The Toronto Raptors are still navigating some choppy waters, as they are in a position to either dip into rebuild mode by selling off some assets or stay the course and try to win now. It doesn’t appear that Masai Ujiri is intent on picking the first option any time soon.
Excitement for Opening Night in October might be somewhat muted due to all the uncertainty around new head coach Darko Rajakovic and the team’s new coaching staff, but optimism still exists due to young players like Scottie Barnes and Gradey Dick taking off.
After opening the last two seasons against a bang-average Wizards team and a Cavaliers team that struggled to put away the Raptors amid their success last season, the 2023-24 season promises to get off to quite a pulse-pounding start if the trend repeats itself.
These three teams all stand out as squads that would make for an interesting first game for the Raptors, as Toronto can test their skills against them while giving fans quite the spectacle on the floor and letting some engaging narratives play out on the court.
3 teams who would be perfect for the Toronto Raptors season opener.
3. Miami Heat
The Heat were just a few games better than the Raptors in the regular season. Still, it was Jimmy Butler, and Raptors legend Kyle Lowry, who were the ones who managed to pull off such a remarkable postseason run that culminated in yet another Miami Eastern Conference title.
The Raptors could try to position themselves as the East’s next underdog darling. At least, that’s what Masai Ujiri seems to be believing due to his general resistance to tearing everything down and starting a rebuild. Miami could be a good measuring stick upon which to measure their progress.
Will the Toronto Raptors play the Miami Heat?
Heat-Raptors games may not be very aesthetically pleasing, as these two defense-first teams often combine for some serious low-scoring slobber knockers. If nothing else, playing Miami early in the season could help guarantee a close first game of the season.
Toronto will also get to face off against Lowry once again, which is always an event due to the impact he had on the franchise. With Lowry likely only in the league for a couple more seasons, fans need to relish seeing No. 7 on the floor in whatever capacity he has left.