Review Written by Adam Garfield (@adam__garfield)
The first quarter got off to a slow start, but DeMar DeRozan picked up the tempo after an and-one around the six minute mark. DeRozan did a nasty spin move to get past Tyler Ulis, and made the mid-range jumper after getting fouled by Marquese Chriss. The Raptors went on a 15-5 run to end the 1st quarter. Kyle Lowry led the Raptors in scoring with 13 points, while Jonas Valanciunas had 5 rebounds. The Suns were trailing 23-36 heading into the 2nd quarter.
Both teams started off the 2nd sloppy, committing a total of 4 turnovers within the first two minutes. After a strong performance hitting from behind the arc in the first, the Raptors missed six three pointers - which was one of the factors that let Phoenix cut the lead to single digits. The other factor was that Alex Len was able to score 9 points due to the lack of strong interior defense. The 1st half ended with the Raptors leading the Suns 55-46.
The Raptors had a massive 3rd quarter where they scored 42 points. DeRozan was able to find OG Anunoby open for two three pointers to get the 2nd half started. The highlight of the 3rd quarter came with about two minutes left, when Suns rookie Josh Jackson crossed over and broke Raptors' Jakob Poeltl's ankles. Toronto had difficulty defending Devin Booker, which allowed the Suns star player to score 9 points in the quarter. The Raps ended the 3rd with an 18 point lead, with the score being 79-97.
Toronto committed eight total fouls in the final quarter, which gave Phoenix a chance to make a comeback. Fortunately for the Raptors, the Suns were not able to capitalize on their mistakes due to a number of missed shots. Toronto's Fred VanVleet helped seal the game by scoring 11 of his 13 points in the 4th. With 2:40 left in the game, the Phoenix Suns entered a state of anxiety. Phoenix's Devin Booker was guarding Fred VanVleet when he suddenly came to a stop, bent over and grimacing in pain. Booker had to be carried off the court by teammates, and his injury was later deemed to be related to his groin.
The final score was TOR 126 - PHX 113, defeating the Suns by 13 points.
DeRozan: 20pts, 7 rebounds, 8 assists, 7/17 FGM
Lowry: 20pts, 6 rebounds, 10 assists, 7/12 FGM
Ibaka: 19pts, 6 rebounds, 3 blocks
Anunoby: 16pts, 2 rebounds, 4/5 3PM
Poeltl: 13pts, 5 rebounds
VanVleet: 13pts, 6 assists
Overall, I am very impressed with OG Anunoby's ability to stretch the floor. Coming out of college, he was mostly regarded as a defensive player, but he proved tonight that he is a serious threat behind the arc as well. The Raptors improve to 15-7, which puts them at the 3rd seed in the East.
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