The Toronto Raptors may have walked away with a win, but it was a nailbiting first three quarters. This game was in doubt until the 4th quarter when the defensive intensity picked up and shut down the Philadelphia 76ers. The Raptors announcing crew of Matt Devlin and Jack Armstrong were taking the 4th quarter to talk triple-doubles, as Kyle Lowry ending the game with 18 points, 13 assists and 10 rebounds.
This exceptional 4th quarter defensive effort came primarily from Patrick Patterson, John Salmons, and Chuck Hayes (yes that’s the bench). This effort is nice to watch as the Raptors have had quite the sub-par bench for the past few years. Matt and Jack touched on the fact that the Raptors have the best 4th quarter defense of any team in the league in terms of shooting percentage. This has allowed the Raptors to come back in many games (such as Wednesday against Dallas) or in this tight game, pull away from the 76ers. Kyle Lowry and DeMar DeRozan finished the game with Patterson, Salmons and Hayes. The 76ers managed to cut into the lead late by applying full court pressure, but were unable to cut through the great defensive effort from our Raptors squad.
Some stand outs from the game: Lowry’s triple-double, 7 assists from Greivis Vasquez, Patterson and Hayes with 8 Rebounds each, with DeRozan scoring 34 points and getting to the line 16 times, making 13. This was a much needed road win to break the losing streak on the road and keep the momentum rolling forward to try to win the Atlantic Division and the 3rd playoff seeding.