Sunday’s contest against the Utah Jazz was supposed to be an intense match-up. The Jazz came to visit the Toronto Raptors at Scotiabank Arena with a competitive 12-7 record and one of the best defences in the NBA, highlighted by reigning defensive player of the year Rudy Gobert. The Raptors responded to that challenge by absolutely demolishing them 130-110. The blowout extends the Raptors streak to 7 games and has them at 15-4 on the season. This solidifies their position at second place in the Eastern Conference. The Miami Heat (14-5), Boston Celtics (14-5) and Philadelphia 76ers (14-6) are all right on their tail.

Toronto’s 9-0 start at home is a franchise best. Their win over the Jazz leaves them as one of four remaining teams who are perfect at home.  Of those four remaining teams the Raptors rank highest in points (120.6 per game) and assists (28.3 per game).

Raptors Dominate First Half

Through 2 quarters of play the Raptors lead comfortably 77-37 and had a 40 point lead going into halftime. This marked the biggest halftime lead in the NBA this season and the biggest halftime lead in Raptors history.

Fred VanVleet after Serge Ibaka miscues a pass to the bench

The Raptors’ rout of the Jazz was in large part to their efficency from behind the arc. The Raptors hit a fantastic 68% (13/19) of their three point shots in the first half. Fred VanVleet was impressive in the contest, producing 21 points and 11 assists with 0 turnovers. Every Raptor thrived offensively last night and they had a  season-high 8 double-digit scorers. The ball was moving smoothly across the floor, showcased by the team’s 36 assists in the game.

Pascal Siakam shined the brightest for the Raptors however, shooting an efficient 63.6% for 35 points.  His 19 first quarter points almost outscored the Jazz’s 20. He was effective from a multitude of areas. The Jazz had no answers for him in the post as Marc Gasol‘s ability to stretch the floor removed Rudy Gobert from the paint. Siakam was also shooting the long ball effectively as he drilled 5 threes.

The Return Of Ibaka

Serge Ibaka (left) high-fiving (Pascal Siakam) in his return from injury

Serge Ibaka returned to the floor after missing the last 10 games with a sprained right ankle. “Power Serge” didn’t seem to miss a beat pouring in 14 points and fighting for 4 rebounds. Ibaka’s addition to Toronto’s amazing second unit will only help propel them forward. Serge’s strength, rebounding and post abilities create a devastating force in the paint. Adding him to a thriving bench unit is going to see the Raptors improve to even greater heights.

The Raptors put both their win streaks on the line against a surging Jimmy Butler and the Miami Heat. Tune in on Tuesday at 7:30 PM/EST to watch what is sure to be a great test for this gritty Toronto team.