Leonard dunks, Ibaka bleeds for Raptors in lopsided playoff win over 76ers

May 10 23:00 2019

The Raptors overpowered the 76ers 125-89 to take a 3-2 lead in their best-of-seven Eastern Conference second-round series. It was a long time coming, but those open shots were the first signs since Game 1, more than a week ago, that the Toronto Raptors could still be the Toronto Raptors.

When Fred VanVleet threw up a three-point attempt late in the first quarter on Tuesday, it was as the almost 20,000 fans at Scotiabank Arena were collectively willing the ball to fall through the hoop.

Led by the MVP-calibre play of Kawhi Leonard, the Raptors can oust the Sixers in Philly and advance to the Eastern Conference finals without the hassle and stress of a Game 7 back in Toronto.

One of the biggest criticisms of past Raptors teams has been their lack of aggressiveness at the beginning and at the end of critical games.

The Raptors playing aggressively from the start of this game all the way till the end was a major reason as to why they were able to punish Sixers as they did in Game 5.

He joins only Shaquille O’Neal in the modern era as players to shoot 60% from the field and score 150+ points in four games.

Kawhi does it again! The Raptors led 92-70 with one quarter left. Siakam had 15 first-half points, and Lowry and Green added 11 each. Lowry had 19 points, while Danny Green had five three-pointers and 17 points for the Raptors, who pulled away with a big second quarter and led by as many as 40 points. They’ll have another opportunity Thursday in a win-or-go-home game.

Centre Joel Embiid is battling a respiratory infection to go along with his knee issues and is a shell of his usual self on the court. The 76ers shot 0-for-8 from beyond the arc in the quarter and had four turnovers, which the Raptors turned into eight points going the other way. He looked less than 100%, and has had the likes of Leonard and Kyle Lowry attack the rim at will. Butler was conspicuously absent in Game 1, but has come back strong over the last four games to assert ownership of the team.

Pascal Siakam – who played with “RIP Dad” written on his shoes; his dad died in 2014 – had been an excellent second option to Leonard before suffering a calf contusion in Game 3.

Serge Ibaka scored 10 points for Toronto, despite needing stitches after taking an inadvertent elbow to the forehead from Leonard in the first quarter.

Embiid is dealing with an illness and carries a questionable tag for tonight’s game. The seven rotation players not named Leonard shot 14-for-32 (44 percent) from 3-point range. But there’s no reason Simmons should be averaging just 9.4 points in the series, and probably no way the 76ers can win it unless he improves. Now, against a premier opponent in the Raptors, they look lost. He’s trying to play for us. The veteran swingman finished with just five points, but secured eight rebounds and dished out three assists. Tobias Harris can’t hit a three-pointer, and Jimmy Butler’s playmaking has been outshined by Kawhi Leonard’s incredible shot-making.

Raptors vs. 76ers Odds Prediction Game 6 NBA Playoffs
    Frank Doyle | Wed. May 08 2019 06:05

Leonard dunks, Ibaka bleeds for Raptors in lopsided playoff win over 76ers
 
 
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