After a disappointing loss to the understaffed Miami Heat, the Phoenix Suns will hit the road starting with a game against the Toronto Raptors on Tuesday. Phoenix is as healthy as ever and will be looking to bounce back in a big way against a burgeoning team.
The Phoenix Suns were unusually sloppy in their offense and lackluster in defense in their loss to the Heat. They allowed their opponents to start early and never really recovered from the three-point shootout, ultimately losing 123-100.
Phoenix will surely try to have a better sense of urgency against a team that is starting to gain momentum.
The Toronto Raptors are on a season-high six-game winning streak. Pascal Siakam, who missed the team’s first 10 games, is starting to look like an All-Star himself. Fred VanVleet was also in tears, making the athletic Raptors legitimate contenders for the playoffs.
Head coach Nick Nurse and the coaching staff will expect a determined Suns team looking to put the frustrating loss behind them. If the visiting team stays true to form, the Raptors will be ready for a very competitive night.
Fixation: Phoenix Suns vs. Toronto Raptors | 2021-22 NBA season
Date and hour : Tuesday January 11; 7:30 p.m. ET (Wednesday, Jan. 12; 6:00 a.m. HIST)
Place: Scotiabank Arena, Toronto, ON
Phoenix Suns Preview
The Phoenix Suns probably played their worst game of the season against the resilient Miami Heat. Despite Tyler Herro and Duncan Robinson’s huge scoring nights, they shouldn’t have been outdone given the Heat’s thin squad.
Unsurprisingly, Chris Paul also had a mediocre game by his standards. He had just nine points, two rebounds and seven assists with four turnovers. The Phoenix Suns were almost bursting with energy when actors like Bismack Biyombo and Jalen Smith were on the pitch in the last few games.
They should be back to themselves once they have regained their energy and effort.
Key player – Chris Paul
The way CP3 plays largely dictates what the Phoenix Suns will do. With Paul seemingly out of rhythm, the team struggled tremendously on both ends of the pitch. Point God leads the league in assists but lacked their usual metronome play.
Kyle Lowry is to be thanked for completely dominating the playmaker’s game. Knowing how fiercely competitive Chris Paul is, he will surely be looking to redeem himself against the Toronto Raptors.
Predicted lineup of the Phoenix Suns
g -Chris Paul | g – Devin Booker | F – Mikal Bridges | F – Jae Crowder | VS – Deandre Ayton
Toronto Raptors preview
The Toronto Raptors finally have most of their team in good shape and in good health. Nick Nurse had previously built a championship team with a defensive identity rooted in length, athleticism and Kawhi Leonard. He’s been trying to replicate that same formula with exceptional results lately.
Scottie Barnes, Pascal Siakam, OG Anunoby, Khem Birch and Chris Boucher and pretty much the whole lineup is a sea of arms and length. They are switchable in attack and defense and are tough cover for any team.
Fred VanVleet is probably the only exception to the Raptors’ new identity, but he plays so much bigger than his frame. He’s also an energizing bunny who keeps moving, shouting directions and orchestrating plays. The pint-sized point guard might even be part of the All-Star squad and not raise his eyebrows.
Key player – Fred VanVleet
Amidst all the length and limitless athleticism is a bulky, short point guard who is the leader of the Raptors. In his last 8 games, Fred VanVleet has averaged an impressive 30.6 points, 7.6 assists and 4.9 rebounds. He was scorching over long distances, converting 45.6% of his attempts at three points.
The NBA named the Toronto Raptors point guard as the Eastern Conference Player of the Week, which is very deserving of it. Toronto’s rise in form and confidence is certainly not without a coincidence when VanVleet’s play is taken into consideration.
Toronto Raptors’ planned lineup
g – Fred VanVleet | g – OG Anunoby | F -Pascal Siakam | F – Scottie Barnes | VS – Khem birch
Suns vs Raptors match prediction
The Phoenix Suns have the third-best net score in the NBA, behind the Golden State Warriors and the Phoenix Suns. Either the Heat got them out of the game altogether or they just made the mistake of looking past their opponents’ shorthanded formation. Whatever the reason, they will surely come out with aggression and energy.
If the Suns stay in character, they could interrupt the Raptors’ winning run in a ball game on the edge of your seat.
Where to watch the Suns vs Raptors game
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The NBA League Pass will broadcast the game live. Local coverage of the game is available through Bally Sports Arizona and TSN.