San Antonio Spurs vs Toronto Raptors: Keys to Game & Prediction
The San Antonio Spurs are looking to extend their winning streak to five games as they head North to take on the Toronto Raptors Wednesday night.
In their previous nine meetings, it has been all San Antonio winning eight. Spurs are coming into the game after defeating the Philadelphia 76ers 119-68. The win marked the highest margin of victory in franchise history.
LaMarcus Aldridge had a huge game as Tim Duncan, Kawhi Leonard and Manu Giniboli sat out. Aldridge scored a season high 26 points and nine rebounds.
For the Raptors, they are coming off of a 103-92 victory over Kobe Bryant and the Los Angeles Lakers. The Raptors were led by Kyle Lowry who scored 27 points on 9-of-19 shooting from the floor, including 5-of-11 from 3-point range.
When these teams met in March, Lowry was a thorn in the Spurs side as he finished with 32 points. In their last three matchups against the Spurs at home, he is averaging 14.3 on 36.6 percent shooting.
Aldridge looks to continue to his success against the Raptors. Over his last eight against them, he is averaging 26.6 points.
Mar 10, 2015; San Antonio, TX, USA; Toronto Raptors power forward Amir Johnson (behind) shoots the ball over San Antonio Spurs power forward Tim Duncan (21) during the second half at AT&T Center. Mandatory Credit: Soobum Im-USA TODAY Sports
What will be the keys for the Spurs to achieve to win their fifth straight game?
Continue Their Defensive PressureThe Raptors do have some weapons on their team and the Spurs know that. This season they are averaging over 100 points a game. Usually playing at home will inspire a team. With a 5-4 record at home this season, the Raptors defense is giving up 109 points in those losses. San Antonio will need to have the same defensive pressure as they did Monday against the Sixers. They cannot let Lowry nor DeMar DeRozan get going early on. Lowry is averaging 22 points over the last two games against San Antonio.
Feed AldridgeThe Spurs will have to look to get Aldridge going. Coming off of a huge night against the Sixers, Aldridge is coming into his own showing his scoring abilities he had when he was with Portland. Aldridge should not have a problem down on the block against the Raptors.
Get Green GoingWe all are waiting to see Green get out of a shooting slump. I would like to see the Spurs get him free off of screens to shoot more than he did against the Sixers (three shots). He is an excellent defender and will continue to play at a high-level even when he is not producing on the offensive end.