Title: Dissecting a wild Raptors-Pacers season series and its potential playoff implications
Date: February 24, 2020
Original Source: The Athletic
Synopsis: In my latest for The Athletic Toronto, I broke down the Raptors’ four-game season series with the Pacers, looking for takeaways in the event they meet up in the playoffs.
It couldn’t feel comfortable so early. Not yet, at least.
The Toronto Raptors opened up a 13-1 lead in a little over two minutes against the Indiana Pacers on Sunday, holding them scoreless for over five minutes to start the game. On most nights, that would be a great sign. That the Raptors kept it slowly rolling to a 19-3 lead was too, and eventually to 34-12, one of the top-20 quarters in franchise history, by scoring margin. The season series with the Pacers to that point, though, had been defined by wild swings in the score – dramatic comebacks, comfortable cushions deflated, and an overtime thriller. So Nick Nurse wasn’t willing to turn this early Sunday evening casual, just yet.
“I try not to. A lot of times it’s fool’s gold or games turn really quickly. So you don’t get too carried away,” he said.
Nurse, by the way, was conducting his post-game press availability much later than usual. Serge Ibaka had commanded the media room adjacent to the Raptors’ locker room first, holding court in his coach’s stead. The Raptors had not gotten carried away or discovered fool’s gold. Instead, they hung the largest victory in franchise history on the Pacers, 127-81, to close out the season series.