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NBA Preview: Raptors Gunning For Their Eighth Straight, Celtics to Honor Kobe Bryant

The NBA has seen some otherworldly performances by its stars days after Kobe Bryant’s tragic death, and we can expect these teams to continue that trend as we inch closer to the upcoming All-Star Weekend.

Two of the East’s best teams in the Raptors and Sixers will embark on a road trip as they face their inter-conference rivals while the Clippers and the Nuggets aim to improve their overall record at home.

SBOTOP give you a run through of tomorrow’s games.

 

Toronto Raptors @ Cleveland Cavaliers

The Raptors are enjoying an eight-game winning streak and they plan on extending it as they visit the Cavaliers tomorrow.

Toronto are coming off a blowout victory against Atlanta, to which we witnessed Kyle Lowry becoming the franchise assists leader surpassing Jose Calderon at 3,772 dimes. Serge Ibaka and Pascal Siakam contributed 24 points apiece.

“To pass a guy like Jose means a tremendous amount. It means a lot for me to pass him, but to be here and do it this long and for this franchise means the world,” said Lowry postgame.

They will face a struggling Cavaliers team who has lost eight of their last nine. It’s also worth noting that the Raptors won their last two games against them earlier this season.

 

Charlotte Hornets @ Washington Wizards

Charlotte will look to build a new winning streak as they face Washington at the Capital One Arena.

The Hornets recently snapped their eight-game skid by upending the Knicks, courtesy of Terry Rozier’s 30-point performance.

The James Borrego-coached squad is in prime position to tally another high-scoring outing since the Wizards have allowed more than 150 points in each of their last two games. They are coming off of a 151-131 loss against the league-leading Milwaukee Bucks.

However, these two teams have split their season series so far. Washington won in their November meeting then Charlotte got their payback at home last December 10.

 

Philadelphia Sixers @ Atlanta Hawks

Philly are riding high with confidence especially with Joel Embiid returning to his peak form. The hulking big man will look to sustain it as they embark on a four-game road trip starting in Atlanta tomorrow.

In his first game back, Embiid wore #24 and scored the same number of points in their win over the Warriors. He was also the difference maker when his team won against the Hawks during the first week of the season.

Like Embiid, Trae Young also commemorated Kobe Bryant by switching to #8 in a 45-point effort to get past the Wizards last weekend.

The Hawks are fresh from a loss against the Raptors last Tuesday and they are currently 7-16 at home.

 

Golden State Warriors @ Boston Celtics

Boston are set to hold a tribute for Lakers legend Kobe Bryant as they host Golden State tomorrow.

The Celtics formed a fierce rivalry with Bryant’s Lakers, especially back in the late 2000’s where they clashed in three finals appearances.

They have dealt with injuries for the most part this season. But their NBA 2020 of winning this game are high since they’ll face a youth-laden Warriors squad who are yet to find their footing.

Gordon Hayward and Kemba Walker found their rhythm in their recent win against the Heat, and it also helps that Jayson Tatum is set to be back soon.

 

Utah Jazz @ Denver Nuggets

Utah and Denver will lock horns for the first time this season as both clubs will vie for a better record in the Western Conference. Both of them are 32-15 as of this writing.

The home team is coming off a loss against the Grizzlies last Tuesday as the team looked sluggish while dealing with injuries to their key players.

Jamal Murray, Paul Millsap, and Mason Plumlee are expected to sit out tomorrow, which would pose a bigger challenge for the Mike Malone-coached squad.

For the Jazz, they would be keen on halting their two-game losing skid. They lost against the Rockets and the Spurs, with no thanks from Eric Gordon and DeMar DeRozan’s separate scoring outbursts that produced a lot of NBA 2020 highlights.

 

Sacramento Kings @ Los Angeles Clippers

Kawhi Leonard is up to pull another dominating form in upcoming NBA battle against LA Clippers and Sacramento Kings
LA Clippers Kawhi Leonard shoots the ball during their NBA clash against Miami Heat

The Clippers return from a four-day break to face the Kings at the Staples Center.

The NBA postponed the Clippers’ match against the Lakers last Tuesday in lieu of the death of Kobe Bryant. The makeup date has yet to be confirmed.

Los Angeles managed to score a double-digit victory against Orlando and Miami as they’ve won six of their last seven.

Kawhi Leonard has been in peak form as he posted norms of 35.0 points, 7.9 rebounds, and 5.4 assists in that span.

His frontcourt partner Paul George, who suffered a strained hamstring, is listed as probable for tomorrow’s game.

They will face a Kings squad who recently lost to the Thunder after notching back-to-back wins versus the Bulls and the Timberwolves.

 

 

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