Five most anticipated games for the Toronto Raptors in 2019

Toronto Raptors - Marc Gasol (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)
Toronto Raptors - Marc Gasol (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images) /
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Toronto Raptors – Kyle Lowry (Photo by Tony Avelar-Pool/Getty Images) /

4. at Golden State Warriors – March 5

Had everyone stuck around with their respective teams, this game would have likely been at the top of the list. But, this is the NBA, an ever-changing landscape where freedom of movement is more prominent than any other sports league in America.

As such, these teams are going to look a lot different come the start of the season. That doesn’t make this affair any less enticing, though. It’s the Championship rematch of last season. The Warriors out to seek revenge after the Raptors ended a five-year dynasty that proved to be one of the greatest stretches in NBA history.

The Warriors roster, like the Raptors roster, has a different feel to it than last year. Kevin Durant departed the Bay Area to join up with Kyrie Irving in Brooklyn, but likely won’t see the court until the 2020-21 season.

That’s not to say that this Warriors team is weak. They still have Steph Curry, one of the greatest point guards of all time, leading the team, along with Draymond Green returns, and Klay Thompson – though currently out injured – could likely be back playing by February.

Filling in for Thompson until he returns is D’Angelo Russell, who was traded to the Warriors from the Nets at the start of free agency. An interesting move, to say the least, the Nets front office clearly felt that a backcourt of Irving and Russell, stylistically, just wouldn’t work.

On the other front, the Warriors will be looking to gain some amount of revenge over the reigning champions of the NBA. They open their new arena this season, and after the Raptors closed down the Oracle Arena in style, the Warriors will look to one-up Toronto on their new home court.

It’s rare that the two teams that faced off in the last Finals both take a significant step back at the same time, but both rosters are still two of the best in the league.