The losing streak continues.
The Toronto Raptors got a career-high 31 points out of Gary Trent Jr, as well as five steals and four blocks from Fred VanVleet, but it wasn't enough. In losing to the Oklahoma City Thunder, the Raptors have now lost four straight, dropping them to 18-30 on the season.
Svi Mykhailiuk led the Thunder with 22 points while Moses Brown recorded a 20-point, 11-rebound double-double.
For more on the game, some takeaways...
1. Kyle Lowry to miss some time
Lowry was ruled out of this game with a right foot infection.
It's unknown when exactly he will return, but Raptors head coach Nick Nurse said before the game that Lowry is expected to be out for a week to 10 days. That means he could miss Toronto's next five games.
Aron Baynes got the start in Lowry's place against the Thunder.
2. Welcome to the team, Gary Trent Jr.
This was by far and away Trent Jr.'s best game yet as a member of the Raptors.
In his debut, Trent Jr. scored eight points on 4-for-11 shooting from the field. He then scored six points on 2-for-10 shooting from the field in his second game, followed by 15 points in 6-for-15 shooting in his third game.
Against the Thunder, Trent Jr. had a team-high 20 points on 8-for-10 shooting from the field and 4-for-6 from 3-point range ... at the half.
He came out of the gates strong, sparking a run in the first quarter to help the Raptors take control of the game.
GTJ HOOPIN' pic.twitter.com/2pH2WRmwGT- Toronto Raptors (@Raptors) April 1, 2021
He then poured in 10 more points in the second quarter.
🤟🏽🤟🏽🤟🏽🤟🏽🤟🏽🤟🏽🤟🏽 pic.twitter.com/GhuBDvn7ik- Toronto Raptors (@Raptors) April 1, 2021
Trent Jr. scored 11 points the rest of the way, bringing his total to 31 for the game. It ultimately wasn't enough for the Raptors to come away with the win, but they would've been at a complete loss without him.
3. Watch your head, Svi!
It's not every day that OG Anunoby dunks on (around?) someone.
that's cool, @OAnunoby pic.twitter.com/IwNkFc6fSy- Toronto Raptors (@Raptors) April 1, 2021
4. Another injury
At halftime, the Raptors announced that Rodney Hood sustained a strained right hip and would not return. X-rays were negative, but Nurse said postgame that they think it's "fairly serious."
5. Gary Trent Jr. to the rescue
The third quarter was once again a struggle for the Raptors, but they maintained a lead going into the fourth quarter thanks to - who else? - Trent Jr.
Trailing by two points, Trent Jr. drew a shooting foul with 5.5 seconds remaining in the period. He went 1-for-2 from the free throw line but made up for it by coming up with the steal on the inbounds and knocking down a 3-pointer at the buzzer.
.@gtrentjr WANTS IT pic.twitter.com/uEwTZuk4SU- Toronto Raptors (@Raptors) April 1, 2021
6. An ice cold fourth quarter
The Raptors went from scoring 32 points in the first quarter and 35 points in the second quarter to 22 points in the third quarter and 14 points in the fourth quarter.
The Raptors shot 6-for-25 from the field as a team in the final frame. VanVleet went 1-for-6, Trent Jr. went 2-for-7 and Pascal Siakam went 0-for-2.
Toronto came up with a few key stops when the game was still in the balance...
Need it pic.twitter.com/KIVpE9PxGA- Toronto Raptors (@Raptors) April 1, 2021
...but it ran out of juice.
A tough ending to what was a very winnable game.
7. The game within the game
Wondering how the Thunder put up 113 points against the Raptors without Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (right foot plantar fasciitis) and Luguentz Dort (concussion protocol)? A couple of reasons.
One, the Thunder dominated the glass. Not only did they outrebound the Raptors 64-35 - yes, you read that right - they pulled down 19 offensive rebounds, which helped them score 30 second-chance points.
Brown (7) and Isaiah Roby (4) combined for 11 of Oklahoma City's 19 season-best offensive rebounds.
The follow!@roby_isaiah | #ThunderUp pic.twitter.com/3YkZcNevNH- OKC THUNDER (@okcthunder) April 1, 2021
Two, the Thunder shot the lights out, going 14-for-32 from 3-point range.
Mykhailiuk was responsible for four of those 3-pointers, but Darius Miller gave them a scoring punch off the bench with three 3-pointers. Miller finished with 11 points, making for only his second double-digit scoring game of the season.
Knockdown 🎯@Sviat_10 | #ThunderUp pic.twitter.com/hrkrTHNra5- OKC THUNDER (@okcthunder) April 1, 2021
8. A forgettable month
The Raptors went 1-13 (.071) in the month of March.
The good? That's not the worst month in franchise history. The bad? It's not far off from the worst.
Lowest win percentage in a full calendar month: Raptors history- Sportsnet Stats (@SNstats) April 1, 2021
November 2005 .063
November 1997 .067
March 2021 .071
April 1998 .091
April can't come soon enough for the Raptors.
9. What's next
The Raptors return to Tampa for a four-game homestand. They'll kick it off against the Golden State Warriors (Friday, April 2), followed by matchups with the Washington Wizards (Monday, April 5), Los Angeles Lakers (Tuesday, April 6) and Chicago Bulls (Thursday, April 8).
Catch you then.
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