Matchup: Toronto Raptors @ New Orleans Pelicans
Records: Raptors (46-19); Pelicans (30-37)
Where to Watch
Date: March 8
TV: SN1 / SN
Radio: SN 590
Location: Smoothie King Center, New Orleans, LA
The Raptors haven't started the month quite like they wanted to. After winning a hard-fought battle with the Portland Trail Blazers, they're in jeopardy of losing three in a row for just the second time this season. The last time the Raps went on a three-game skid, it was the Pelicans who started it back in November.
At this point in the season and as well as Milwaukee is playing, Toronto might be starting to concede that it will be the second seed in the East. Load management has been the 13th man for the team this season, and it's been a while since we've seen the roster at full strength. On the bright side, this is the start of the last road trip the Raptors will have to pack their bags for.
The next two "road trips" they take are no more than two games.
With Jrue Holiday and E'Twaun Moore already out - and Anthony Davis on a minutes restriction, this would be the perfect game for the Raptors to get out of the gate early.
Alraeady down Jrue Holiday, the Pelicans just announced E'Twaun Moore is now out with a recurrent left quadriceps contusion. That's two of the Pelicans' starters out for game tonight with Raptors.- Mike Ganter (@Mike_Ganter) March 8, 2019
The Smoothie King Center doesn't quite offer the most intimidating road atmosphere and Toronto needs to take advantage of that to get back on the winning track.
The Raptors' bench has been under the microscope as of late, especially Jeremy Lin who hasn't quite got it going since arriving after the trade deadline. He's shooting just 30 percent from the field in 20 minutes per game through his first seven games with the team. Could this be the game that gets Lin going?
MORE: Breaking down Marc Gasol's first month with the Raptors
If not Lin, then perhaps it's Marc Gasol who steps up. He's already faced the Pelicans three times this season and finished with 22 points in his last game against New Orleans back on January 21.
- Raptors Assistant Coach Jamaal Magloire played for New Orleans from 2002-05…In 187 games, Magloire averaged 11.9 points and 9.5 rebounds…Magloire represented New Orleans in the 2004 NBA All-Star game, the lone All-Star selection of his career.
- The Raptors have only four games remaining on their schedule against teams that are currently above .500 (one vs. Detroit, two vs. Oklahoma City and one vs. Brooklyn)
- Raptors are 11-1 when they allow less than 100 points
- Raptors are 20-1 when they shoot 50% or better from the field
Last Time they played...
Date: Nov 12 2018
Score: Pelicans 126, Raptors 110
Pelicans: E'Twaun Moore - 30 points, 13-18 from the field
Raptors: Pascal Siakam - 22 points, three blocks