Somebody dial 9-1-1 and grab the extinguishers: the team north of the border is ON FIRE! The Toronto Raptors are first place in the Atlantic Division. This is the longest streak in franchise history that the team has held the top spot in their division and they show no signs of slowing down.
The Raptors are carrying their momentum into the month of March, having won 4 of their last 5 games. The loss in that streak came in the longest game in Raptors history when they lost a thriller against Washington in triple overtime. This was hardly a bump in the road for the Canada’s team as the surging offense and rock solid “D” have been working in a consistent tandem to provide fans with shut-down, high scoring ball.
The team is being carried by…well…the whole team. The guards have been unbelievable and the bigs have been rock solid. Kyle Lowry and DeMar DeRozan are shooting lights out and spreading the ball around the court with ease. The boards are being scooped up with vigor by Jonas Valenciunas and Amir Johnson. Terrence Ross, Greivis Vasquez, and Tyler Hansbrough have provided incredible contribution all over the court.
One of the most pleasant surprises at this point of the season is Patrick Patterson. Patterson, who was acquired in the Rudy Gay trade with the Sacramento Kings in November has been a beast off the bench since the All-Star break. He takes some of the pressure off of Johnson and Valenciunas by playing aggressively in the paint at both ends of the court. With so many big men snatching up boards, it’s no wonder the team has had such great results.
This Friday marks the return of Rudy Gay to the ACC for the first time since the blockbuster deal with the Kings. It is a highly anticipated matchup as Gay will, no doubt, be looking to have an incredible night. The Raptors will look to continue to do what they do best down the stretch: Play in-your-face defense and fast-break ball. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it, right?