Photo Credit: Raptors Twitter
The Raptors woes continue as they dropped their fourth consecutive game and ninth straight away from home. With both teams missing several key players tonight, the Thunder took advantage of a Raptors team that turned ice cold in the second half, winning 113-103.
Toronto was without Kyle Lowry tonight, who was held out with a right foot infection, and will remain out for the next week or so, while the Thunder played without their top four scorers this season. Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, Luguentz Dort, and Darius Bazley were all held out due to injury while Al Horford, their second leading scorer, has been shut down and will be rested for the remainder of the year.
The Raptors got off to a hot start offensively, scoring 67 points in the first half, and leading by eight at the break. Gary Trent Jr. provided a spark in the first half, recording 20 points on 80% shooting from the field. He carried much of Toronto’s offence tonight as the Raptors shot 39% as a team.
Trent Jr. was one of the lone bright spots for Toronto tonight as he scored a game and career-high 31 points, outscoring his combined total from his first three games with the team. Trent was making an impact on both sides of the ball, hitting on a three point shot to give the Raptors the lead heading into the fourth quarter.
The Thunder outscored the Raptors 54-36 in the second half and dominated Toronto with their size, finishing +29 in rebounds and +10 in points in the paint. The two young Thunder centers, Moses Brown and Isaiah Roby combined for 37 points and 22 rebounds, while both shooting over 50% from the field. In comparison, Aaron Baynes and Pascal Siakam combined for a total of nine rebounds.
Thunder guard Svi Mykhailiuk scored a season high 22, while also making four shots from beyond the arc, helping the Thunder complete the comeback in the fourth quarter.
Despite Gary Trent Jr.’s career night, the Raptors continue to struggle in two key areas; defence and their play in the paint. After a 1-13 March, the Raptors will look forward to the flip of the calendar and a four-game homestand which begins on Friday against the Golden State Warriors. Tip-off is scheduled for 7:00PM EST on Sportsnet.