Three Reasons Why The Raptors Won the NBA Championship
Looking back at the past NBA season, there were a lot of surprises such as the Lakers not making the playoffs, Denver earning the number two seed and the Bucks being named the NBA’s best regular season team to name a few. But none were as shocking as the fact that the Toronto Raptors were crowned as NBA champions. After all they went up against Steph Curry, Kevin Durant and Co. Today I will be talking about three of the biggest reasons that the Raptors won the NBA championship.
Blog – 1
The first reason why the Toronto Raptors won their first ever championship against the juggernaut Golden State Warriors in the 2018-2019 NBA season was because of Masai Ujiri’s major gamble to trade star shooting guard Demar Derozan and back-up center Jacob Poeltl for former finals MVP and two-time defensive player of the year Kawhi Leonard and 3 and D specialist Danny Green. First let me inform you about why this trade happens because clearly Kawhi Leonard and Danny Green outmatch Derozan and Poeltl. After all, Poeltl was lucky to get 20 minutes on most nights and Demar Derozan’s range was basically limited to within the three-point arc. But in the 2016-2017 season Kawhi Leonard suffered a gruesome injury in the playoffs and the next season he only played nine games. Now most of the Spurs association kept the whole situation under wraps so it really was not until after the trade that we found out what happened. So basically, Kawhi got re-injured in one of his games back and he demanded a trade in offseason because of the way the Spurs medical staff handled his health issue. But clearly this whole situation was for the betterment of the Raptors because after losing three years in a row in the playoffs to LeBron James and the Cavaliers, they beat the Golden State Warriors in the NBA Finals in six games.
Blog – 2
Another reason about why the Toronto Raptors were so successful in the past season is because of the rise of Cameroonian player Paskal Siakam. His stats increased in every area except for blocks and it was only a .1 percent decrease which is not much. He has quickly turned from a role player to a star and there are not many players better than in him in transition leading him to becoming the forerunner for the most improved player of the year award. He played a huge role in the playoffs because of his ability to guard all positions, a rare talent to have. When Kawhi was on the bench, he had no trouble pushing the pace and creating shots for others all while guarding the other team’s best player. He has a high motor and makes other teams fight for shots and rebounds. When he was drafted, he was compared to a longer Luc Mbah a Moute who in his prime was a decent three and D player. He has long surpassed those expectations and fans now expect him to be a superstar who leads his own team as he has already helped lead his team to a NBA championship in just the third season of his career.
Blog – 3
For our first two reasons, we talked about individuals but this next one is more of a team effort. Toronto ranked top ten in both offense and defense. They were ranked number 5 in defense over the regular season and they tightened up their defense and earned the number 1 spot in the playoffs. Meanwhile they were ranked number seven on offense over the whole season including playoffs. This way, even when there offense is struggling, there defense can keep them in the game. Even though most of the credit still goes to the two man tandem of Siakam and Leonard, the rest of the team was still good without Siakam and Leonard. You can thank Fred VanVleet, Kyle Lowry, Serge Ibaka, and Marc Gasol for the numerous great games had for the Raptors to win when Kawhi Leonard and Paskal Siakam were struggling. This even happen in some of the games in the finals such as game 1,2, and game 6. And some of the bench players such as Norman Powell also stepped in up there game to accomplish their mission.