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SportsBruce Arthur: Raptors come to Kawhi’s rescue, even series with Bucks

12:20  22 may  2019
12:20  22 may  2019 Source:   thestar.com

Bruce Arthur: Leonard bounces home biggest shot in Raptors history to reach Eastern final

Bruce Arthur: Leonard bounces home biggest shot in Raptors history to reach Eastern final Bruce Arthur: Leonard bounces home biggest shot in Raptors history to reach Eastern final

Bruce Arthur : Leonard bounces home biggest shot in Raptors history to reach Eastern final. The latest Tweets from Bruce Arthur (@ bruce _ arthur ). Drew and hit a pair of free throws. Kawhi Leonard hits late three, scores 39 to help Raptors even series with 76ers. But he’ s going to come right back

When they traded for Kawhi Leonard, this was what they were hoping for, Bruce Arthur writes. “We know,” said backup point guard Fred VanVleet, after Toronto blew out the Bucks 120-102 to even the series at two games Raptors overwhelm Bucks with substantial boost from bench in Game 4.

Bruce Arthur: Raptors come to Kawhi’s rescue, even series with Bucks© Steve Russell Kawhi Leonard might have looked tired but he had enough energy to contain Eric Bledsoe on this play in the Raptors’ 120-102 win over Milwaukee.

Kawhi Leonard looked like your dad, creaking and slow, first thing in the morning. Who wouldn’t, really? He had taken everything, eaten all that he could, gone past what he probably thought were his limits. Finally, Kawhi looked tired. Carry a team long enough, and it wears on the legs. And that’s before you really start to limp.

And finally, the Toronto Raptors had to be the ones to pick him up. Game 4 of the Eastern Conference final against the Milwaukee Bucks was basically the season. Might as well be a team. With so much on the line, the Raptors finally showed up in full, blowing out the Bucks 120-102 to even the series at two games. It was the second time Milwaukee lost two in a row all year. It’s a series now.

Bruce Arthur: Raptors must share the load to have a shot against Bucks

Bruce Arthur: Raptors must share the load to have a shot against Bucks The shot changed everything, right? It changed everything. Kawhi Leonard hit The Shot and the Toronto Raptors won Game 7 and it felt to Raptors fans like the world was reborn anew. It was emotional. But as the Raptors open the Eastern Conference final against the top-seeded Milwaukee Bucks Wednesday night, the same fundamental questions have to be answered. Technically, Toronto is halfway to a title: eight wins down, eight to go. But the Raptors are only about halfway to determining their proper identity, too. See: Kawhi. “We really lean on him a lot,” said Raptors centre Marc Gasol, whose offensive reticence was an issue in the 76ers series.

Bruce Arthur : There’s no way the Raptors get this far without DeMar: Bruce Arthur : Raptors come to 07:55 05 june 2019 Source: thestar.com. Bruce Arthur : Raptors come to Kawhi ’ s rescue Game 4 of the Eastern Conference final against the Milwaukee Bucks was basically the season.

Referees miss Kawhi Leonard travel on Fred VanVleet dagger. The referees utilized a “let em play” attitude when it came to travels during Game 3 of Raptors fans take their best shot at selling Kawhi on repeat performance. Raptors fans looking to make an extra buck by selling glossy copies of this

Kawhi was lead-legged from the start; he dunked on Giannis early in the third quarter on a cut through the lane but limped to the free-throw line. His jumper was short, short, short. He was hunting steals, trying to keep Giannis out of the paint, trying to bash his way to the free-throw line. Pascal Siakam, meanwhile, was collecting fouls. It had to be someone else.

So many Raptors stepped forward. Fred VanVleet,, who was 4-for-20 in the series, hit five of six shots for 13 points, plus six assists. Serge Ibaka entered the night 8-of-24, and had been left on the bench when all else failed in Game 3; he finished with 17 points and 13 rebounds. Norm Powell was his serenely confident self: he had 21 points in the whole second round, and has 51 in his past two games, though he missed his share in this one.

Bucks rally to take Game 1 from Raptors

Bucks rally to take Game 1 from Raptors Brook Lopez scored 13 of his career playoff-high 29 points in the fourth quarter and Milwaukee closed the game on a 10-0 run to beat the Toronto.

Bruce Arthur : Raptors centre Marc Gasol meets migration problem with open arms: Bruce Arthur : Raptors must share the load to have a shot against Bucks The shot Kawhi Leonard hit The Shot and the Toronto Raptors won Game 7 and it felt to Raptors fans like the world was reborn anew.

Bruce Arthur : Kawhi vs. Giannis is the series for Raptors and Bucks . The act of having sex with a very large and fat woman in which the man must actually climb her to With so much on the line, the Raptors finally showed up in full, blowing out the Bucks 120-102 to even the series at two games.

Kawhi finished with 19 points on 6-of-13 shooting, and had enough for a three-pointer in the fourth to push any comeback away. Add the defence, and this was something closer to the team that went 17-5 without Kawhi, that won in Utah on the second night of a back-to-back without him, that won back-to-back games against the Clippers — funny that the Raptors held Kawhi out of that game, in Los Angeles — and in Golden State, with all four big Warriors in the lineup, by 20.

