What To Expect From The 21/22 Raptors?

Source: NBA.com

Toronto's 27th NBA season is underway, and already there are some promising signs, most of the important of which is being able to play on home soil. Pending on how you looked at last season, it was either a surprising effort or a disappointing ending to what was truly a weird season for the Raps. So let’s look in our crystal ball and see what this season could have in store for us!

Siakam will be sidelined for the early part of the season with shoulder surgery, but to say he struggled last year would be an understatement. One thing we can all lean on was his play down the stretch. Siakam took the reins and played his best basketball all season at a time where the Raptors’ playoff hopes were in flux. He took a lot of the criticism he received last year on the chin and will look to hit the ground running upon his return.

I think it goes without saying that the Raptors will be looking for a more consistent effort out their max player this year, especially now that Kyle Lowry isn't around to tow the line.

Speaking of Lowry, with such a key piece to the franchise gone. It inevitably leaves room for some of the Toronto's youngin's to step up. Barnes will for sure have an impact out of the gate with his explosiveness and ability to defend multiple positions. His enthusiasm toward this city is reminiscent of Lowry, so there is a lot of high hope for the 4th overall pick.

Another interesting youngster to look out for is Khem Birch. I don't think he'll have the same impact that a Barnes will, however he played valuable minutes last year and showed a lot of hunger to be an NBA player. Those are exactly the guys you want on you bench.

Certainly the biggest plus for the 21/22 Raps is their return home to Scotiabank Arena. You could feel that of the struggles from last year's campaign came from a lack of energy from fans. Sure, towards the end of the season fans were allowed to attend games, however nothing says home sweet home like playing in front of 20,000 Canadians. It will most certainly have a positive impact on the team.

Led by VanVleet and Siakam, the Raptors have a roster that should be in the playoff conversation. They're a little younger, but have experience making the playoffs. They were basically in playoff contention until the last week of the season., so surely 37 to 42 wins aren’t out of the question if they remain a healthy squad. That should be good enough for an 8th spot of the first seed in the play-in tournament, but they will most likely be a borderline playoff team.

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