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The Raptors are home on the second night of a back-to-back, as they welcome the Eastern Conference leading Brooklyn Nets to Amalie Arena. The two teams will meet for the second time in the span of a week after Pascal Siakam and OG Anunoby led Toronto to a 114-103 victory last Wednesday.
Despite a rather terrible month of March (1-13), the Raptors have won five of their last six and five straight home games, following the 112-96 win over the Cavaliers yesterday. Recent talks of tanking have been crushed as Toronto finds themselves just one game back of the Wizards for the tenth seed, even at a record of 26-35.
The 41-20 Brooklyn Nets boast one of the top offences in the league led by their talented trio of superstars. Brooklyn ranks near the top of nearly every offensive category, best in the NBA in field goal percentage (49%) and second in points per game (118.8). The Nets remain betting favourites as they try to attain their first NBA title, and should be sparked tonight with the return of Kevin Durant.
After missing three games, Durant scored 33 off the bench in a win over Phoenix on Sunday. He should be in the lineup tonight as he hopes to play his first full game against Toronto since tearing his Achilles in the 2019 Finals. Durant missed the matchup last week, while he played 19 minutes back in February before being taken out during a bizarre game where he was allowed to play but then forced to leave due to Health and Safety protocols.
Toronto was able to hold the Nets to 39% shooting as a team on Wednesday and will hope to repeat that success tonight. Siakam has scored 20 points or more in all but one game this month, while Anunoby continues to display his growth with his fourth consecutive 20 point game last night.
James Harden is out for the Nets, while Chris Boucher remains sidelined for the Toronto Raptors. The status of Gary Trent Jr. will be questionable after missing last night’s game due to a leg injury.
With just 11 games left in the season, the Raptors enter a crucial stretch, playing their next three games against three of the top four teams in the league, starting tonight against the Nets. Tip-off is set for 7:30PM EST on Sportsnet.