The Toronto Raptors will be in an interesting position when they get back on the court as their remaining games will tell a lot about the team going into the playoffs.
As we continue to wait patiently for the Toronto Raptors to get back on the court, we already know what is in store when teams gather to finish off the rest of the regular season in anticipation of the playoffs.
Unlike the NHL, the NBA is going to play eight regular-season games with 22 teams, although the Raptors won’t have to worry about competing in a play-in tournament. Instead, they will have to ensure that they get a favourable spot in the standings.
More from Tip of the Tower
- Cam Phillips making his mark on Toronto Argonauts offence
- Toronto Argonauts: 4 storylines ahead of matchup against Redblacks
- Federico Bernardeschi ready for new challenge with Toronto FC
- Toronto Argonauts overcome Roughriders in entertaining Touchdown Atlantic
- Buffalo Bills: Von Miller drawing inspiration from Bruce Smith
Not only that but given the long layoff, the Raptors will want to use the eight games as a way to ensure they can be ready for the playoffs. This is especially important given the long layoff there has been for the players.
Fortunately for Toronto, being off might have been the best thing considering the numerous injuries the team was dealing with. It’s no secret the Raptors might have had a chance to challenge for the top spot in the Eastern Conference.
Now they will be going to Florida to prepare for training camp and an eventual return to play. It will surely be strange considering Walt Disney World will be the site of the NBA’s return, but it also levels out the playing field.
It’s not known yet who will be joining the team in Fort Myers but we already have seen some reasons to be excited about the possibilities. One was Marc Gasol sharing a photo of himself seemingly losing a lot of weight during his time off, which certainly shows a lot of commitment to making sure he is in optimal shape.
Considering the injury issues Gasol has had to deal with this season, the weight loss should theoretically help in that regard and hopefully, his conditioning is improved enough where it won’t take him as much time to be in game shape.
Even veterans like Kyle Lowry and Serge Ibaka probably made the most of their time off considering they have had to play some tough minutes and the workload won’t get any easier with a limited window to get the season done by October.
You can also be sure that Nick Nurse has been spending a lot of time preparing a game plan and going over game film in anticipation for the season resuming. Nurse has become one of the brighter coaching minds in the NBA and this time off probably offered him a chance to reflect on everything that has gone on.
While there’s no telling how this layoff has impacted every team, you can bet the Raptors will try to use the eight remaining regular season games to show how they stack up.
What do you predict from the Raptors when they get back on the court? Do you expect them to be a contender? Let us know in the comments below.