Toronto was able to take a 2-1, as they should have with the shortened roster of Golden State. Game 4 will be another pivotal game, but this time Klay Thompson will return. Kevin Durant is ruled out, but we have to think he is back within the next few games. Toronto pulling a 3-1 lead would be massive heading back to Toronto for Game 5. There were not many changes from Toronto in Game 3, as their shooting carried them. They were able to clamp down defensively, letting Curry have his way, but nobody else was able to get going. Game 4 will be a bit different, but Toronto is in a good spot to steal another game on the road.
Game 3 Raptors Recap
After a horrendous shooting performance in Game 2, Toronto bounced back to shoot over 50% from the field and over 40% from three. The only real negative for the Raptors was allowing 13 offensive boats, but overall the rebounding battle was dead even. Toronto also had 30 assists, which was five more than Golden State. While the Warriors were short-handed, the Raptors made life tough on them. They held them to under 40% from the field, and Golden State shot just 33% from the field.
Kawhi Leonard led all scorers on the Raptors with 30 points. It was a collective effort, as six players were in double-digit scoring. The Warriors had just three. Danny Green shot 6-10 from three, and Kyle Lowry was 5-9. We have seen the polar opposites for shooting from those two in the first few games. Marc Gasol was second on the team in usage, and his ability to get around Bogut and Cousins was recognized early.
Raptors Starting Lineup
Kyle Lowry, PG – Kyle Lowry has been alternating between good and bad games so far in the postseason, and Game 3 was a good one. He shot 8-16 and 5-9 from three. He was +14 in 43 minutes, scoring 23 points. With Shaun Livingston starting, Lowry saw 25 possessions against him, and had plenty of success with eight points and four assists. These guards will have a tougher time with Thompson back, as long as he is 100%. Lowry has had issues with foul trouble in the series, but was able to keep them at bay. Stephen Curry had a lot of possessions on Lowry, and was torched for 17 points.
Danny Green, SG – Danny Green held Steph Curry to 3-9 shooting on 18 possessions, and also was lights out from three point land. He shot 6-10, and continues to be a three point machine in the finals. His minutes were still limited due to foul trouble. Running his offense against Curry for 29 possessions was a plus for him. He went three of five from three with Curry guarding him. The backcourt will change a bit with matchups, resulting in more one-on-one matchups from the first two games.
Kawhi Leonard, SF – Kawhi Leonard was able to have his way in Game 3, he scored 30 points, but also dished out six assists and had two blocks and two steals. Leonard also got to the line and was 10-11. Draymond Green guarded Leonard for most of the game, and it was both him and Alfonzo McKinnie who Leonard did most of his damage against. Leonard held Andre Iguodala and Green to five combined points when defending. Leonard continues to dominate in usage for Toronto, and is an MVP front runner for the Raptors.
Pascal Siakam, PF – It was a quiet game for Pascal Siakam in comparison to the other players, but he had a strong influence. He was +22 in 39 minutes, posting an 18-9-6 line. Siakam was able to keep Draymond Green in check for the night, holding him to four points and two assists in 38 possessions. The Warriors threw a few defenders against Siakam, yet Green was able to do his best, but didn’t guard him enough. Siakam should see more Green with Thompson back, which would be troubling.
Marc Gasol, C – The big man struggled in Game 2, but came back big for Game 3. He had ten points in 20 possessions against DeMarcus Cousins, who have traded off big games. Cousins also struggled against Gasol’s defense going 0-4 scoring his only two points at the line. Gasol should be rested for Friday’s game, given he played just 26 minutes, posting a 17-7-4 line. Look for him to have another plus matchup if Cousins is gassed again.
Despite winning 123-109, they never could fully pull away until the last few minutes. This meant the starters still had to play a full dose of minutes. Serge Ibaka was able to play 22 minutes, and he had six blocks and two steals in that span. Fred VanVleet had an 11 point outing, with three steals. Given Danny Green and Kyle Lowry’s play, we didn’t need to see much of Norman Powell. However, if they struggle from the field or in fouls, Powell remains the first guy to fill in outside of VanVleet.