[tps_header](3) Toronto Raptors (48-34) vs. (6) Brooklyn Nets (44-38)[/tps_header]
Season series: 2-2 split
A new-look Nets team laden with playoff and championship experience is facing off against the surprisingly talented and youthful Toronto Raptors. During the regular season, three of the four games were decided by four points or less, perhaps setting us up for a very entertaining series.
Stats to Remember:
Brooklyn: Averaged 14.5 turnovers per game in regular season – 15.5 turnovers per game vs. Raptors
Toronto: Averaged 21.2 assists per game in regular season – 18.8 assists per game vs. Nets
Players to Watch:
Brooklyn: Kevin Garnett – This has much more to do with psychology than numbers. Garnett is only averaging 6.5 points and 6.6 rebounds per contest this season but is still one of the best trash-talkers in the game. If he can get in the heads of the young Raptors players, it may be enough to frustrate Toronto and give Brooklyn an extra edge.
Toronto: Kyle Lowry – Lowry may be one of the most underrated guards in all of basketball. As it stands, he will be the most important piece in the matchup against Brooklyn, getting to the basket and creating easy buckets for his teammates. When Lowry records 10 or more assists, the Raptors are 16-3.
Toronto will come out swinging and may win the first game or two on its home floor but that won’t mean the series is over. Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett have been through this before so don’t expect the Nets to start shaking if they get behind in this series. The guard play of Deron Williams, Joe Johnson, DeMar DeRozen and Kyle Lowry will be must-watch television. It will be interesting to see how the young guns psyche holds up against the experienced veterans.
Brooklyn in seven games