Imman Adan and Asad Alvi predict how the Raptors will cope without Pascal Siakam for at least the next two weeks and what their record will be at the end of November.
IMMAN ADAN: So let me pull it up for you, OK? So I'm just-- I'm going to give it a two-week mark. I think he'll be re-evaluated in two weeks. But I'm going to give it a two-week mark.
So today is a six. So we're looking at the Bulls, the Rockets, the Thunder, the Pacers, the Pistons, the Heat, and the Hawks, OK? So 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 teams that I just named.
ASAD ALVI: Yeah, so the Rockets--
IMMAN ADAN: What do you think the Raptors record will be?
ASAD ALVI: The Rockets will be an easy win. Like, losing to the Rockets would be pretty sad. That would mean that, like, the Raptors did not show up to play defense, did not care enough to play offense. Like, again, this is a Rockets team that, like, the Raptors have played them a few times--
IMMAN ADAN: Did it not happen in the preseason? I know it's preseason basketball-- [LAUGHS]
ASAD ALVI: The Raptors have played them a few times. Like, last season when the Raptors played them, they had a similar-looking roster. It's a lot of young guys.
They don't really know how to take care of the ball. They don't have a true point guard. So the Raptors have had a lot of success full court pressing this team into timeouts. So I would be interested to see that.
I'm sure-- I think they should be able to pull off a game against the Rockets pretty easily, as you have Fred, OG, Scottie, and Gary. That's more than enough--
IMMAN ADAN: What about the mighty Thunder?
ASAD ALVI: The Thunder could be tricky. The one thing with the Thunder is, they do have a lot of length. They have a lot of very mobile size, and playing good basketball. And Shai Gilgeous-Alexander is a problem.
Who the Raptors guard him with-- Shai draws a lot of fouls. He's very shifty. So he's not just, like, your normal athletic guard that you're trying to guard. He's very difficult to kind of stay in front of.
So I could see the Raptors having some problem there. That said, again, the Thunder, they're a young team. Their shooting is not that great. They have a couple of good shooters. But team-wide, they're probably not the best shooting team.
IMMAN ADAN: So far, 3 and 0, you're saying?
ASAD ALVI: I would assume that's a win. It would be a tough win, but you should be able to pull that game out.
IMMAN ADAN: Second night of a back-to-back in Indiana. Traveling from OKC to Indiana, I feel like that's not that-- I don't know American geography. I don't think it's that far.
ASAD ALVI: Indiana's been playing some really good basketball. They have a lot of young guys. They spread the minutes around.
So like, Ben Mathurin coming off their bench-- Ben Mathurin, Canadian kid, Montreal's finest-- he's been amazing to start the season.
IMMAN ADAN: Rookie of the Year?
ASAD ALVI: He's right up there with Paolo Banchero.
IMMAN ADAN: Number two?
ASAD ALVI: He is right there. I would put him at number one just because I feel like-- I'm just a bit of a homer. But you know, Ben Mathurin coming off the bench, giving you 20 points a night, a lot of size, a lot of mobility. Indiana's an interesting team.
Again, they don't really have a speedy guard. So I think the Raptors should be able to guard them pretty well. Tyrese Haliburton, I don't know how successful he's really been against the Raptors. He's a little bit slow-footed. He kind of really has to hurt you with his jump shot.
But again, on a back-to-back, it's a little tough. I'd like to see-- I don't know if Indiana is coming off a back-to-back. I think that would probably be a tougher game.
That said, OG Anunoby versus Indiana has been, like, money for the last--
IMMAN ADAN: That is true.
ASAD ALVI: --however many years. So whether-- win or loss, I expect OG to drop 30 in that game, or somewhere close.
IMMAN ADAN: That's a win. You're not losing when OG--
ASAD ALVI: Really? A win?
IMMAN ADAN: --drops 30. What's happening? That's a win. All right, Detroit-- so was that the first loss that we're calling?
ASAD ALVI: Oh, we don't--
IMMAN ADAN: [INAUDIBLE] winning.
ASAD ALVI: --we don't need Pascal Siakam to lose against Detroit. Are you kidding me?
IMMAN ADAN: [LAUGHS] I said I wasn't going to make you go through the games one by one, but here we are. So the next two that I have here is Miami and Atlanta after that loss to Detroit.
ASAD ALVI: Miami's probably tough. I don't think we can beat Miami without Pascal Siakam. Miami's a really good--
IMMAN ADAN: It's at home, though.
ASAD ALVI: Doesn't matter. I think Miami's just too good of a defensive team. Again, like, dealing with Bam Adebayo to create offense-- like, the Raptors struggled in those first two matchups against Miami. Those were close games.
And Pascal Siakam was massive in those games. He drew so much attention. So I don't know if we can really win without Pascal against a Miami team.
But it would be an interesting game. If Miami has a cold shooting night, then you could definitely get them, so--
IMMAN ADAN: And then the last one is the Atlanta Hawks.
ASAD ALVI: I think you get the Hawks. The Hawks still have the same issue, right? Like, Scottie Barnes and OG Anunoby should be able to create the same matchup issues.
Defensively, the Raptors have-- again, the Hawks-- I feel like the Hawks don't care enough about every possession to kind of deal with the Raptors. So--
IMMAN ADAN: Regular season is boring.
ASAD ALVI: --I'm going to say it's a win. I'm going to say it's a win against the Hawks. That one's a close one. But I think the Raptors are going to win. They should be able to win that game.