The Toronto Raptors Come Oh So Close To Pulling Off A Miracle In Houston!
BarnBurner Sports Writer
Saturday, January 26, 2019
Close But No Cigar & May Have To Wait Until Post Season To Get Revenge From The Rockets
So what do you do when you face the best shooter in the league ? Well you bring in your All-Star and MVP winner himself, Kawhi Leonard. Kawhi has been off for a week but returned tonight and thank god he did because he sure helped the Raptors stay in this one. I am going to let you know now. This article is going to be all about stats. Stats! Stats! Stats! All eyes were definitely on this game tonight as it were probably one of the most anticipated games if the season. Coming into this game Harden has made so much history it’s been hard to keep up. No Chris Paul as he is still out with a hamstring injury. Let’s get to it!
It were the Rockets’ who started the game strong and led all four quarters. I were lucky enough to go watch the game with friends’ Tee, Amanda and a few others at a local bar. I suggest if you are ever going to watch the game that you go watch it with friends because it is 100x more fun and more entertaining...plus the trash talking his hilarious.
I predicted that Toronto would keep the leagues 2019 NBA MVP to below 30 pts and I was (almost) right ! Harden didn’t score until he got sent to the line with 8:56 on the clock. I bet Toronto fans are. Happy he didn’t put up 61 pts like he did the other night.
Fun Fact: Harden is now at 22 consecutive games with 30+ points, only 4 games behind one of Wilt Chamberlin’s four streaks!
Houston outscored Toronto 33-20 in the 1st quarter but funny enough Toronto outscored Houston in the last 3 quarters 99-88. It was a slow start for the Raps and unfortunately that’s what got them. You could see Nick Nurse switching up the lineups in the 2nd quarter, trying to find one that works but couldn’t seem to find it. Who impressed me this game was Eric Gordon. He along with the rest of his starting lineup( Rivers, Harden, Faried and Tucker) were on a roll all game and out up 111/121 of Houston’s points! All starters ended in double digits and we can forget about “the beards” game high 35pts, 7 ast and 2 reb.
Toronto was pretty much behind by a large gap the whole game until the 3rd quarter where they came within 4 pts, aka a two possession game, thanks to a steal from Lowry to Leonard who flicked it up the court to Siakam for a two handed flush!
Let’s break down the last two minutes of play. 115-105, then Siakam kicks it out to Green who fakes Eric Gordon and drains the corner three trying to get them closer to tying this game up. Leonard then gets the ball to drop to cut the lead to 9 pts just before Ibaka gets fouled out. Harden gets sent to the line and hits both free throws giving the Rocket’s a total score of 122. That would mean with 1:14 to play that Toronto went on a 9-0 run and if you were to give them another 15 second they may have tied or even won the game. Although- there were 15 seconds left on the clock and plenty of enough time for Toronto to bring the ball up and out up a shot but for some odd reason reason Kawhi help in to it and tried to shoot an awful shot with just seconds go to. Bad idea and whoever thought of that -plan needs to take a seat. Kawhi has a team high 32 pts, 5 ast and 7 reb. Also continuing his streak of 20+ ppg.
Toronto stays on the road and heads over to Dallas where they will find ROTY Luka Doncic and the Dallas Mavericks. I went to a Mav’s game once. I went down to Dallas for Suit School and wanted to check out the game. I asked if anyone wanted to come with me and everybody declined so when the police saw me standing alone out front waiting to buy a ticket they must’ve felt bad and gave me a ticket 4 rows from the court...it was a good day. As for the city of Dallas..it was cool to see where JFK were assassinated (from a historic standpoint) but that’s pretty much it. Tip off is at 7:00pm.
Rockets 121-119 Raptors