Photo Credit: NBA Canada
The Toronto Raptors will face the Atlanta Hawks at Amalie Arena in Tampa on Tuesday night.
Atlanta is fourth in the East with a 29-25 record, winning seven of their last 10 games. They score the 11th most points-per-game in the league with 113.5, and boast the NBA’s 12th best defence, allowing 111.5 points-per-game.
The Hawks are led by star guard Trae Young, averaging 25.4 points-per-game and hitting 36.1 percent of his three-point attempts. Forward John Collins, who was heavily linked with a potential move out of Atlanta ahead of the trade deadline, is also having a strong year. He’s averaging 18.2 points-per-game, 7.8 rebounds, and an impressive 38 percent from beyond the arc on 3.4 attempts-per-game.
Raptors’ deadline acquisition Gary Trent Jr. has been red hot over his last five games, averaging 20 points and knocking down 38.9 percent of his shots from deep. Atlanta is the fifth best team when it comes to defending the three-ball, setting up a good battle with Toronto’s shooters.
While the Hawks have been hot lately, the Raptors have a good chance at securing a win on their makeshift home court against an undermanned Atlanta squad, with a handful of starters and rotation players likely to miss the game due to injury. Trae Young is questionable to play, while Danilo Gallinari is listed as doubtful. Tony Snell, John Collins, De’Andre Hunter, Cam Reddish and Kris Dunn will all be out.
Nick Nurse will once again be without Fred VanVleet and Jalen Harris, while Paul Watson Jr. is listed as questionable.
Atlanta has controlled the season series against Toronto so far this season, winning the two previous meetings 132-121 and 121-120, the latter coming from a heartbreaking Tony Snell buzzer beater.
The Raptors will look to avoid a season series sweep to the Hawks when they tip off at 7:30 PM EST on Tuesday night.