TORONTO, Canada—Raptors Uprising GC, NBA 2K League affiliate of the Toronto Raptors, have their sights set on some big games this weekend, as they’ll take on Celtics Crossover Gaming and Gen.G Tigers of Shanghai in Week 3 NBA 2K League action.
Raptors Uprising (0-6) have been faced with some hardship early on this year, as the team from the North is still searching for their first win of this young season. But as fourth-year pro Type points out, while it’s certainly not the start that the team wanted, there is some silver lining in having to face trials and tribulations this early into the season.
“I think it’s always good when you face adversity in this league,” said Type, who was acquired in a trade from Hornets Venom GT this offseason. “It kind of shows who you really are and if you can bounce back or if you’re just going to lay down, and I’m not the type to just lay down and watch what we did (last week). … Facing adversity like this is something that this team hasn’t done in a while. I think you see in Season 1 they went 1-5 and made a run to come all the way back. We just have to get our minds right, get back to what we used to do, and I think you’ll see a new team next week.”
22 GAMES FOR THE REST OF OUR LIVES!!! (4 this week) pic.twitter.com/0OTjqi4AWT
— Raptors Uprising GC (@RaptorsGC) June 7, 2021
Up first, under the Friday night lights, Raptors Uprising will take on Celtics Crossover (1-3) in a pair of games, beginning at 9 pm ET.
After picking up just four wins in Season 3, Boston decided to turn the page and rebuild, sending franchise point guard oFab to Cavs Legion GC for a pair of first-round picks that were used to select rookie lock Tayzo (5th overall) and centre WorthingColt (17th overall). WorthingColt is a player that Timelycook will know quite well, having spent Season 1 alongside the Raptors Uprising star with Kings Guard Gaming. Rounding out the rest of Boston’s starting five are Bulley and FT, the only retained players from Season 3, and highly-touted rookie WalkingBucket.
Like Toronto, Celtics Crossover have struggled out of the gate, dropping both games to Knicks Gaming in Week 2, but were able to steal a game away from the reigning NBA 2K League champions Wizards District Gaming in Week 1. As Type points out, they’re a team that you simply cannot sleep on.
“The Celtics are pretty guard heavy,” said Type. “They’ve got two good guards in FT and Bucket, and I think they’ve got a great lock in Tayzo, so they’re going to have good defence and they’re going to be able to produce points just like the team we just played.”
And then the following night, Raptors Uprising will take on another team that has underperformed early on this year: Gen.G Tigers (0-2).
“Gen.G has two star players in BSmoove and JMoney,” said Type. “I think you cancel out BSmoove and you kind of slow JMoney down because he likes to score a lot, and we’re going to be fine.”
On paper, Gen.G is a team that many had hyped to be one of the top teams in the NBA 2K League this season, but an 0-2 start in the regular season and an underwhelming performance at THE TIPOFF Tournament has many second guessing their predictions. Like Raptors Uprising, they’re hoping to get their season back on track in a pivotal Saturday night showdown, with tipoff of Game 1 set for 7 pm EST.
Sitting at 0-6 isn’t the start Raptors Uprising were hoping for, but with 22 games left to play, there’s still plenty of time for them to right this ship.
“We play two great teams, we’ve got to prepare better, we’ve got to do the little things, and like I told you, we’ve got to get into detail this week and try to really figure out and dive into what we really need to do,” said Type. “I think it’s going to be a big, big week for us—probably the biggest week since we’ve been here.”
Key Matchup to Watch: Kenny Got Work vs. Tayzo—Raptors Uprising have struggled out of the gate this season, and while no player has played particularly well, it’s probably not a coincidence that Kenny Got Work is still trying to find his groove in this year’s version of the game. In five regular season games so far this season, he’s averaging 18.0 points, 8.8 assists, and 1.4 steals, which is a decent drop-off from the numbers he put up in his MVP season a year ago. He’ll once again try to be contained by fifth-overall pick Tayzo, but if Kenny can break out this week, there’s a good chance so will Raptors Uprising.
Stat to Watch: +58—Raptors Uprising will take some solace in the fact that when they played Celtics Crossover Gaming last season, Toronto torched them by 58 points, including setting a then-NBA 2K League record for most points in a game (108). We’re expecting a much closer game this time around, especially with the new league build and a revamped Boston lineup, but if the team from the North are looking for some added confidence heading into this matchup, look no further than the last time these two teams played.
How to Watch: Raptors Uprising and Celtics Crossover Gaming will tipoff at 9 pm EST before once again squaring off at 10 pm EST Friday night. Toronto will then take on Gen.G Tigers on Saturday night with tipoff set for 7 pm and 8 pm EST. As always, fans can tune in on the NBA 2K League’s Twitch or YouTube channels.