Raptors lose to Trail Blazers, as Norman Powell spurs 14-0 run in emotional return

Title: Raptors lose to Trail Blazers, as Norman Powell spurs 14-0 run in emotional return
Date: March 28, 2021
Original Source: The Athletic
Synopsis: In my latest for The Athletic Toronto, I wrote about Norman Powell’s emotional pseudo-return to face the Raptors just a few days after being traded.

Basketball has a way of offering up poetic symmetry at the most emotional of times.

It has been a week of deep reflection for fans of the Toronto Raptors and Portland Trail Blazers. When the Raptors sent Norman Powell to Portland for Gary Trent Jr. and Rodney Hood at Thursday’s NBA trade deadline, the move simultaneously required recalibration and didn’t allow for it. Things simply move too fast when transactions are involved. Even with the benefit of the Blazers being in Miami, a short drive from the Raptors in Tampa, the players involved had less than 24 hours to get acclimated with their new teams and hit the floor.

This weekend’s supermoon in Libra couldn’t have come at a better time. An off-day for both teams Saturday offered not only time for the three players to get in extra film work and 5-on-0 practice time to learn their new teams’ systems, but an additional day of processing. Powell was able to sleep in his own bed despite technically being on the road. Hood worked around some shaky practice facility WiFi to do his introductory media availability. And the two fanbases involved, at least online, shared a sort of collective co-appreciation, assuring the other that their beloved outbound players would be valued, with an implied agreement across conferences to continue rooting for their old favourites to continue thriving.

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