Toronto Raptors (2-0; 2-0 ATS; 2-0 O/U) vs. San Antonio Spurs (2-0; 1-1 ATS; 1-1 O/U)
NBA: Monday, October 23, 2017 at 8:30pm EST
Line: San Antonio -2
The Toronto Raptors will begin a tough six-game road trip against the San Antonio Spurs Monday night from the AT&T Center. The Raptors easily defeated the 76ers by a 128-94 score on Saturday night, and the Spurs topped the Bulls 87-77 in their latest action. The Spurs defeated the Raptors in both meetings last season.
Raptors Explode for 128 Points in Win vs. 76ers
The Toronto Raptors have made easy work of their first two weaker opponents this season. They crushed the 76ers 128-94 in their latest action on Saturday night to improve to 2-0 on the season. Toronto shot 47.2% from the field and limited the 76ers to a 39% efficiency. DeMar DeRozan was tremendous, collecting 30 points on 8 for 12 shooting, and went 14 for 16 from the line. The 28-year old shooting guard was cold in the Raptors season opener, scoring only 11 points. DeRozan averaged a solid 26 points in two games against the Spurs last season. Serge Ibaka also had a big night in the win, recording 21 points and drilled five three-pointers. The 28-year old power forward joined the Raptors last year in a trade and should thrive with a strong Raptors team. Ibaka features a 51.6 career field goal percentage.
The Raptors are again one of the stronger teams in the Eastern Conference led by Lowry and DeRozan and will not be easy to beat, especially when DeRozan is on his game. Toronto went 23-18 on the road last season. The Raptors are scoring 122.5 points through their first two games, ranking them second in the NBA. Toronto is conceding 97 points, placing them 10th overall.
Spurs Play Stifling Defense in Win Over Bulls
The San Antonio Spurs played stifling defense in their solid 87-77 road win over the Bulls on Saturday night. The Spurs shot 41% from the field and limited the Bulls to 37.8% shooting, and out-rebounded Chicago 63-51. LeMarcus Aldridge was outstanding, sinking 28 points on 12 for 24 shooting and also added ten rebounds. The 32-year old power forward was solid in the season opener as well, scoring 25 points in a win over the Timberwolves. Aldridge averaged 22 points in two games against the Raptors last season. Newcomer Rudy Gay added 12 points off the bench in the win after scoring 14 points in the season opener. The 31-year old small forward came over after only playing 30 games with the Kings last season. The Spurs are playing without their best player Kawhi Leonard who could be out for at least another few weeks with an injured quad, and Tony Parker is out until December
The Spurs are again a well-rounded team and are very strong defensively similar to year’s past. They finished with the second-best home record in the NBA last year, going 31-10. San Antonio is averaging 97 points through two games, ranking them 24th overall. The Spurs are only allowing an average of 88 points, good for first in the NBA.
The Toronto Raptors are:
- 4-0 ATS in their last 4 games following a straight up win of more than 10 points.
- 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games following a straight up win.
- 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games following an ATS win.
The San Antonio Spurs are:
- 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games overall.
- 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games playing on one day of rest.
- 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games when their opponent scores 100 or more points in their previous game.
I am siding with the Raptors in this one. The absence of Kawhi Leonard will be tough for the Spurs to overcome against this potent Raptors team. The Spurs are struggling to hit three’s, posting an NBA worst 27.3% clip from beyond the arc, and although that won’t continue for long, the Raptors are strong defensively. Furthermore, the Spurs only scored 87 points against a very weak Bulls team in their latest action, while Toronto scored 117 points against the Bulls in their season opener and 128 points against the 76ers on Saturday night.