Canada’s Nembhard leads Pacers past Raptors

TORONTO – The Toronto Raptors fell flat against their conference rivals despite Pascal Siakam and Fred VanVleet each achieving double-doubles.

Siakam led all scorers with 31 points and added 10 rebounds as the unmanned Raptors lost 118-114 to the Indiana Pacers on Wednesday. VanVleet tallied his 28 points and 11 assists, but was still critical of Toronto’s performance.

Reviewing the final box score, VanVleet said, “Overall, it was low energy, low completion, lacked execution, and didn’t really try to do what it set out to do.” Watching the game, looking at the stats, I was completely beaten in almost every aspect.”

Jakob Poeltl had 23 points and eight rebounds as the Raptors (35-38) broke their seven-game home winning streak.

Toronto’s lineup included forward Precious Achiuwa (right hamstring strain), Scotty Barnes (left wrist pain), Joe Wieskamp (right hamstring strain), and guard Gary Trent Jr. (right elbow). stiffness) were all brought out, so they dried up.

The story continues under the ad

“Obviously we missed them today, but that’s no excuse. We could have won this game,” said Chris Boucher, who had 11 points and six rebounds off the bench. I think there were a couple of breaks that went in the opposite direction that didn’t help us.”

Andrew Nemhard of nearby Aurora, Ontario, gave Indiana a double-double (33-40) with 25 points and 10 assists. Myles Turner said he had 16 points and he had 7 boards.

Related Videos

It was an important victory for the Pacers, who won the Chicago Bulls in the East standings. After Chicago lost 116-91 to the Philadelphia 76ers late Wednesday, Indiana finished 1.5 games behind the Bulls for his spot in the final play-in of the conference.

The Raptors remain ninth in the East, half a game up to Chicago and two games behind the Pacers.

The story continues under the ad

“It was one of those things,” VanVleet said of the loss. “You have to move on. You have to have short-term memory and focus on what’s in front of you.”

O’Shea Brissett of Mississauga, Ontario, Benedict Maturin of Montreal and Nemhad started in Indiana. He was the first time in an NBA game that three Canadian-born players started on his one team since starters were officially tracked in 1970-71.

Pacers head coach Rick Carlyle said, “It’s so cool to see that happen in Toronto.”

“I thought Brissett did what he does. He energized us, rebounded and scored the first five points of the game. It was great.”

OG Anunoby made two free throws to give Toronto an 87-86 lead with 9:43 remaining. Boucher followed suit with a jumper and a free throw to give the Raptors a four-point advantage.

Buddy Hield sank a field goal and Jordan Nuwolla made two free throws to equalize for Indiana.

After the two teams traded points for a few minutes, a short 6-2 Pacers run with about six minutes remaining helped the visitors begin to pull away.

Turner made a driving layup and sank the ensuing free throw, betting Indiana for a 107-102 lead and forcing a timeout for the Raptors with 3:28 remaining.

The story continues under the ad

Siakam hit a free throw and a jumper from under the rim to cut the lead in two. Maturin followed with two free throws and VanVleet responded in pairs.

“Just play hard and play the game the right way,” Maturin said of the 7 points in the fourth quarter.

“Putting pressure on the rim opens up a lot for me. I got to the line and was able to make some good decisions.”

Turner hit a jump shot as 19,800 fans at Scotiabank Arena chanted “DE-FENCE.” On the other side of the floor, Poeltl missed his two free throws, allowing neither team to score on their next possession, allowing the Pacers to kill the clock.

Nemhardt’s 3-point shot with 32.5 seconds left extended Indiana’s lead to seven. After the Raptors’ timeout, Siakam hit two free throws to put Toronto five points ahead of 25.8.

TJ McConnell responded with two free throws for Indiana and Boucher sank two. McConnell, who ran around the court to kill time, was fouled with 3.1 seconds remaining. He hit both shots from his stripes for Charity, with Boucher hitting his 3-pointer as time expired.

The story continues under the ad

UP NEXT — Toronto will host the Detroit Pistons on Friday.

The Pacers continue their four-game trip with a stop in Boston on Friday.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published on March 22, 2023.

© 2023 The Canadian Press

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button