Students versus masters: Raptors ready to take fast pace to Warriors

LeBron James

LeBron James

Wright had been playing big minutes, but with the Raptors blowing out the Cavs, he saw his minutes reduced on Thursday.

Things do not get easier for the Cavaliers as the defending champions, the Golden State Warriors, are in town this coming Monday.

Our early models for Saturday project Wright for 20.0 FanDuel points at a cost of $5,700.

But Cleveland was indeed competitive for a change, almost rebounding from a season-worst 34-point loss Thursday in Toronto (and 28-point loss Monday in Minneapolis).

The leading man for the Raptors is shooting guard DeMar DeRozan, who is as underrated and overlooked individually as his team is by mainstream fans and media. That they struggle and their stars fall apart under the pressure in the postseason, and the rest of the team can't pick it up when DeRozan and Lowry don't have it, while the stars will force their game and try to simply play through the defenses created to stop them.

One of the downfalls of Cleveland during that quarter was their 32 percent shooting from the field, while their defense allowed IN to hit for five 3-pointers.

Those circumstances didn't seem to faze the Raptors, who have won six of their last seven despite playing their third game in four nights.

There will undoubtedly be plenty of questions asked about Cleveland's defence over the next three months, and about whether they can make another run through the post-season with an aging roster that's struggling to stop anybody, let alone the best the league has to offer.

TIMBERWOLVES 118, KNICKS 108: Karl-Anthony Towns fell one assist shy of his second career triple-double, scoring 23 points and grabbing 15 rebounds for Minnesota at Minneapolis. Forward Serge Ibaka will return for Toronto after serving a one-game suspension for fighting Miami's James Johnson. As a result, IN faced a 24-6 deficit with 4:48 remaining IN the first quarter. The Cavs can certainly ramp up the effort in the second half of the season and improve some of their defensive woes, but at the moment, the Cavs wouldn't have much to lose on defense if they did play Sullivan.

Isaiah Thomas and Dwyane Wade did not play for Cleveland, each getting a rest. They continued to chip away a bit at Cleveland's lead and managed to cut the deficit to 58-44 at the end of the second quarter.

Nemanja Bjelica ignited a fourth-quarter burst with a 3-pointer as Minnesota broke open a tight game en route to a victory over NY in Minneapolis.

In the process, he's accumulated three titles, four MVPs and 13 All-Star nods, putting his name into the conversation of greatest basketball players to ever live alongside the likes of Michael Jordan, Wilt Chamberlain, Bill Russell, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Magic Johnson and Larry Bird.

Tyronn Lue of the Cleveland Cavaliers at American Airlines Center on November 11, 2017 in Dallas, Texas.

"They're still a good team, they still play hard, the young guys play hard", Lue said in pregame. The main threat for the Suns is guard Devin Booker, who is averaging 19.1 points per game. "We've got to be locked in to what we're doing and be professional".

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