Okay, I need to start by saying that I missed Serge Ibaka BIG TIME! Although it’s extremely entertaining to see him in those uber-chic suits, the suits mean that he’s on the bench and that is always disappointing.
The boys did pretty darn well while Serge Ibaka was recuperating, coming in at 8-2 for their ten games without him. Let’s talk about last week’s game against Philadelphia. From the get-go, we were all thinking about the gorgeous shot by Kawhi Leonard last year on this same court, the game-winning shot that went down in Raptors history. It’s actually #3 on CBS Sports Best NBA Shots of the Decade, and NBA.com included it on their list of Notable Series-Clinching Shots in NBA Playoff History.
Now, I’m not saying they’re Kawhi-calibre, but there were several gorgeous shots made last Monday that made my eyes bulge with glee: Norm’s shot after the pass from Van Vleet and Siakam’s jaw-dropping two-handed dunk were things of absolute beauty (you can watch all these here).
But DAMN! Were we ever glad to see Serge back on the floor last night! He legit received a standing ovation when he finally made his way onto the court with only 90 seconds left in the first quarter. At first, he was a bit rusty and it took a little while for him to return to true form. But when he did… oh, it was magical.
Is it a coincidence that upon Serge’s return, the team led 77-37 through the first two quarters? The biggest halftime lead in Raps’ history? The largest in the league so far this season? Nope, don’t think so. While it may not have been Serge himself who racked up all those points, his presence, the exciting atmosphere surrounding his appearance, most definitely propelled the team towards glory.
My favorite part of last night’s game? Easy. That pass from Serge to my mom’s favorite Fred was beautiful. If only Fred had actually been in the game at the time! Your bad, Fred, your bad!
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