Toronto Raptors continued their recent woes, falling 115-103 to Phoenix Suns to extend their season-worst losing streak to three games in Sunday evening NBA action.
This is the first time Toronto has suffered three straight regular season losses since Nov. 2015 when they fell to Sacramento, Golden State and Utah during a road trip.
“Of course, when you lose three in a row you should be upset. I don’t want anybody in the locker room not to be upset and frustrated because we’ve set a standard for ourselves to be better than that,” Raptors head coach Dwane Casey told reporters after the loss.
This losing streak started on the road with losses to Philadelphia on Jan. 18 and Charlotte on Jan. 20. In the loss to Charlotte, Raptors suffered their worst loss of the season, a 113-78 thumping.
Prior to the losses, Raptors’ offence averaged 113.4 points a game and held opponents to 106.4. During the three-game span, the offence has averaged 90.0 points, while allowing opponents to score 107.3 points a game.
Casey believes that the issue is on the defensive end rather than the offensive end.
“It’s not about offence; I’ve said that the entire year. When your shots aren’t falling, you have to make it up on the defensive end and we did not do that tonight,” said Casey. “We let our offensive woes go to the defensive end, not get stops, crucial stops, get the ball under control.”
Toronto’s defence was unable to contain Phoenix throughout the game, allowing the Suns to shoot 40-for-79 (50.6 percent) from the field, including 10-for-18 (55.6 percent) in the fourth quarter.
A big contributor in the fourth quarter was Suns guard Eric Bledsoe, who scored 15 of his career-high 40 points in the fourth quarter. Down eight points in the early part of the fourth frame, Bledsoe and the Suns finished the final 11:15 of the game on a 33-13 run to seal the victory.
Recently named All-Star Starter DeMar DeRozan of Raptors is hopeful that the team will turn it around soon.
“You hate leaving the arena like this. It sucks at night having that on your mind, having consecutive losses, especially three you aren’t used to having,” said DeRozan, who scored a team-high 22 points in the loss. “You have to come out with that feeling, that hunger and that aggressiveness next game.”
The next game for DeRozan and his teammates to snap their losing streak is on Tuesday when they host the 34-9 San Antonio Spurs. Enditem.