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SportRaptors bench play key reason Toronto on cusp of first trip to NBA Finals

17:45  25 may  2019
17:45  25 may  2019 Source:   nbcsports.com

Raptors outlast Bucks in 2OT for Game 3 win

Raptors outlast Bucks in 2OT for Game 3 win Raptors outlast Bucks in 2OT for Game 3 win

Part of the reason why Leonard was able to carry the Raptors home was because Fred VanVleet, for a second VanVleet, who had his second child the day before Game 4, put up 21 points off the bench , going We have to play our asses off to beat them." The Raptors have done so three straight times

Part of the reason why Leonard was able to carry the Raptors home was because Fred VanVleet, for a second VanVleet, who had his second child the day before Game 4, put up 21 points off the bench , going We have to play our asses off to beat them." The Raptors have done so three straight times

Raptors bench play key reason Toronto on cusp of first trip to NBA Finals© Getty Images

There are multiple reasons the Toronto Raptors have beaten the Milwaukee Bucks three times in a row and now are one win away from the franchise’s first trip to the NBA Finals.

Kawhi Leonard and his play — particularly his defense on Giannis Antetokounmpo — is a huge one. So is the Raptors incredible halfcourt defense, which has held the Bucks to an 84.3 net rating on halfcourt possessions in this series. When the Raptors have been able to slow the game down (which they have done very well the last two games, with possession totals in the mid-90s) they win.

Just don’t forget about the Raptors bench.

Lowry has 25, Raptors rout Bucks 120-102 to even East finals

Lowry has 25, Raptors rout Bucks 120-102 to even East finals Kyle Lowry scored 25 points, Kawhi Leonard had 19 and the Toronto Raptors beat the Milwaukee Bucks 120-102 on Tuesday night to even the Eastern Conference finals at two games apiece. BOX SCORE: RAPTORS 120, BUCKS 102 Serge Ibaka had 17 points and 13 rebounds for the Raptors, who improved to 7-2 at home this postseason. Reserve Norm Powell scored 18 points, and Marc Gasol had 17. The home team has won all four games in the series so far. Game 5 is Thursday night in Milwaukee. Giannis Antetokounmpo had 25 points and 10 rebounds for the top-seeded Bucks. Khris Middleton scored 30 points.

Behind their even-keeled superstar, the Raptors rallied from an early 14-point deficit to defeat the Bucks 105-99 and move within one win of the franchise's first trip to the NBA Finals . Part of the reason why Leonard was able to carry the Raptors home was because Fred VanVleet, for a second

franchise's first trip to the NBA Finals , Toronto coach Nick Nurse was asked what allowed his. Part of the reason why Leonard was able to carry the Raptors home was because Fred VanVleet, for a We have to play our asses off to beat them." The Raptors have done so three straight times

Fred VanVleet, Serge Ibaka, and Norman Powell — the three guys coach Nick Nurse leans on in his regular rotations — have been critical for the Raptors, and if they are again on Saturday night in Toronto it will lift the franchise to a place it has never been before.

Toronto’s starters are -23 in this series. That fivesome — Kyle Lowry, Danny Green, Leonard, Pascal Siakam, and Marc Gasol — were -10 in Game 5, struggling against an impressive Milwaukee starting lineup.

In Game 5, it was the Raptors’ bench that led the comeback after the Bucks’ fast start. It has been that way all series. Lineups that have at least one of those core three Raptors bench guys on the floor are +30 this series. Lineups with all three of them on the court together are +12.

Burning questions for Bucks-Raptors Game 6

Burning questions for Bucks-Raptors Game 6 The Toronto Raptors and Milwaukee Bucks will battle Saturday night in a huge Eastern Conference finals game in Toronto. Game details: Here’s a look at the start time, television information, and odds for tonight’s Game 6. When: 8:30 p.m. EST Where: Scotiabank Arena, Toronto, Canada TV: TNT Betting Line: Milwaukee -2.5/ 212.5 points The big picture: The Raptors have an opportunity to clinch their first trip to the NBA Finals with a victory Saturday night. On the other side, the Bucks hops to end a three-game losing streak and send this one back to Wisconsin for Game 7.

Behind their even-keeled superstar, the Raptors rallied from an early 14-point deficit to defeat the Bucks 105-99 and move within one win of the franchise's first trip to the NBA Finals . Part of the reason why Leonard was able to carry the Raptors home was because Fred VanVleet, for a second

6 reasons the Raptors have turned the Eastern Conference Finals around. New, 6 comments. But the key to slowing down Antetokounmpo is similar to how players described slowing down James The Eastern Conference Finals is turning out to be the incredible series we expected it to be: a battle

Different guys are stepping up each game. In Game 5 it was VanVleet’s turn. After a rough few games in this series, he got to Milwaukee late after being with his wife for the birth of their son, then proceeded to knock down 7-of-9 threes in Toronto’s come-from-behind win.

