Barnes’ double-double propels Raptors past Knicks in Summer League opener

Photo Credit: Garrett Elwood/Getty Images NBAE

The Toronto Raptors beat the New York Knicks 89-79 in their opening game of the 2021 NBA Summer League.

Fourth-overall pick Scottie Barnes impressed in his professional debut, scoring 18 points, grabbing 10 boards and dishing out five assists. Malachi Flynn led Toronto in scoring with 23 points on 8-of-13 shooting, including three successful field-goals from deep. Matt Morgan notched 11 points with some hot three-point shooting, while Freddie Gillespie secured a game-high 13 rebounds.

The Knicks’ veterans led the way for New York, with second-year players Obi Toppin and Immanuel Quickley carrying the load offensively with a total of 39 points between them. Rookie center Jericho Sims scored 12 points and recorded eight rebounds, while also providing viewers with the highlight of the afternoon.

R.I.P Freddie G.

The Scottie Barnes-era started off with him lining up for the tip-off, winning it back to a teammate, and then picking it up to run the offence on the opening possession. Versatility for days.

The game got off to a rocky start, with both teams looking shaky and anxious in the opening possessions. Toronto gave up several turnovers in the half-court, most notably coming from the hands of 2021 second-round pick Dalano Banton. He ended the afternoon with a game-high five turnovers.

Second-year guard Malachi Flynn took control of the game early on, making a multitude of shots and leading the Raptors on a 8-0 run.

Toronto grew their lead in the second quarter, executing on the offensive end and getting stops defensively. New York’s poor three-point shooting spelled their demise, as they relied too heavily on it despite the lack of success. They made only 7-of-40 of their three-point attempts, while the Raptors shot a solid 42.5 per cent from deep.

Barnes also made his presence felt on the defensive end, locking down the Knick’s ball-handlers and getting in passing lanes. He added two steals and a block to his strong debut, giving Raptors’ fans a glimpse into his renowned all-around play.

Toronto continues its Summer League campaign on Wednesday, when they face the Golden State Warriors in Las Vegas. Catch the action on TSN at 8PM EST.

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