is setting the tempo. His league-high 11.6 assists per game are about four more than his career-high, and with the way this offense is scoring and how effortless it is for them to jump into transition makes it seem possible he will finish with double-digit helpers.

    Nick Nurse will likely need to lighten up Danny Greenís minutes as the season goes on, but the time being, his floor spacing and experience are major bonuses.

    Comment


    • #17
      Was about to take exception with NBA.com but that is a pretty good top 4. Still, I'd put the Raptors #2. I'd take this team (with Kawhi) over the Bucks or Nuggets.
      "We're playing in a building." -- Kawhi Leonard

      Comment


      • #18

        Comment


        • #19
          Nilanka wrote: View Post

          The Raptors were always better than the celtics. Last year, this year...to be the man, you gotta beat the man, you can't just pass us "on paper"
          It's Klaw Season. Time to hunt.

          Comment


          • #20
            We're Number One!

            http://www.espn.com/nba/story/_/id/2...s-ahead-week-5

            Is Masai Ujiri the mayor of Toronto yet?

            It was an undefeated week for the 12-1 Raptors, who haven't won a game by fewer than seven points since the first week of the season. One among many promising notes for Toronto: No matter which combination of forwards and big men head coach Nick Nurse assembles around Kyle Lowry, Danny Green and Kawhi Leonard, the Raps are decimating the competition. No other three-man unit in the league with more than 200 minutes has outperformed this Raps' winning trio. -- Arnovitz
            This one too:

            http://www.nba.com/powerrankings
            Last edited by S.R.; Mon Nov 12th, 2018, 11:55 AM.
            "We're playing in a building." -- Kawhi Leonard

            Comment


            • #21
              November 5-11:


              ESPN (1) [+1]:
              http://www.espn.com/nba/story/_/id/2...s-ahead-week-5

              It was an undefeated week for the 12-1 Raptors, who haven't won a game by fewer than seven points since the first week of the season. One among many promising notes for Toronto: No matter which combination of forwards and big men head coach Nick Nurse assembles around Kyle Lowry, Danny Green and Kawhi Leonard, the Raps are decimating the competition. No other three-man unit in the league with more than 200 minutes has outperformed this Raps' winning trio. -- Arnovitz


              NBA.com (1) [+3]:
              http://www.nba.com/powerrankings/201...=powerrankings

              The Raptors cruised through a 4-0 trip out West (none of the wins were within five points in the last five minutes) and took care of business against the Knicks on Saturday afternoon. Pascal Siakam has begun to realize his potential to become an every-day problem for Toronto opponents. He's averaged 17.6 points on 68 percent shooting over the last seven games (highlighted by a career-high 23 points on Saturday), doing a lot more than just playing off the Raptors' two All-Stars. He was torching the Kings so badly in the first half on Wednesday (attacking Nemanja Bjelica in transition, spinning on Marvin Bagley in the post, and beating Bagley off the dribble), they were forced to double-team him in the post.


              CBS Sports (2) [-]:
              https://www.cbssports.com/nba/news/n...est-surprises/

              The renaissance and reinvention of Serge Ibaka, who has primarily been playing the five, has been one of the biggest reasons the Raptors feel like the team most likely to topple the Warriors' dominance. Ibaka is second on the Raptors in scoring, averaging 17.2 points per game, which would be a career high. Ibaka's done his damage closest to the rim, leaving three-point shooting to teammates. He's shooting fewer threes than any season since 2013-14.


              SI (1) [+1]:
              https://www.si.com/nba/2018/11/12/nb...-stephen-curry

              The league's second-highest shooting percentage and third-highest scoring offense belong to Toronto.

              The addition of Kawhi Leonard is what gives this team such a great shot to get out the East. The evolution of Kyle Lowry and the bench, however, is what gives the Raptors a real chance at bringing home the title. In addition to Lowry and Leonard, there are four other Raptors averaging at least 10 points a game, and Fred VanVleet and OG Anunoby are just a tick below that mark. Pascal Siakamís major jump has been another key factor in this early-season showing. Itís a shame you canít win titles in November.

              Comment


              • #22
                I swear every time this team hits a peak in the power rankings they drop a dud the next week.
                "We're playing in a building." -- Kawhi Leonard

                Comment


                • #23
                  S.R. wrote: View Post
                  I swear every time this team hits a peak in the power rankings they drop a dud the next week.

                  Comment


                  • #24
                    golden wrote: View Post

                    F*ck Daryl Morey!
                    "We're playing in a building." -- Kawhi Leonard

                    Comment


                    • #25
                      golden wrote: View Post

                      The Raptors breaking up record winning streaks for the Rockets TWICE that season after that tweet was delightful.
                      twitter.com/dhackett1565

                      Comment


                      • #26
                        S.R. wrote: View Post
                        F*ck Daryl Morey!
                        Ujiri >
                        It's Klaw Season. Time to hunt.

                        Comment


                        • #27
                          May I never see the Raptors ranked #1across the board again. It's bad juju.
                          "We're playing in a building." -- Kawhi Leonard

                          Comment


                          • #28
                            It was nice being at the top for a minute. If GSW has a mini implosion with the KD vs. DG drama then Raptors should have more opportunities to get back to the top.

                            Comment


                            • #29
                              Still #1 on ESPN! Wow. Can't pull everything together like PlanetMars does though, so I'll leave that to him. Lol

                              The Raptors took out their frustrations from their three-game losing streak -- including an excruciating overtime loss at Boston on Friday -- on a hapless Chicago team on Saturday. The numbers during the skid are downright weird. Toronto sported the third-least efficient defense over the streak, yet ranked second defensively in opponent shot quality. Victims of bad luck? Whatever the case, it's a get-well tour for the Raps this week: road dates at Orlando and Atlanta, followed by home games versus Washington and Miami. -- Arnovitz
                              http://www.espn.com/nba/story/_/id/2...s-ahead-week-6

                              Comment


                              • #30
                                Joey wrote: View Post
                                Still #1 on ESPN! Wow. Can't pull everything together like PlanetMars does though, so I'll leave that to him. Lol
                                ESPN is right, though. There was an element of bad luck in all our losses. Pistons (Stanley Johnson) and Pelicans (Moore) were making crazy shots. Kawhi dribbling off his foot. Danny Green leaving before crunch time in 2 games. Rash of injuries.

                                One thing that is clear reading the post-game quotes is that opposing teams are extremely focused when playing us and are calling games against the Raps "statement games". We are officially the hunted.

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