“He oozes the confidence that spreads to the other guys,” Toronto coach Nick Nurse said of VanVleet. “Again, he just stepped into the shots that were there tonight, and he was probably due to get hot in these playoffs. It’s been probably a long time coming. Great game by him.”

Toronto’s bench — and Leonard — are key reasons that this team responded to adversity, going down 0-2 in the series and bouncing back. It’s the experience of having been there before, having dealt with the pressure before, learning about themselves because they have been tested like this in previous years. Leonard and Green have rings from San Antonio, Gasol has been to conference finals in Memphis, Lowry has been there through all the Raptors struggles in recent playoffs. On the bench, Ibaka has seen plenty, and these guys have not been fazed by the moment.

Raptors' VanVleet is X-factor that got Toronto to NBA Finals

Raptors' VanVleet is X-factor that got Toronto to NBA Finals Following the birth of his son, Raptors guard Fred VanVleet broke out of a prolonged slump with the greatest three-game shooting stretch in NBA playoff history.

MILWAUKEE — One win away and a chance to get it at home is all that lies between the Raptors and a first -ever trip to the NBA Finals and a date with the Golden State Warriors. In an Eastern Conference final in which the home team held serve throughout the first four games

NBA . 6 reasons the Raptors have turned the Eastern Conference Finals around. But the key to slowing down Antetokounmpo is similar to how players described slowing down James Harden: You The Eastern Conference Finals is turning out to be the incredible series we expected it to be: a battle

It’s the test the Bucks are facing now — this group had never been challenged like this. Their athleticism and Antetokounmpo’s MVP-level season propelled this team to the best record in the NBA, then they swept through the first two rounds of the playoffs with an 8-1 record. After that, they beat the Raptors the first two games of this series.

However, now they have lost three in a row for the first time all season and they are learning about their weaknesses. The Bucks entire offense is based around the idea that nobody can slow Antetokounmpo one-on-one, except that Leonard has done just that. The Greek Freak has shot 35.5 percent this series (11-of-31, via Second Spectrum data) when Leonard has been his primary defender. Antetokounmpo also hasn’t found shooters and those guys have not hit the passes he does make, particularly in the halfcourt. Toronto has controlled the tempo the past few games, and when Antetokounmpo isn’t getting easy buckets in transition the Milwaukee offense stumbles. Toronto also has taken care of the ball and hit shots, with Leonard getting to his spots on the floor, which has limited the Bucks transition chances.

Raptors take NBA Finals opener, beat Warriors 118-109

Raptors take NBA Finals opener, beat Warriors 118-109 Raptors beat Warriors, win Game 1 118-109

The Toronto Raptors have never won an NBA Championship till now. Many are thinking that this is the year the Raptors finally break through and make it to the NBA Finals . The Toronto Raptors still have many kinks to work out, wonky bench play and a penchant for giving up leads, chief among

Kawhi Leonard scored 35 points, 15 in the fourth quarter, as the visiting Toronto Raptors defeated the Milwaukee Bucks 105-99 to move within one game of the first NBA Finals It didn't look like Toronto were going to stand on the cusp on history at various stages in Friday morning's contest though, as

The Bucks need to make adjustments — finding ways to get Antetokounmpo the ball with better matchups, not having him attack from the top of the key every time and giving him some picks to force switches — and they need another ball handler, such as Eric Bledsoe or George Hill, to have a monster game. Khris Middleton and Malcolm Brogdon can and should do a little more shot creation.

And Milwaukee has to contain that Raptors bench and not get beat so badly when they are on the floor.

If not, the Bucks will be on vacation in Cabo next week while the Raptors are still playing.

Related slideshow: Best of 2019 NBA playoffs (Provided by imagn)

Raptors bench play key reason Toronto on cusp of first trip to NBA Finals

Leonard dominates as Raptors take 3-1 Finals lead vs. Warriors.
The Toronto Raptors are one win from their first NBA title. Kawhi Leonard scored 36 points and grabbed 12 rebounds, Serge Ibaka came off the bench to score 20 points and the Raptors beat the Golden State Warriors 105-92 on Friday night for a 3-1 lead in the NBA Finals. BOX SCORE: RAPTORS 105, WARRIORS 92 Pascal Siakam scored 19 for the Raptors. Game 5 is in Toronto on Monday. The Warriors need a win to extend the series and give themselves one more game at Oracle Arena before moving to San Francisco next season. Klay Thompson scored 28 points and Stephen Curry scored 27 for the Warriors.

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