Toronto Raptors

OG Anunoby continues strong preseason form in Toronto Raptors loss to Philadelphia 76ers

Og Anunoby in preseason action against the Philadelphia 76ers
(NBA Getty Images)

The Toronto Raptors hit the road for preseason game number two, facing the Philadelphia 76ers for a second time.

The Raptors fell behind in the first half, giving up 44 points in the second quarter to trail by 16 points through two quarters.

OG Anunoby (22 points) and Fred VanVleet (17) points led the scoring for Toronto in the 125-113 loss.

Preseason will now take the Raptors to Boston for a meeting with the Celtics. Before we move on, let's take some notes from the loss to the Sixers.

One big takeaway

OG Anunoby is putting in work this preseason.

A true breakout season may have been put on hold for a year, but the 24-year-old has made a promising start to this campaign.

Anunoby tallied 22 points on the night, working on both ends of the floor in 29 minutes. The minute tally is noteworthy, with Nick Nurse likely needing to play his top rotation players significant minutes to start the regular season with the injuries to Pascal Siakam and Chris Boucher. Anunoby saw 24 minutes in the opener against the 76ers two nights earlier.

Through neccessity, Nurse may need to opt in to small lineups early in the season, with Anunoby's versatility allowing him to defend across multiple positions in flexible lineups. Despite the loss, the Raptors did look dangerous turning defence into offence with Anunoby and Precious Achiuwa at the four and five.

The 22-point night included a 4-for-7 mark from beyond the arc, backing up from his perfect 3-for-3 to start the preseason.

5 thoughts

  • What have the Raptors found in Precious Achiuwa? Known for his ability to crash the glass and play at a high intensity, Achiuwa delivered the expected putback dunk and transition bucket coming off a defensive play. It's the small flashes of a jumpshot that draws intrigue. With Siakam missing an extended period to start the season Achiuwa is in the box seat for a starting role and that should be a whole bunch of fun.

  • Consistent Freddy ready to roll again. VanVleet and Goran Dragic manned the back court for the second consecutive game and while Dragic struggled to find his shot (0-for-4 from the field), VanVleet put up 17 points on 7-for-13 shooting in 29 minutes. VanVleet averaged a career high 19.6 points per game last season. It would be a safe bet to assume he will top that mark in 2022.
  • Scottie Barnes dimes are going to be a highlight for Raptors fans this season. The rookie delivered again in this one, dishing out five assists in 26 minutes.

  • Malachi Flynn added 13 points off the bench in 18 minutes in this one. Dragic has been managed through the last few regular seasons, largely coming off the bench. It would be a massive boost for the Raptors rotation is Flynn can provide a consistent scoring punch at the point.
  • Yuta Watanabe missed this one with a calf injury. Pregame Nurse said the injury would likely not keep him out of opening night. This is good news for a number of reasons. One of them being that it could be a hint that Watanabe will be on the roster for the regular season, which seems like the right decision.

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