Why Game 3 is a Must-Win for the Toronto Raptors

Why Game 3 is a Must-Win for the Toronto Raptors

NBA

Why Game 3 is a Must-Win for the Toronto Raptors

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Heading into Game 3 of the 2019 NBA Finals, the Toronto Raptors are feeling the heat.

After winning Game 1 and leading by five at halftime of Game 2, the Raptors completely unraveled. They couldn’t buy a basket and looked helpless as the Warriors took the lead early in the third quarter and never looked back. Golden State outscored Toronto 34-21 in the third, which marks the only quarter of the game in which they had an advantage over Toronto. This happened in the midst of Kevin Durant’s absence and with Klay Thompson exiting the game in the fourth quarter with a hamstring injury.

For the Raptors, tonight presents their best chance of defeating an injury-riddled Warriors team that will soon be back to full strength. However, if they let it squander again, the Warriors’ quest for a three-peat will likely be fulfilled.

Entering tonight’s game, Kevon Looney is officially out for the series, Durant is out, and Thompson is listed as questionable, although it is expected by many that he will play.

With the Warriors as injury-riddled as they have been all season, tonight is the perfect opportunity for the Raptors to steal a game on the road. It’s all but becoming a guarantee that Kawhi Leonard will post 25-plus points per game. However, it’s his supporting cast that is integral towards the Raptors’ success.

In Game 2, Pascal Siakam struggled immensely down low, shooting a dismal 5-for-18 from the field for 12 points while adding eight rebounds and five assists. Kyle Lowry also struggled, shooting 4-for-11 from the field for 13 points. Lowry, who’s known as the best distributor for the Raptors, got into foul trouble early and only recorded two assists. This is unacceptable from a player who averaged 8.7 assists per game on the season. Lowry needs to stay out of foul trouble tonight and be the facilitator he’s proven himself to be.

With Durant out and Thompson banged-up, the Raptors have no excuses. They must take the series lead before Durant and Thompson are back at full strength. If not, the series is all but over for the team in the North.

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