What the media is saying about the Toronto Raptors: Title chances and more

Toronto Raptors - Kyle Lowry (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
Toronto Raptors - Kyle Lowry (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images) /

Even though playoff seeding is still very much up in the air, the media is feasting on potential match-ups and playoff predictions. Here’s what the US Media had to say about the Toronto Raptors chances and that of their rivals.

As the playoffs approach, there’s an abundance of articles focusing on playoff match-ups, who might shine in the second season and what each team’s chances are. We focus on a few outlets and what they have to say about the Toronto Raptor’s biggest threats and their team’s present situation including injuries and predictions.

Nationally, several outlets have begun to evaluate who might break out and shine this spring. Pascal Siakam has been the focus of several websites so we’ve highlighted a few of them for you. The Raptors are also getting some praise from some credible sources in terms of how deep they may go and where they may find some success.

Finally, we give you the latest Power Rankings from south of the border and where the Raptors sit in the final weeks of the regular season.


The Milwaukee Bucks have been hit with the injury bug. Hard. Injuries to star point guard Malcolm Brogdon, Nikola Mirotic and Tony Snell have Bucks fans concerned about lineup depth come playoff time. The Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel breaks down the Bucks injuries and how it may affect them come playoff time.

"Malcolm Brogdon (right foot plantar fascia tear) will be out until at least the second round of the playoffs, which could also be the case for Pau Gasol (left foot soreness). The team hopes Tony Snell (left foot sprain) and Nikola Mirotic (fractured and sprained left thumb) will be back by the time the playoffs start April 13 while rookie Donte DiVincenzo has been shut down due to bilateral heel bursitis in his right foot."

The Sixers have their own injury concerns. All-Star centre Joel Embiid has been sidelined for the current three-game road trip with tendonitis in his left knee. The left knee has cost Embiid 10 games since the All-Star Break. With injuries and illnesses forcing the Sixers to be unable to man a full line-up, can the Sixers find their groove in time for the playoffs? Keith Pompey of the Philadelphia Inquirer examines whether the Sixers injuries might cost Philadelphia in the playoffs.

"After Saturday, the Sixers will have just six games to find a rhythm heading into the playoffs. Embiid will probably miss at least one more game during a back-to-back set at the end of the season, at Miami and at home against the Bulls."

The Detroit Free Press breaks down the playoff hunt for their Pistons and predicts where the rest of the East will land come playoff time. Raptors fans, who have seen Dwane Casey take care of business when playing his former team, might be interested to see who they predict will be Detroit’s first-round opponent will be.


Clearly, the Golden State Warriors are favourites once again to win a championship. But are they more vulnerable than in previous years? Might this be the year that we see a new champ? A couple of US media sources think the Raptors have as good a chance as anyone.

The Bleacher Report has them as the odds-on favourite to take down the champs.

"They’re already a contender, like those before them, but injuries and turnover from last year suggest they’ve yet to hit their stride. They may not peak until the playoffs. And more than that, they have the roster makeup to match the Warriors rotation, in all its many forms."

Stephen A Smith of ESPN agrees.

"“They have experience. They have perimeter shooting. They have length. They have athleticism. They have depth. And they have somebody with the ability to close in Kawhi Leonard who’s an experienced championship tested commodity.”"

Smith concedes that the injuries to Milwaukee have vaulted the Raps into the top contender to threaten the W’s, and if healthy, the Bucks might be the bigger threat. But for now, the Raps have his vote based on the combination of factors that no other team has. Buckle up Raptor fans. It’s going to be an exciting playoff.

It seems as though every other week, another pundit sings the praises of Pascal Siakam and his breakout season. This week, a couple of sources have him as a player to watch these playoffs. Dan Devine of The Ringer has Siakam as an x-factor this year and quite possibly the reason the Raps go beyond where they’ve ever gone before.

"“Now, we’re wondering whether Siakam’s two-way game might be the key to the Raptors finally breaking out of the Eastern Conference and having a real shot at a championship.”"

The Ringer agrees in their latest piece: Can Pascal Siakam Help End Toronto’s Postseason Curse? Raptors fans won’t find too much new information in this piece as they break down Siakam’s game, where he’s come from and some of his highlights from this season. Where fans might be interested is how more and more writers, including this one, feel Siakam may be able to spin a series in Toronto’s favour.

Power Rankings

SI has the Raptors at the seven spot, one up from last week’s eight ranking. Curiously, the Blazers, Jazz, and Clippers are all ahead of Toronto. Milwaukee retains the top spot.

Next. Why the Raptors can beat anyone in the Eastern Conference. dark

NBA.com has the Raptors at number four this week, up one spot from last week. The Raptors were able to take care of business last week against weaker opponents while managing to get some much-needed rest to key players.