Raptors 132 – Knicks 105: Piling up the points

Toronto Raptors - Serge Ibaka (Photo by Jesse D. Garrabrant/NBAE via Getty Images)
Toronto Raptors - Serge Ibaka (Photo by Jesse D. Garrabrant/NBAE via Getty Images) /

The Raptors weren’t expected to have much difficulty subduing the Knicks. While New York was feisty early, they had no answer for Toronto’s second unit and balanced scoring.

The Toronto Raptors rolled into New York to try to extend a 7-game against a Knicks team in a terrible (1-14! ouch) tailspin. While pulling away took a bit longer than we might have liked, there’s no denying the result. Toronto was able to shrug off a poor shooting afternoon from DeMar DeRozan by getting points from everyone else. The Raptors, ahead by eight at the half, destroyed the Knicks in the final two quarters.

NEW YORK, NY – MARCH 11: Pascal Siakam
NEW YORK, NY – MARCH 11: Pascal Siakam /

Sometimes, you wonder the detective’s question: Did he fall, or was he pushed? In the hoops context, I’m questioning whether Toronto’s offense was that strong and consistent (the Raptors never scored fewer than 30 points in any quarter, and won all four), or were the Knicks uninterested or incapable in defending?

You want balanced scoring…?

Here’s some remarkable stats from a convincing victory: Jonas Valanciunas led the scoring parade – with 17. I lead with that to give you a clear picture of how everyone got in on the act. Toronto had thirteen players hit the floor, and only Lucas Nogueira failed to score (or to take a shot, for that matter). Eight players made at least one 3-ball, and seven scored in double digits. While Pascal Siakam wasn’t one of those, falling just short with nine, he racked up six assists. His handle has improved so that he’s trusted to bring the ball up the floor on occasion.

More from Raptors Rapture

The Knicks’ only serious rim protector is Enes Kanter, but he didn’t dress due to back spasms. Luke Kornet jumped center, but he’s more Steve Novak than Steven Adams (that’s not an knock; Kornet has a future as a stretch-5, but lacks the strength to battle our people under the hoop). As a result, the Raptors’ mobile big men, JV, Serge Ibaka and Jakob Poeltl, were able to crash the boards with little opposition. Toronto won the rebounding battle 52-37, and also connected for 56 paint points, compared to the Knicks’ 48.

It turned into a laugher

We were intrigued during garbage time to see Nigel Hayes enter the game. He provided some moments of levity for the Raptors’ bench by draining both long balls he tried. Following his second make from the corner, he gestured some smack towards the Knicks. Perhaps he can be forgiven, because he was hiding in plain sight all year at their Westchester G League affiliate and not called up. Even so, coach Dwane Casey whispered in his ear at a timeout, no doubt saying something like “You’re only on a 10-day contract with us. Don’t burn your bridges, young man.” Sound advice…

NEW YORK, NY – MARCH 11: Jonas Valanciunas
NEW YORK, NY – MARCH 11: Jonas Valanciunas /

It was a fun afternoon in New York for our team. They get to stay in the Big Apple, as they only have to head across town to face their next opponent, the Brooklyn Nets, on Tuesday night.