Toronto wasn’t just a one-man band this year, with Kawhi playing the banjo, the harmonica, and a big bass drum. That was before the playoffs started to eat at that depth; before OG Anunoby’s appendectomy, before Philadelphia’s size shrank VanVleet and Powell, before Milwaukee forced them to play a Game 1 in which all but three of Toronto’s second-half points were scored by Lowry and Kawhi. At the end of Game 3 there were so few Raptors on the floor that you figured you could trust. Since the Philadelphia series, the recurring theme has been: Is this team good enough for its superstar?

Bruce Arthur: Blown chance might haunt Raptors after Game 1 loss to Bucks

Bruce Arthur: Blown chance might haunt Raptors after Game 1 loss to Bucks MILWAUKEE—Against Philadelphia, sometimes the Toronto Raptors offence looked scared. Maybe scared is the wrong word: spooked, squirrelly, vexed. The 76ers were huge. Joel Embiid was terrifying. The series concluded in Game 7 with Kawhi Leonard all but shouldering the whole thing. Then Toronto escaped, and it was a new chance, and for a while it looked like they were free. They defended the galactic Giannis Antetokounmpo as well as you can. They held the other Bucks back from three. And for a while, they absorbed every Milwaukee run, and pushed back. Kyle Lowry, it seemed, couldn’t miss. And they still couldn’t grab this chance, and it may come back to haunt them.

Bruce Arthur @ bruce _ arthur . I don't love Kyle in a game of one-on-one against Giannis . Game 2 of the best-of-seven series is Friday in Milwaukee, then the series shifts to Toronto for Games 3 and 4. The Bucks twice pulled to Bruce Arthur : Raptors come to Kawhi ’ s rescue , even series with

Kawhi ' s uncle: Leonard has spoken highly of Toronto, focused on Warriors. Shortly after the blockbuster trade that sent Kawhi Leonard from the San Antonio Spurs to the Toronto Raptors last June, reports quickly circulated that the superstar wing was disinterested in competing north of the

And then Kawhi was tired and limping, and the Raptors showed up. Toronto built a lead in the second quarter with a 13-0 run built on the backs of Ibaka, VanVleet and Powell. They pushed again in the third, which included VanVleet banking a three on the way to a 20-point lead. VanVleet had only closed Game 3 because Lowry fouled out, and was so far down the hole you wondered if knew where the light was. He was finally, more than anybody, back.

They just played. Marc Gasol was a rock for the second game in a row, and Lowry, playing at his most mentally acute despite that injured left thumb, was simply marvellous, with 18 first-half points on the way to 25, plus everything else. When his Raptors career ends, put this game on the list of the ones you appreciated.

Kawhi had played a career-high 52 minutes in Game 3 while taking the primary defensive duties on Antetokounmpo, the elastic Shaq. He started the game limping on his left leg, and ended it limping on his right, holding the quad that cost him a whole season in San Antonio, and whose treatment or mistreatment paved his path to Toronto.

Bruce Arthur: Raptors need a better way to manage the load in Game 2

Bruce Arthur: Raptors need a better way to manage the load in Game 2 MILWAUKEE—It was just one game, but of course nothing is just one game. To get to where the Toronto Raptors are, most of the mountain has to have been climbed already. You can reduce the seven-month burden with load management, as the phrase goes. You can stop practising. The Raptors still practise once in a while, sure. But they may not again. This is partly because Toronto is loading minutes on their main players like minutes are an all-you-can-carry shopping spree. And they are doing this because, well, somebody’s got to play.

The latest Tweets from Bruce Arthur (@ bruce _ arthur ). Toronto Star sports columnist, father of four, TSN contributor. I'd like me to tweet about sports Bruce Arthur Retweeted Aaron Wherry. Wherry did the thing! He’ s an honest and even -handed assessor of things; that’ s valuable in Canada today.https

Raptors come to Kawhi ’ s rescue , even series with Bucks . Bruce Arthur : Marc Gasol’s biggest rebound with the Raptors has come in the last two games. Raptors forward Kawhi Leonard named to NBA all-defensive team for a fifth time.

“The team leans on him heavily,” Milwaukee’s Malcolm Brogdon said before the game. “So there’s a lot of pressure and a lot of responsibility on him. We have an opportunity to make it even tougher for him as he wears down. Me and Khris (Middleton) have been thrown at him one after the other, and I think we’ll continue to wear him down.”

And for at least one game, he did. If not for a bad two-and-a-half-minute stretch late in Game 1 — a game where only Lowry had a high-end offensive game, for him — Game 4 wouldn’t have been existential for Toronto. But then, if not for so many plays in Game 3, Toronto would have been Portland, on the verge of getting swept. The margin of error is slender, at this time of year.

When the Raptors traded for Kawhi, this was the goal. That’s why they traded for Gasol at 34, despite Kawhi’s looming free agency. Might as well go for it.

And all the Raptors really knew was that Game 4 was the season, and an opportunity to sell out for one another in what might be their last, best chance. What’s left? Well, it’s a series now, and the Raptors finally looked like themselves. Game 5 is Thursday night.

Bruce Arthur is a Toronto-based sports columnist. Follow him on Twitter: @bruce_arthur

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Bruce Arthur: Raptors fans, take a tip from Kawhi and savour the moment.
Bruce Arthur: Raptors fans, take a tip from Kawhi and savour the moment

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