Toronto Raptors: Top five performances from week nine

Toronto Raptors - Fred VanVleet (Richard Lautens/Toronto Star via Getty Images)
Toronto Raptors - Fred VanVleet (Richard Lautens/Toronto Star via Getty Images) /
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Toronto Raptors
Toronto Raptors – Serge Ibaka (Photo by Chris Schwegler/NBAE via Getty Images) /

5. Serge Ibaka

Opponent: Detroit Pistons

Stat line: 25 points, 13 rebounds, 2 assists, 1 steal

This was a big-time performance from Serge Ibaka. Not only because he was struggling prior to this game but because he really stepped up when the team needed him too. With Marc Gasol getting hurt in the first quarter, Ibaka saw all the minutes he could handle and did not disappoint.

When Ibaka checked in for Gasol, he did not wait to get going as he scored a quick four points to end the first. The second quarter looked like more of the same for Ibaka as he was able to score another four points to end the half with eight and the Raptors up by six.

After an average first half, Ibaka absolutely owned the third quarter. He seemed to benefit from starting the half, as he was able to score 13 points and grab a very impressive 8 rebounds (4 offensive)  in the third quarter. He dominated Andre Drummond and the Pistons as the Raptors grew their lead to 17 going into the fourth. Ibaka only scored four points in the final quarter as the Raptors simply did not need his production anymore with the lead being so lopsided.

Ibaka had a great overall week for the Raptors as he finished with averages of 17.0 points, 8.3 rebounds, and 1.3 blocks. With Gasol now expected to be out for a few weeks with a groin injury, Ibaka will need to step up more than usual as he will be the starting center for the foreseeable future.