Title: Raptors continue struggling to navigate ‘bit of a blank show’ season
Date: March 14, 2021
Original Source: The Athletic
Synopsis: In my latest for The Athletic Toronto, I wrote about the team’s fifth consecutive loss down a third of their roster and the ongoing shit-show, to fill in Nick Nurse’s blanks.
When the worst-case scenario hits, a basketball team goes into damage minimization mode.
Don’t suffer any more injuries. Don’t concede anything in trying to survive that proves irreparable later. If you’re lucky, find a silver lining or two, whether it’s players getting more experience or someone unexpectedly stepping up. If you’re beyond moral victories, fine, but find something in the valley you can take with you for the climb back up. And if you’re really lucky or have the right combination of makeup and circumstance? Well, maybe you can even reduce the harm to your place in the standings.
“Listen, I’ve kind of said this the last couple weeks in this scenario: We’re gonna have to somehow piece this thing together,” Toronto Raptors head coach Nick Nurse said before Sunday’s game against the Chicago Bulls. “I’m really hoping to pick off one of these games until the troops can get back. We’ve been unable to do that so far. We’re gonna dig ourselves a little bit of a hole, or we have.”
The hole grows ever deeper. The Raptors did not pick one off, losing their fifth consecutive game 118-95. They are now 17-22, 11th in the Eastern Conference and out of a play-in position as things stand.