Thank you, Kawhi!
BarnBurner Sports Writer
Sunday, May 12, 2019
Happy Mother’s Day to all the moms out there. I hope it were a good one, especially for you Raptor moms!
Okay, okay I know I've said this before but- this truly was the loudest I've ever heard fans in the Scotiabank Arena. Not to mention the most consistent. They were chanting all most all forty-eight minutes. Amongst those in the crowd were former Raptors, Jose Calderon but no Drake. I chose my very short but simple title for a reason! Kawhi Leonard was and IS the hero of this team and led the Raptors to a thrilling win in game seven!
Raps go on a 6-0 run for five minutes until JJ REDDICK finally hits a shot from beyond the arc. Lowry then picks up his second foul just before the six minute mark. Leonard would steal the ball and then throw it down to extend the lead. Making Raptor fans very very nervous. It were a slow first quarter as the Raptors were up by 5 pts, 18-13.
Leonard stole the ball from Embiid having yet another race down the court to throw it down. I still think that Gasol needs to stop guarding Embiid and Ibaka needs to take over. Embiid is playing Gasol. As for Ibaka, their athleticism is very similar as well as their shooting ability. Speaking of, Ibaka was 2/2 from beyond the arc in the first half.
Kawhi would kick off the second half with a jumper to extend the lead 46-40. The Sixers would take their first lead of the game, thanks to Jimmy Butler who hits a jumper. Philadelphia would go on a 9-0 run , alongside Lowry picking up his third personal foul. It had me thinking, is there where it ends? You want to know what? I was wrong because with under two minutes to play in the third frame, Toronto went off and played the hardest I’ve ever seen them play. They were getting their own rebounds, stealing the ball, hitting shots. This was playoff caliber basketball.
The fourth quarter is where the magic ( and drama) happened. Throughout this whole game the Raptors kept Philly’s high scorers to below 10 pts.
Once again, Gasol would pick up a foul (4th) after fouling Embiid. It would be ruled a ‘loose ball foul’ but everyone who saw the video knew Embiid must be a thespian and put on his finest act. Lucky for Toronto and their fans, Kawhi would go on to hit three back to back shots giving Toronto a 85-80 lead with 4:39 to play in the game. The defence in this game were amazing on the Raptor’s part. Kawhi put up yet another game high 41 pts, 3 ast and 8 reb.
Jimmy But,we would draw the foul on Lowry making it his fourth and sending Butler to the line where he should shoot two and get only one in. 89-86 Toronto. At this point everyone were on their feet and ready to go to the next round. Butler put up 14 pts, going one from six from beyond the arc.
JJ Reddick would foul Kawhi sending him to the line where he would hit only one but it didn’t even matter because with the last possession of the game our hero...I mean Kawhi hits a buzzer beater that jumps to all sides of the net before going in and winning the game 92-90! That’s it folks, Toronto is heading into the next round and will play against the Greek Freak, Giannis Antetokounmpo and his Bucks. The series will start at home.
Fun Fact: Kawhi’s buzzer beater was the first ever game seven buzzer beater in NBA Playoff history!