Toronto Raptors Leading Scorer Pascal Siakim Out Indefinitely
Toronto Raptors forward Pascal Siakim will miss an unknown amount of time while recovering from an abductor strain injury.
Siakim went down with an apparent groin injury on Friday evening in a game against the Dallas Mavericks. He underwent further testing over the weekend, which revealed a right abductor strain.
The Raptors will re-evaluate Siakim in two weeks. Abductor strains can take several weeks or multiple months to heal, depending on the severity of the strain.
The Raptors are 6-4 this season, and currently in fifth place in the Eastern Conference standings. The Boston Celtics lead the Atlantic Division by a half-game over the Raptors. The Celtics are the consensus favorites to win the division, but the Raptors are +550 odds to secure the Atlantic crown. The Raptors are +3500 odds to win the 2023 NBA Championship.
The Raptors are a profitable betting team in the NBA this season with an 8-2 ATS record.
Siakim led the Raptors with a career-high 24.8 points, 9.3 rebounds, and 7.7 assists this season. He posted two triple-doubles and five double-doubles in the first nine games of the season.
Siakim dumped 37 points, 12 rebounds, and 11 assists against the Brooklyn Nets in the second game of the season. Last Wednesday, he posted a 22-point triple-double in a 43-point blowout victory against the San Antonio Spurs.
Siakim suffered a groin injury when he fell driving to the basket against the Mavs in the third quarter on Friday. He scored 18 points in 22 minutes before his exit. Without Siakim and his rim protection, the Mavs edged out the Raptors by one point.
The Raptors are ranked #4 in scoring defense, allowing 106.1 points per game. They have players who can pick up the scoring slack, but the Raptors will miss Siakim’s veteran defensive skills.
In the off-season, Kevin Durant from the Nets was involved in trade rumors with the Raptors. Durant asked the Nets to trade him and the Raptors were one of the few teams that had the right combination of future draft picks and young players to complete a trade. Siakim was mentioned in one of the numerous potential trade packages involving Durant.
Glue Guys: Boucher, Koloko, Achiuwa
Without Siakim for the next few weeks, the Raptors have a couple of big bodies who can come off the bench and play a pivotal role in replacing Siakim on both ends of the court.
Precious Achiuwa averages 9.1 points and 7.4 assists per game with the second unit. Power forward Chris Boucher averages 12 points and five rebounds per game off the bench.
Glue guys,” said starting guard Fred VanVleet. “We’ve talked about that in recent years. But it’s really good for this group to have those guys around the edges. Chris Boucher has turned into one of those guys.”
Christian Koloko, an early second-round pick out of Arizona, averaged 3.8 points and 3.8 rebounds per game during his rookie season. Head coach Nick Nurse started Koloko in five games this season and wants the rookie to play with more aggression.
“I’ve got to go stronger,” Koloko told The Athletic. “The refs are not gonna give me easy calls. I’ve just got to go out there and try to dunk everything.”
On Sunday, in a victory against the Chicago Bulls, Koloko played the best game of his brief career. He scored 11 points, pulled down seven rebounds, and blocked six shots.
Starting forward OG Anunoby hinted that he wanted the Raptors to trade him because of the rapid ascension of forward Scottie Barnes. Barnes, the fourth-overall pick in the 2021 NBA Draft, won the Rookie of the Year award last season. While Barnes became a bigger part of the offense, Anunoby saw his role diminish.
Anunoby has played great so far this season. He averages 16.2 points per game as the Raptors’ third-best scorer. Without Siakim out, Anunoby has a chance to pick up some of the scoring slack.
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