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DEEP-SIXED: Raptors stumble early, often in pre-season loss to Philly

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Nearly as good as a Raptors’ fan could have felt after that first pre-season effort, the second needed to have them feeling equally as anxious.

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Dealing with the identical 76ers group they did three nights earlier though, with the famous exception of the return of each Joel Embiid and Tobias Harris, the feel-good vibes have been changed with some nervousness because the Raptors coughed up 71 first-half factors on their method to a 125-113 loss.

Clearly, the return of Embiid and Harris have been elements. To not be underestimated was easy satisfaction. The Sixers have been embarrassed in Toronto three nights in the past and head coach Doc Rivers referred to as out their effort, their physicality and their very want. None of these have been in query Thursday night time because the Sixers have been the higher group from the opening tip.

The Sixers received double-digit scoring efforts from eight totally different gamers led by the 16 from Georges Niang.

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Philadelphia was lethal from behind the arc, going 18-for-36 from distance, once more led by Niang, who was good on 4 of his seven makes an attempt.

The Raptors struggled mightily with the Sixers’ measurement on this one with Embiid again becoming a member of Andre Drummond, two of the larger bigs within the league, in opposition to a Raptors group that was taking part in with out three of their very own bigs in Khem Birch, Chris Boucher and Yuta Watanabe.

As at all times, there have been some brilliant spots for the Raptors.

OG Anunoby continues to point out a ton of confidence together with his offensive sport, ending with a game-high 22 factors. That sort of contribution goes to be wanted even when the likes of Pascal Siakam, Boucher and Birch return.

Gary Trent Jr. struggled together with his long-range photographs, which is to be anticipated given this was his first motion in opposition to anybody he didn’t share a uniform with.

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Trent although stays an above-average scorer and went 5-for-7 from the non-three-point capturing areas.

The Raptors will stay on the highway for a 3rd pre-season sport Saturday in Boston earlier than returning dwelling.

EARLY MOST IMPROVED

Requested about Rexdale native Dalano Banton’s progress, coach Nick Nurse referred to as the Raptors’ second-round choose in all probability probably the most improved participant on his roster since Banton joined the membership.

“He’s made some actual strides in his tempo of play,” Nurse stated. “He’s made some actual strides in his capturing that’s gonna, like, he’s modified the mechanics and he’s received large work ethic. I don’t know when that’s going to point out up however I’m actually assured it’s going to point out up due to these two issues. He’s going to maintain at it and the stroke appears good now.”

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The place Banton wants time and repetition is with the Raptors defensive schemes.

“There’s a whole lot of studying on the defensive that takes place simply, once more, foundationally, rotation-wise, scheme-wise, and all that stuff, “Nurse stated. “However saying that, it’s fairly cool that he races the ball up the ground at 6-9 and has an incredible imaginative and prescient after which he blocks a shot after which grabs an enormous rebound on the different finish. He performs huge on the defensive finish and that’s sort of, we like that, versatile.”

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YUTA HAS EARNED IT

It shouldn’t come as a shock to anybody that Watanabe, regardless of the very fact he doesn’t possess a assured contract, has all however actually earned a spot with this group.

Nurse stated as a lot earlier than Wednesday’s sport.

Good factor, too, as a result of it appears like his alternative to point out any extra throughout this pre-season has been taken away from him with a gentle calf pressure that he suffered Wednesday throughout follow.

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Watanabe has solely gotten higher since a powerful debut season with the Raptors a yr in the past and confirmed as a lot by the coaching camp interval and the early portion of the pre-season schedule.

Listening to Nurse inform it, the Raptors are counting their blessings that Watanabe wasn’t extra severely injured throughout a follow incident on Wednesday.

Nurse stated he expects him again by opening night time however unlikely for any of the remaining three pre-season video games, which ends with Tuesday’s sport in Washington.

BUSTED

Eighteen former NBA gamers are going through costs for an alleged medical health insurance scheme to defraud the league’s advantages pay of virtually $4 million.

Among the many 18 are 5 who frolicked as members of the Toronto Raptors. That record contains Alan Anderson, Jamario Moon, Antoine Wright, Milt Palacio and Sebastian Telfair.

All 18 are going through costs of conspiracy to commit well being care fraud and wire fraud along with aggravated id theft.

The scheme revolved round the usage of pretend invoices and federal prosecutors are alleging the entire thing was orchestrated by Terrence Williams.

mganter@postmedia.com

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