The Raptors are regressing to the mean with their three-point shooting (good), and they still employ Kawhi Leonard (very good). Together, it was enough to beat the Bucks in Game 5. In each round thus far, the Raptors have reached a point where it appeared they had taken control of the series for good by finding things that worked in terms of rotation and matchup decisions.
In the first round, the Raptors had completely solved the Magic in Game 4. There was nothing the Magic could do at that point if the Raptors kept doing what they were doing — namely, they finally got their bench players rolling and that shut the only weakness they’d shown to that point.
In the second round, in Game 5 they finally hard matched Marc Gasol to Joel Embiid, and dominated the 76ers. The series should have been over then, but the Raptors abandoned that strategy in Game 6 and it bit them, hard. They course corrected in time to take Game 7 on some Kawhi heroics, much needed as the bench and other shooters were still not clicking against the 76ers length.
Against the Milwaukee Bucks in the Eastern Conference Finals, we’ve reached that point again.
Author: Daniel Hackett / Raptors HQ