Matchup: Toronto Raptors vs. Philadelphia 76ers
Records: Raptors (20-5); 76ers (17-8)
Where to Watch
Date: Wednesday, Dec. 5
Time: 8:00 p.m ET
TV: Sportsnet One
Radio: TSN 1050 Toronto
Location: Scotiabank Arena, Toronto, ON
Just two nights after suffering a close loss to the surging Denver Nuggets, the Toronto Raptors will be tested once again Wednesday when they welcome the Philadelphia 76ers. It's a battle of two of the top three teams in the Eastern Conference and the Sixers' final visit to Scotiabank Arena this season.
Monday night's loss to Denver snapped Toronto's season-high eight-game win streak. Kawhi Leonard led the way once again with a game-high 27 points, but both he (1-7) and his teammates (10-34) struggled from the 3-point line.
MORE: 4 takeaways from Raptors vs. Nuggets
That's been a trend in Toronto's five losses this season, with the team shooting 37.3 percent from the perimeter in their wins compared to only 25.0 percent in their losses.
The Raptors have already played the 76ers once this season, but it was before Philadelphia acquired four-time All-Star Jimmy Butler from Minnesota for Robert Covington and Dario Saric.
Butler is already making a difference in his new surroundings, posting averages of 18.1 points, 4.7 rebounds, 2.9 assists and 2.0 steals in the 10 games he's played with the 76ers. The team has won eight of those games - including four in a row - two of which came down to the wire with Butler playing hero at the buzzer.
Two game-winners in 8 days for Jimmy Butler.- ESPN (@espn) November 26, 2018
EXACT. SAME. SPOT. 🔥 pic.twitter.com/osRUKoIKrt
The 76ers are loaded with talent outside of Butler. Joel Embiid is playing at an MVP level so far with 27.0 points, 13.4 rebounds, 3.5 assists and 2.0 blocks per game. Ben Simmons will be looking to bounce back from a disappointing showing in Philadelphia's first matchup with Toronto this season, in which he committed a career-high 11 turnovers.
The 76ers also have one of the best shooters in the league on their roster in J.J. Redick. He's averaging a career-high 18.4 points per game this season, shooting 36.3 percent from 3-point range. Backing him up is Landry Shamet, a first round pick in this year's draft who's draining nearly two 3s per game.
MORE: Inside Pascal Siakam's breakout season
The Raptors have a lot of players they can throw at the 76ers' stars, matching Serge Ibaka and Jonas Valanciunas up with Embiid and Leonard, Danny Green, Pascal Siakam and OG Anunoby up with Simmons and Butler.
The Raptors will be without Norman Powell on Wednesday; the 76ers will be without Markelle Fultz, Justin Patton and Zhaire Smith.
Dating back to 2013, Toronto has won 19 of its last 21 meetings with Philadelphia, with 12-straight wins coming at Scotiabank Arena. The Raptors have won the season-series over the Sixers in each of the last five years.
Kawhi Leonard has never lost to the Sixers - his all-time record against them is 11-0. Against Philadelphia, Leonard has career averages of 15.6 points and 7.7 rebounds while shooting 49.6 percent from the field.
Joel Embiid has only played in Toronto twice in his NBA career. He scored 14 points in the first game and exploded for a 31-point, 11-rebound double-double in the second.
The Raptors currently have the third-best offensive rating (114.0) in the league and the eighth-best defensive rating (106.3). The 76ers aren't far behind, ranking 11th in offence (108.8) and defence (106.8).
The two teams meet again on Dec. 22, this time with the 76ers hosting the Raptors.
Last Time They Played
Date: Oct. 30, 2018
Score: Raptors 129, 76ers 112
Raptors: Kawhi Leonard - 31 points, seven points, four assists, four steals
76ers: Joel Embiid - 31 points, 11 rebounds, four assists