Just when it seemed like the Toronto Raptors were ready to pack things up this season and head for the lottery, Gary Trent Jr., OG Anunoby, and a cast of bench players pulled off an upset of the Cleveland Cavaliers to keep Toronto's faint playoff hopes alive.
Those hopes are, however, hanging ever perilously by a thread, teetering on the edge of irrelevance. If Toronto is going to somehow climb back into the playoff picture, it's going to mean winning like Sunday night's against the New York Knicks.
So far this season back-to-backs haven't been particularly kind of the Raptors. They're 1-10 in the second half of back-to-backs and have been outscored on average by 10 points in those games. This time, however, the Raptors should have some fresh legs. Pascal Siakam is expected to be back in the lineup after a one-game absence due to rest, Khem Birch will make his Raptors debut after signing with the team on Saturday, and Kyle Lowry is "likely" to be back from a right foot infection, according to Raptors coach Nick Nurse.
As things sit at midday, Vegas doesn't like Toronto's chances against the 26-27 New York Knicks. Sportsbooks have the Raptors are three-point underdogs against the Knicks, according to Covers, even though New York has dropped five of their last seven games and hasn't looked as talented as they had in the first half of the year.
New York will once again be without Mitchell Robinson who remains sidelined after fracturing his right hand in February.
The Raptors have yet to release their injury report.