Toronto Raptors: Whose stock is rising/falling, plus Kawhi takes Texas

Toronto Raptors - Kyle Lowry (Photo by Tim Warner/Getty Images)
Toronto Raptors - Kyle Lowry (Photo by Tim Warner/Getty Images) /
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Toronto Raptors
Toronto Raptors – Serge Ibaka (Photo by Tim Warner/Getty Images) /

Serge Ibaka – Stock Down

Serge looks pretty relaxed hanging on the rim, there. Doesn’t he?

Unfortunately, that’s as comfortable as the night got for Serge. He was outscored, outrebounded and downright outplayed by Kenneth Faried all night. Ibaka totaled a double-double but it felt empty, his defense was lackluster at the best of times and was tormented in the pick-and-roll game. Ibaka didn’t know whether to drop off and allow the floater or to blitz Harden when he did blitz Faried was wide open for an easy lay-up or dunk.

It feels like Ibaka has a tendency to switch off when the Raptors need him the most, or maybe he just becomes overwhelmed by the moment. His shot was falling fairly comfortably, he shot 50-percent on 5-10 shooting, including a couple of big offensive rebounds. But the Raptors were always chasing in the game and they needed a little bit more from Ibaka, who fouled out late in the fourth quarter following an intentional reach-in foul on James Harden.

Ibaka made a little bit more of an impact against Dallas, but again it felt like he was holding back a little. He had his fourth successive double-double, it should be noted that it is a relief to see him more committed to pulling down rebounds, considering he’s only averaging 7.6 on the season. His defense was a lot more active too, Ibaka went double zeroes on steals and blocks against the Rockets but increased his tally by infinity against the Mavericks. His two blocks and lone steal were much needed, as the Mavericks mounted a comeback following the total collapse of the Raptors offense in the third.

As long as Lowry is getting Ibaka to his sweet spot, he’ll continue to knock down his midrange jumper, but sometimes we just need a little bit more umph on the offense end of the court.

Stock down, Ibaka was less than satisfactory.