Wait, They’re Still Good?

Toronto Raptors are one of the best teams in the NBA, even without Kawhi Leonard

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Flickr user RMTip21

Toronto Raptors claw logo.

Going into the NBA season almost every basketball analyst doubted that the defending champions, the Toronto Raptors’, ability to compete in the Eastern Conference. Even though the Raptors won the championship last year, people were expecting them to be at best a mediocre team because they lost superstar Kawhi Leonard. Yet to the surprise of everybody the Raptors are not only comfortable in the playoffs, but have a chance to make it back to the finals.

So far this year the Raptors are 36-14 and are the second seed in the eastern conference behind the Milwaukee Bucks. Though they don’t have Kawhi Leonard who carried the Raptors 

Last year throughout the postseason, Pascal Siakam stepped up this year and became the go to player on the team. So far this year Siakam is averaging 23.7ppg, 7.6trb, and 3.4ast. Which is 11.6ppg, 1,9trd,1.2ast higher than his career average. 

Another reason why the Raptors are still one of the best teams in the league is because of their overall depth on the roster. Unlike last year the Raptors are not dependent on one player, but have multiple players who contribute on a high level. This year the Raptors have 5 players who are averaging over 15ppg. They also have 6 players averaging more than a steal per game. With the Raptors playing this type of team basketball when it comes to the playoffs they are going to be impossible to prepare for because teams are going to have to focus on multiple players instead of one. 

This is why the Raptors even when losing one of the best players in the league last year are still in contention of winning the NBA finals yet again.