Hard Fought Win for the Raptors Against a Resilient Kings Team

Noora Popal
BarnBurner Sports Writer

@NooraPopal

Monday, March 9, 2020


Sacramento - For their fourth stop of their Westcoast road-trip, the Raptors faced the Sacramento Kings whom they defeated, 118-113. It was undoubtedly a tough win, but a win nonetheless. 

Not only did we get an extra hour of sunlight because of daylight savings, but Norman Powell also gave us some sunshine in tonight’s game. He had another standout performance with 31 points 5 assists. With Powell missing many games this season due to injuries, one would expect him to come back from these absences a little shaky. But that’s quite literally the opposite of what’s been happening. 

All one can do is hope the injuries would keep away from Powell because he is what the team needs. And it looks like Toronto got “Playoff Powell” a little earlier than expected, which is a pleasant surprise. 

The Raptors were very active from beyond the arc compared to the Kings, which is not standard for Sacramento. They were playing a back-to-back game this evening after defeating the Portland Trailblazers, where they were nothing BUT effective in shooting 3’s. 

It’s interesting to see how different the three-point shooting of a team could look like when playing back to back games. The Kings are usually pretty effective from beyond the arc, which was evident in the game against Portland where they were 21-39 (53.8%), compared to the 8-31 3PTM against the Raptors. Though, they were better than the Raptors at keeping them out of the paint, which is maybe why they had no other choice but to shoot threes. 

Pascal Siakam had a little bit of a rough game, though he felt the urgency of not letting his team lose when he shot 11 of his 23 points in the final 2 minutes of the match. 

With 14 seconds left in the fourth quarter, the Kings were down by only two points, 113-115, which could’ve resulted in an unexpected loss for the Raptors. When looking at things from one perspective, one could say that the majority of this game did not go the way many were expecting. 

Making one of his two free-throws, OG got the score to 116-113. And after Powell was fouled and made both of his free-throws, that pretty much sealed the deal for the Raptors, 118-113. 

Also, let’s not forget about Toronto’s most beloved point-guard, Kyle Lowry, who, like Powell, had an outstanding night. He was especially productive in the 4th quarter, where he, as well as others, had a realization that they did not want to lose to the Kings. 

Having Marc Gasol back after being absent for 15 games was nice. However, unlike before his hamstring injury, he ended up coming off the bench as opposed to starting instead of Ibaka. His performance went as expected with just 3 points 2 rebounds and 2 assists.  

The Raptors will head over to Utah to face the Jazz on a back-to-back night on Monday at 9 pm ET. They hope to continue their 3 game winning streak and win 4/5 games on this road trip. After that, they will be back home to face the Detroit Pistons on March 14th at 7:30 pm ET.