Toronto Raptors: Three takeaways from easy win vs Chicago Bulls

Toronto Raptors - Kyle Lowry (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images)
Toronto Raptors - Kyle Lowry (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images) /
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Toronto Raptors
Toronto Raptors – Pascal Siakam (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images) /


Even in a game that went as well as Saturday night’s, there are always things to work on. So far this season, the Toronto Raptors’ biggest point of emphasis should be to cut down on turnovers. Against the Bulls, they had 22 giveaways.

In a grantedly small sample size of just three games, the Raptors are averaging 21.3 turnovers per contest. That ranks them 29th in the entire NBA, ahead of only the dreadful New York Knicks. They’re averaging more than seven additional turnovers per game than they did last season.

It’s easy to shrug the turnovers off as growing pains associated with a new team. However, the Raptors return almost all of last season’s rotation and certainly have more continuity than most teams after a summer which saw nearly 50-percent of the league swap teams.

The team’s biggest offenders so far are Pascal Siakam, Norman Powell, and Stanley Johnson.

Siakam is averaging 4.3 turnovers per game, up from just 1.9 last season. Maintaining efficiency while increasing volume is incredibly difficult, and while Siakam has posted a similar overall shooting efficiency compared to last season, he can’t give the ball away this much. Powell faces a similar challenge, particularly as he tries to increase his playmaking for others.

Stanley Johnson, meanwhile…. yikes. He’s turned the ball over four times in just 10 minutes, coughing it up at seemingly every opportunity. Just as concerning, he’s recorded those turnovers without doing anything else. He has zero assists and just one shot within the 3-point line. If you’re not going to the rim or creating for others, how are you even turning it over?

Three games is way too early for panic, but the turnovers are something to keep an eye on.