Raptors assistant getting MVP chain over RJ Barrett is unusual, yet still awesome

This coach deserved recognition for Sunday's game

Toronto Raptors v Golden State Warriors
Toronto Raptors v Golden State Warriors / Lachlan Cunningham/GettyImages
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The Toronto Raptors' win against the Golden State Warriors was a case of RJ Barrett simply being too good for the opposing defense. With 37 points on tremendous efficiency and no turnovers, Barrett obliterated Steve Kerr's Warriors in a 133-118 victory that saw Toronto go up by 27 at halftime.

Barrett is justifiably getting roses thrown at his feet for that virtuoso showing, but Darko Rajakovic and the coaching staff did a tremendous job of making sure every player on the roster (save for Scottie Barnes in a rare off night) was able to run through a tissue-thin Golden State defense.

This win had to feel tremendous for Jama Mahlalela, chief architect of Toronto's offense and former Warriors coach. Mahlalela was tasked with figuring out the best way to exploit a beatable Golden State team, and he did just in spectacular fashion.

Even with Barrett's scoring barrage, Mahlalela got the Raptors MVP chain after the Golden State game. Not giving it to Barrett after his white-hot display seems unusual, but this game clearly meant a ton to Mahlalela. On a coaching staff that is young and inexperienced, his input is invaluable.

Jama Mahlalela gets Toronto Raptors MVP chain over RJ Barrett

Mahlalela spent time with the Raptors as both an assistant with the NBA squad and head coach of Raptors 905 back in their glory days. Mahlalela spent two seasons with the Warriors as one of their top assistants, winning a championship in one of them, before returning to the Raptors.

Barrett was the star of the show and deserves every ounce of praise coming his way, but Mahlalela's preparation made sure everyone could get in on the action. Immanuel Quickley finished with 10 assists, Chris Boucher was a perfect 7-7 from the field while scoring 17 points in just 16 minutes, and Jakob Poeltl piled up another double-double.

Toronto is averaging a preposterous 125.7 points per game since acquiring Barrett and Quickley, as Rajakovic's up-tempo offense is finally starting to take shape. What Toronto lost in on-ball defensive excellence with OG Anunoby, they have made up for with Barrett and Quickley's scoring.

These two new additions, coupled with a staff in Rajakovic and Mahlalela that now have the ability to implement their preferred offensive style, have worked wondrously so far. With a few more nights like this, Mahlalela's skill in designing effective offenses might become more well-known across the league.

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