Raptors Uprising GC failed to get off to a winning start to 3v3 Seed Weeks as they fell 3-1 (12-21, 23-21, 8-21, 16-22) to Nets GC in their tournament opener.
With four series still left to play, Toronto will look to learn from their mistakes and bounce back as soon as possible.
In their last 3v3 tournament, Raptors Uprising finished off with two straight wins despite narrowly missing out on a place in Indy. The series loss to Brooklyn showcased some positives, but more so a need to get back to the drawing board and ensure Toronto can stay dominant for longer periods of time.
Head coach Kevin Franklin elected to go with a starting three of FantaSZN, Kenny Got Work and Big Saint, a lineup which Toronto has often used in 3v3 so far this season.
Yet, Game 1 began in a similar fashion to how Raptors Uprising have been starting games recently, with the opposing team taking control and Toronto having to play catch-up. Nets GC’s Jyden stole the show as he scored 18 of Brooklyn’s 21 points to seal a 21-12 win for him and his squad.
A fightback was needed in Game 2, and Toronto duly delivered. Fanta’s 12 points helped steer Raptors Uprising to a 23-21 victory to level the series, with momentum shifting in Toronto’s favour.
In spite of a hard-fought win in the previous game, Brooklyn was back in the driving seat during Game 3, taking care of business with a 21-8 win to move one away from taking the series.
The Nets did just that in Game 4, recording a 22-16 victory to wrap up a 3-1 series win.
On the night, Fanta led the team in points and assists across the four games with 34 and 10, while Kenny put up six rebounds to lead that category.
Kenny spoke post-series on how he felt the team performed.
“We tried to emphasize the defensive side of the ball as much as possible. The Nets did a great job of keeping the point guard needing to play defence, and that hurt us and our offence as well.”
As we know in the NBA 2K League, momentum can go a long way, especially with regards to getting on a good run of form, and Kenny acknowledged that he and the squad failed to establish that from the start.
“I feel like Game 1 was a winnable game. When those 50-50 balls don’t go your way, it definitely plays a factor and can determine the outcome of a game.”
On the lineup, Kenny felt that a starting three that could beat the Nets was put out there, but that change is sometimes necessary down the line.
“I think we felt like that lineup gave us our best shot tonight, but this league is all about adapting and making adjustments.”
Ahead of more 3v3 action, Kenny was reflective on how his team has performed overall this season.
“It’s been a disappointing year for us because we felt we’d be a top 3v3 team,” expressed Kenny.
“I’m just looking forward to getting back on that stage.”
“If we want to bounce back, we’ve gotta get back on our Ps and Qs.”
Raptors Uprising GC takes on the Gen.G Tigers in their second series of 3v3 Seed Weeks on Wednesday, July 20th, with Game 1 scheduled for 10:00 pm EST.
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