Game notes:

  1. Don’t let the final score deceive you. The win was never in doubt as the Raptors led for the final 45 minutes of the game. The pesky Hornets never go away without a fight, and they’ve been a perpetual thorn in the Raptors’ side, but you have to walk out of that game feeling confident about facing Charlotte in a potential playoff series.
  2. Granted, the Hornets were without Nic Batum. He’s a key piece for them on both ends of the floor. But I like the Raptors’ game plan – they made some really strong contests on the perimeter, and took away the paint with Jonas Valanciunas and Bismack Biyombo helping at the rim.
  3. Holding to the Hornets to 36.4 percent shooting from the field was the difference in this game. They only had 59 points through three quarters.
  4. DeMar DeRozan got whatever he wanted against Courtney Lee and Jeremy Lamb. Save for settling on a few midrange shots, DeRozan got into the paint with ease, and finished consistently around the basket since the Hornets have very little rim-protection. Really like that he got 12 free-throw attempts.
  5. I clamored for it last summer: Why did Jeremy Lin only get a 1-year, $2-million?
  6. That looked like the normal Kyle Lowry. Save for those two missed free throws at the end, Lowry looked confident in his jumper – a strong sign given his recent elbow issues. That 32-foot bomb was cool.
  7. Poor game from Norman Powell. He had so much difficulty with Lin working him around pick-and-rolls. Powell is very active, and he’s always giving maximum effort on defense, but he gets jumpy and isn’t always in position or taking the best routes. He’s a rookie, these things will come.
  8. Credit to Marvin Williams from reinventing his image from “UNC bust that was picked ahead of Chris Paul” to “fully actualized version of Harrison Barnes.” Some team is going to wildly overpay Harry B this summer, and whoever settles for Marvin is going to get a really useful player on a decent price.
  9. It bothers me every time Biyombo brings the ball low while gathering himself before going up. It makes it easy for guards to swipe away the ball. I counted at least 3 instances of that this game. He’d have an easier time if he opted for quick layups, instead of trying to dunk every time.
  10. Blue Jays fans: It’s game 3 of the season. Everything will be alright.

One thought on “10 things I saw from Raptors-Hornets

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