On Monday, the Toronto Raptors slumped to a defeat to the Philadelphia 76ers. As a result, coach Nick Nurse will need to have a huge sit and think about his squad rotation. At the same time, people will have to assess their own odds for the upcoming NBA games.
Jimmy Butler had 30 points and 11 rebounds as the 76ers leveled the best-of-seven series at 1-1 with a 94-89 win at Scotiabank Arena, ending their 14-game losing streak in Toronto.
Nurse faced some criticism for not using Kawhi Leonard until three minutes of the fourth quarter had passed, while Marc Gasol and Danny Green also missed large parts of the final quarter.
With the Toronto bench combining for 2-of-11 shooting for the game, Nurse concedes he may have to rethink his strategy moving forward.
“Yeah, I think we always take a look at it,” he told reporters when asked about his rotation. “We’re always thinking about possible adjustments to it or changes or whatever and this will certainly give us cause to reflect on that for sure.
“What we come up with for Game 3, I don’t know yet. You know there’s always little things you wish you changed – left this guy in longer or put this guy in sooner or whatever.
“But I think we played pretty well with this rotation, we wanted to try and stay with it as much as we can.”
On the problems Butler posed his team, Nurse replied: “Listen, Jimmy Butler is a gamer.
“He wasn’t going to be quiet this whole series, this guy can play, he’s been in the playoffs, et cetera.
“We have to look at some matchups, see how matchups work, did we like who we have on him? Did we like coverages on him? Which did we like? Which can we improve on?”
Their next tie will be on the 3rd of May and with the scores tied at 1-1, the Toronto Raptors will be itching to go one ahead.
Without Leonard in the mix, Toronto only had 25 per cent of the shots for the half of the gam. Most NBA teams could make more buckets if you blindfolded them and had a guy stand under the rim shouting. Toronto were trailing by as many as 19 points early in the game. They could only muster around 38 points during that half and the Toronto Raptors paid the price.