1 stud and 1 dud as OG Anunoby, Raptors defeat Timberwolves

TORONTO, ON - MARCH 30: Karl-Anthony Towns #32 of the Minnesota Timberwolves drives against OG Anunoby #3 of the Toronto Raptors (Photo by Cole Burston/Getty Images)
TORONTO, ON - MARCH 30: Karl-Anthony Towns #32 of the Minnesota Timberwolves drives against OG Anunoby #3 of the Toronto Raptors (Photo by Cole Burston/Getty Images) /

Every game matters for OG Anunoby and the Toronto Raptors, as they need to continue feeling off some wins in order to make sure that they can make the postseason without getting swept into the play-in tournament. Everyone from stars like Scottie Barnes and role players like Chris Boucher must make an impact.

Against Karl-Anthony Towns and a very hot Minnesota Timberwolves team, Toronto did not look well-equipped to defend their home court. With Minnesota dominating the glass and Toronto turning the ball over, this team looked poised to get run out of the gym at home.

The Raptors quickly rallied in the second and third quarters thanks to a barrage of 3-pointers. After finishing 18-36 from behind the arc, Toronto pulled ahead and took home a 125-102 victory that moved them two games in front of the No. 7 seed Cavaliers.

The Raptors welcomed a hungry young team spearheaded by a Coach of the Year candidate in Chris Finch into the building and they completely shut them down. Toronto should walk away from tonight feeling even better about how this team has been performing lately.

125. 81. Final. 102. 86

OG Anunoby was on fire for the Toronto Raptors.

You know that the offense was on fire when Pascal Siakam records a triple-double and he wasn’t even the brightest star!

The Raptors didn’t get the usual gaudy scoring production from Siakam they have grown accustomed to, meaning that an even greater burden fell on Anunoby and Gary Trent Jr. in this game. Both of them responded with amazing shooting nights, with Anunoby, in particular, standing out.

Anunoby finished the game with 22 points on 9-13 shooting and 4-4 from the 3-point line. In one second-quarter run, Anunoby recorded 13 consecutive points as he put Toronto on his back.

Despite going up against a very deep Timberwolves team that boasts names like D’Angelo Russell and Anthony Edwards, Anunoby played a big hand in limiting their effectiveness. The finger injury that was bugging him appears to be less restrictive than it was in prior games.

It took one heck of a performance to leave Trent and sharpshooter Precious Achiuwa out of this spot, but OG creating one of the best performances of the season right before the postseason comes around had to feel good. When he’s playing like this, Toronto is a very deadly squad.

The Toronto Raptors needed more from Chris Boucher.

Scottie Barnes had a very poor start to the night, as he began the second half on the bench due to his lack of offensive aggression. Still, some timely late buckets helped push him over Boucher, who had an immensely difficult time getting anything going as a scorer.

Boucher didn’t score his first basket until the early seconds of the fourth quarter. Boucher was just 2-9 from the field, though that number came about as a result of Naz Reid and Jarred Vanderbilt making his life hell in the paint. After a resurgence in February, Boucher is starting to regress to the mean.

Boucher is under a ton of pressure. Not only does he have to make up for the lack of guard depth by scoring consistently, but he has to compete for minutes against four other bench bigs. Performances like this one aren’t going to entice Nick Nurse to lean on him in the postseason.

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