Toronto Temperature: Stingy defense and key bench contributions lead the way

The Raptors have picked it up. The centres are playing well, Fred VanVleet is back on track, and the series against the Bucks is tied 2-2. Let’s take the Temperature. Was that a week? That went by fast. The Raptors played four games in all, with the respective home teams winning through all four contests in the Eastern Conference Finals. Milwaukee took care of business at the Fiserv Forum, squeaking by in Game 1 and winning emphatically in Game 2. The Raptors, almost strangely, followed the same formula at Scotiabank Arena, winning a double-overtime thriller in Game 3, and blowing out the Bucks with a big bench performances in Game 4.
The Raptors are two games away from the Finals. That’s pretty hot. Let’s get right into it and take the Toronto Temperature.
Who’s Hot

Kawhi Leonard’s Defense

Kawhi Leonard had his second lowest point total of the playoffs (19 points) in Game 4 but it in no way spoke to his floor game. He was smothering on defense, recording four steals and two blocks, and he always seemed to be in the right place at the right time, especially guarding Giannis Antetokounmpo.
The way Leonard defends Antetokounmpo is impressive. You …

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Author: Ben_Scott / Raptors HQ

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