Toronto Raptors: 3 takeaways from Game 1 of 2019 NBA Finals

Photo by Joe Murphy/NBAE via Getty Images
Photo by Joe Murphy/NBAE via Getty Images /
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Photo by Joe Murphy/NBAE via Getty Images
Photo by Joe Murphy/NBAE via Getty Images /

The Toronto Raptors won at home in Game 1 of the 2019 NBA Finals against the defending NBA champion Golden State Warriors, 118-109.

The Toronto Raptors struck first in the 2019 NBA Finals against the Golden State Warriors in front of their sold-out home crowd. They were in control for most of Game 1, setting the tone and making shots from deep early en route to a 118-109 victory.

Leading the way for the Raptors was Pascal Siakam with a postseason-best performance of 32 points, eight rebounds, five assists and two big blocks on a highly efficient 14-of-17 shooting night. The team’s superstar, Kawhi Leonard, was held in check for most of night, but still found ways to impact the win. He contributed 23 points, eight rebounds, five assists and three makes from deep despite going on 5-for-14 overall. Despite fouling out in the fourth, Marc Gasol was great, finishing with 20 points and seven rebounds on 6-of-10 shooting.

The reigning champions’ All-Stars performed well enough Thursday night. Stephen Curry led his team with 34 points, five rebounds and five assists on 8-of-18 shooting. Draymond Green played a team-high 40 minutes, contributing a triple-double of 10 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists on 2-of-9 shooting. Klay Thompson had 21 points and three hits from deep on 8-of-17 shooting from the field.

The Warriors took the lead after opening tip, but it wouldn’t last long. The Raptors hit three straight from deep for the team’s first few baskets, generating the lead. The home team won the quarter on the strong play of Danny Green and Gasol. In the second quarter, the Warriors went deep into their rotation, playing as many as six players off the bench in various lineups. The Raptors got big plays from Siakam, Gasol and Green, closing out the half strong on an 19-8 run to take a 59-49 halftime lead.

Toronto led by as many as 12 in the third quarter thanks to the continuous strong play from Siakam. The Warriors were able to generate slow momentum, but never gained control of the pace. Curry’s aggressiveness was rewarded at the charity stripe as he tried to generate some offense for his team. Golden State closed the gap to seven heading into the final frame.

In the fourth quarter with Leonard off the court, the Thompson and bench lineup gained some momentum, narrowing the gap to 3. Thanks to the leadership and playmaking of Kyle Lowry, and Siakam’s unbelievable play on both ends, the Warriors never got any closer the rest of the way.

The Raptors were in full control for the majority of the game and with some help from a friendly rim, they were up double-digits in the final moments. Here are the three biggest takeaways from Toronto’s Game 1 win of the Finals.