The Toronto Raptors picked up their second successive victory over the Indiana Pacers in yet another tight game. How did everyone grade in the win?
Wins come in all shapes and sizes in the NBA. That's life. During their historic 13-game winning streak, the Raptors have picked up all sorts of wins; blowouts, sloppy victories, come from behind victories, and against the Indiana Pacers, two close wins.
It doesn't matter how the wins come around. All that matters is, at the end of the game, you have more points on the board than your opponent. No one will look back in history and meticulously dissect a Friday night game in the middle of February. Unless however, it's the last game of basketball ever played before technological singularity imposes itself.
The Raptors, as noted, willed their way to 13 straight wins with a second victory in three nights against one of the best teams in the Eastern Conference -- on the road no less. Tough doing against a team that sits sixth in the East with a record of 31-21.
They had to go about it the hard way too. After a strong start to the game, Pascal Siakam was inadvertently caught in the eye by Rondae Hollis-Jefferson and later in the game, the Raptors would lose Kyle Lowry to, what was categorised as, whiplash.
Luckily, it looks like Lowry will only miss one game, but it's another reminder than injuries have consistently been a presence this season. Despite it all, the Raptors sit 38-14 in the East, sitting in second place with a game and a half over the Boston Celtics, and a three and a half game lead over the Miami Heat who lost to the Sacramento Kings.
The Pacers weren't able to recreate their shooting touch from deep, shooting 29-percent from three and they were forced into 20 total turnovers during the game - another reminder of how good this Raptors defense is.
Those turnovers allowed the Raptors to get out on the run and score in transition, which remains their wheelhouse. Turnovers, sharpshooting from three, and another great performance from some key players.
Win number 13.