Raptors: Stock up, Stock down after messy, injury-filled week

Nov 11, 2022; Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, USA; Toronto Raptors forward Chris Boucher (25) Mandatory Credit: Alonzo Adams-USA TODAY Sports
Nov 11, 2022; Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, USA; Toronto Raptors forward Chris Boucher (25) Mandatory Credit: Alonzo Adams-USA TODAY Sports /
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The Toronto Raptors, a team who has built themselves around a unique identity of switchability and excellent forward play, saw two of their more essential names get bitten by the infamous injury bug. A groin injury has sidelined Pascal Siakam, while Precious Achiuwa is working through an ankle problem.

The effects of their injuries are already being felt. After the Raptors needed a solid fourth quarter to beat arguably the league’s worst team in the Houston Rockets, Nick Nurse’s squad was absolutely broken down and dismantled by the Oklahoma City Thunder in one of the worst losses of Nurse’s career.

The vibes around this team are still a bit off, as they clearly are trying to figure out how to win games with so much production on both sides of the ball sidelined for the foreseeable future. With a few road games in a row coming up, things won’t get easier for some time.

The Raptors have been in for quite a whirlwind over the last few weeks, meaning that it’s time to figure out which players are performing well and which need to step their game up. With some uncertain, potentially turbulent times in the future, the Raptors need to play more unified, consistent basketball.

Stock up, Stock down after injury-filled week for Toronto Raptors

Stock up: Chris Boucher

Boucher is going to be in the spotlight over the next few weeks, as he will be the first guy who comes off the bench in relief of rookie stud Christian Koloko. If his showing against the Thunder is any indication of how he is going to play in that period, the Raptors should feel very confident.

A slow start to the last week of games was quickly overruled by a 20-point, 12-rebound showing in 31 minutes against the Thunder. He may have been the only player who performed well above average in the Oklahoma City nightmare, setting a strong tone for what the Achiuwa-less bench could look like.

Chris Boucher made himself known for the Toronto Raptors.

Boucher and Otto Porter Jr. are in a position where they both need to play around 25 minutes per game in the next few weeks to make up for the loss of Achiuwa. Porter did his part, but he didn’t make much of a dent in the scoreboard. Without Boucher, who knows how wide the margin would have been?

Whatever security Toronto thought they had in their defensive gameplan has been ripped apart by an Oklahoma City team that ran right at them. Boucher needs to play a big part in papering over the cracks while still being a solid floor-spacer and rebounder. Let’s justify that contract!