The Rundown: Splash Brothers dominate Raptors

Published January 28, 2023, 2:00 PMPolo Bustamante

Steph Curry and Klay Thompson combined for 64 points as the Warriors defeated the Raptors.



Bucks 141, Pacers 131

Timberwolves 111, Grizzlies 100

Heat 110, Magic 105

Thunder 112, Cavaliers 100

Warriors 129, Raptors 117

What went down

The NBA Finals between the Toronto Raptors and Golden State Warriors was a memorable one. It’s always going to go down as the year that the Raptors took the trophy from the juggernaut Warriors and brought it home to Canada. That’s why the matchup between these two teams since then will always be special.

Nearly four years later, things are a little different for both teams. 

The Warriors are suffering from a major championship hangover. They were sporting a 24-24 record coming into this matchup and are in the middle of the play-in bracket in the West. The Raptors, on the other hand, have struggled even worse this season. They carried a 22-27 slate into San Francisco, looking to climb into play-in contention. Even if both teams are far from their championship form, this matchup was a crucial one because it carried real playoff implications for both teams.

For most of the game, these two teams were locked in a back-and-forth affair. They traded blows and leads for nearly three quarters of play. The Raptors got contributions from across the board, true to their identity. The Warriors countered with the bright play from their superstars.

That was until the brightest stars in the game decided to go supernova.

The Splash Brothers had enough of the pesky Raptors sticking around and decided to push their team ahead decidedly. Curry scored nine points in the fourth quarter, including this booming triple that put the Warriors up by nine heading into the final minutes.

Thompson also had nine points in the final period, all coming from beyond the arc. His 3-pointers kept the Raptors at bay whenever they threatened.

Curry finished the game with 35 points, seven rebounds, and 11 assists while Thompson had 29 built on six 3-pointers. This win put the Warriors within half a game from the sixth seed and right into the playoff picture. The Raptors now fall a whole game away from the 10th seed in the East.

Big-time baller

Coming into this game, there was legitimate concern regarding Giannis Antetokounmpo who was suffering from knee soreness. He missed five games midway through January because his knees were bothering him.

Antetokounmpo, known for his durability, has felt the pounding of long seasons and his high intensity playing style this season.

Thankfully, the Greek Freak suited up for today’s game despite earlier being included in the team’s injury report.

The knee looks fine, basing it off that highlight.

What he said

Remember when Kyrie Irving did this?

It was one of the most surprising highlights by the Brooklyn Nets playmaker. He’s known more for his crafty finishes, rather than his above-the-rim activity. The team’s reaction to the slam says it all.

Kevin Durant, Irving’s teammate, joined NBA Hooper Vision and talked about the putback slam by Irving. 

“That dunk was exciting, but we get so many other plays from Ky where we would just be lost for words…”

If that dunk was just passable by KD’s standards, what other highlights does Irving have?

Did you see that?

Ah, the iconic pass-to-the-backboard shot done by athletic freaks like Kobe Bryant, Tracy McGrady, Vince Carter and… Chris Duarte?!?