The Raptors hope to have Rudy Gay back in the lineup, as they look to end a four-game losing streak when they welcome the playoff bound Hawks to the Air Canada Centre.
Start time: 7:00 PM ET
Probable starting lineups
Toronto: Kyle Lowry, DeMar DeRozan, Rudy Gay, Amir Johnson, Jonas Valanciunas
Atlanta: Jeff Teague, Dahntay Jones, Josh Smith, Johan Petro, Al Horford
Toronto: Rudy Gay will play. Kyle Lowry is questionable. Andrea Bargnani is out.
Atlanta: Devin Harris, Lou Williams and Zaza Pachulia are out.
- With Kyle Lowry reportedly suffering from a knee issue and Rudy Gay a candidate to be shut down for the season with his lingering back issues, the Raptors really might find themselves in the “chase” for the bottom three soon enough. With Gay and Lowry in the lineup, the Raptors will win a game here and there to remain in the 6-10 range in terms of likely draft landing spots. But without those two guys, especially Lowry, winning more than a game might be challenge.
- The Raptors enter play tonight knowing that any combination of Bucks wins and Raps losses that adds up to four officially eliminated them from playoff contention. Meanwhile, they sit just 3.5 games ahead of Cleveland, who currently holds the third-worst record in the league. Yup, it’s late March in another lost season.
- Quincy Acy was recalled from the D-League on Tuesday and I’ve gotta say, I’m actually looking forward to watching him play over these final few weeks, assuming there are minutes for him from time to time. Acy showed some flashes in the middle of the season of being a little more NBA-ready that I originally assumed and I maintain that he can become a regular bench forward for the Raptors in the future, so there is nothing to lose by giving him playing time at this point.
- The Hawks are in an interesting playoff positioning race right now in the Eastern Conference. They’re currently in 6th place, just .002 percentage points behind Chicago for fifth and just 2.5 games behind Brooklyn for fourth, but they’re also just 2.5 games ahead of seventh-place Boston.
- With Kyle Korver leading their three-point barrage, the Hawks come in to Toronto with the fourth-best three-point shooting percentage in the league (37.8%), while the Raptors boast a middle of the pack three-point defence and a 25th-ranked three-point shooting percentage of their own (34.1%). In other words, don’t be surprised if Atlanta’s shooting from behind the arc is the difference in this game.
- Oliver will have your post-game thoughts later tonight as we settle back into a regular rhythm here at RaptorBlog.