Toronto waltzed into Dallas and simply owned the court, particularly that painted area around the Dallas basket in a 127-116 win.
A really nice night for a number of Raptors individually and a big boost for the team with probably it’s most complete win of the year against a very good side. Here are the individual grades for the night.
Pascal Siakam A+ — Siakam had the perfect response to the groundswell of opinions that there was no longer any need for the only All-NBA player on the roster. The Barnes is great, Siakam has to go crowd was silenced by his season high 31 points and 12 rebounds as he made 15 of his 25 shots. The lone blemish on his night was getting to the line just four times and making only one of those or the numbers would have been even bigger.
OG Anunoby A+ — That’s back-to-back stellar games for Anunoby with huge impact on both ends of the floor. He contained Luka Doncic, keeping him at 31 points on 11-of 26 shooting while pumping in 26 of his own. Whether it’s a sneaky fast guard or a bruising big, a guy who scores inside or a guy who scores outside, Anunoby has the versatility to lock him down.
Scottie Barnes A — Barnes may not have filled the basket like he did in San Antonio, but he didn’t have to with Siakam scoring at will as he danced through the Dallas paint. Instead, Barnes was doing everything else pulling down 14 boards, six at the offensive end for extra possessions, handing out seven dimes while piling up defensive stats like four steals and two blocks. The man doesn’t always have to score to be impactful.
Jakob Poeltl B — A bit of a quiet night for Poeltl as he played just 21 minutes, but this wasn’t a big man’s night with the Mavs getting up 41 three-pointers. Poeltl still had six rebounds, three at either end and a couple of steals. He was solid as usual.
Dennis Schroder B — We keep having the feeling we are under appreciating what Schroder does. The lead point guard is happy to set the table for others and when the offence starts to bog down is fully capable of turning on the jets and getting some easy buckets. Again, just a steady hand on the tiller getting that offence in a rhythm, not to mention his own defensive job on Kyrie Irving who was limited to 22.
Gary Trent Jr. B —With a player who puts the time and effort into his shot, you knew it was just a matter of time before Trent had a game like this one, busting out for four triples on 4-of-8 shooting from three. He hasn’t been terrible of late with a couple in each of his past two games, but this was easily his best and most efficient shooting night of the season.
Malachi Flynn B — The confidence Flynn is getting from his new coach and starting point guard — Schroder — is shining through on the court these days. He’s been a spark off the bench for a few consecutive games now after a rough start to the year. Seeing a couple of three balls go down is just the gravy.
Chris Boucher B — A great response from Boucher who did not see the floor in the last game. In 15 minutes, he made all four shots he took and provided some of that Boucher pick-me-up that only he can.
Otto Porter Jr B– — Second consecutive game with minutes from Porter and while it might not have been a pretty one statistically, the team was still a plus-9 in his 15 minutes, tops off the bench along with Flynn. He’s like a safety blanket out there ensuring the second unit minutes don’t have to be something the Raptors just survive.
THE OTHER GUYS: Dallas was down its best rim protector in rookie Dereck Lively II and it opened up a major hole in what he Mavs do defensively. Toronto feasted in the paint where they scored a stunning 72 points. That prevented even their elite offence led by Doncic from staying with Toronto. This team is going to live and die with the three ball and they might just have enough shooters to live that way with the cast they have assembled around Doncic. This game felt more like a slip than the direction this team was headed. Expect better things ahead from them.