It’s been a rollercoaster start for the Toronto Raptors, who currently sit at 9-9 and looking for more consistency.
There are a lot of positives on this roster, but they haven’t shown much away from home, with a 3-7 road record compared to 6-2 at Scotiabank Arena. That will need to change if they hope to climb the Eastern Conference standings, currently sitting in a tie for seventh.
The East is largely bunched together, with the Boston Celtics and Milwaukee Bucks separating themselves from the pack early on. That’s not surprising, but there are several teams on equal footing, so it’s hard to distinguish where the Raptors sit in that group.
Can they be considered among the upper echelon at their peak? It’s possible. Still, they’ve fallen short of that mark thus far and could be due for some positive regression when Nick Nurse has a fully healthy roster.
The Raptors were expected to take a step forward, with Scottie Barnes improving on his Rookie of the Year season. Opposing teams have a book on Barnes now, and he will have to make adjustments to become a franchise-altering presence on the court.
With inconsistencies surrounding the sophomore forward, Pascal Siakam has shouldered the load, playing at a superstar level. He’s averaged 24.8 points, 9.4 rebounds, and 7.7 assists per game, leading the Raptors in each. Many questioned whether he had another level to his game, and he’s proving that he can at least be considered a high-end player on a quality team. Still, Siakam has been injured since November 6, coinciding with the Raptors’ recent struggles. It’s uncertain how soon he’ll return from injury, but Siakam’s return will be a big boost to the Raptors.
Raptors Futures Odds
Toronto boasts +1800 odds to win the Eastern Conference, the eighth-shortest odds. Is there value in that number? It’s hard to say, but this roster is definitively more talented than their record shows. If they can get healthy, paired with one of the best coaches in the league, there’s likely some value in sprinkling some money on the Raptors’ futures to win the East.
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