Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?


Raptors outlast Celtics in thrilling double-Overtime Game 6

Fred VanVleet sparked a late-game comeback that kept the Raptors alive in their NBA Playoff series against the Boston Celtics.

Fred VanVleet Scores Tough Layup Over Jayson Tatum 2020 NBA Playoffs Game 6
Fred VanVleet Scores Tough Layup Over Jayson Tatum 2020 NBA Playoffs Game 6 - Photo: Toronto Raptors

Fred VanVleet landed awkwardly on Marcus Smart’s foot on a three-point attempt early in the third-quarter, and you were tempted to think: Well, that’s it, then. 

He’s rolled his ankle. 

Game over, series over, title defence over. What a relief.

The Toronto Raptors can go home and regroup and ride out this pandemic like the rest of us.

But Smart was given a flagrant foul on the play, and VanVleet made three free-throws to pull the Toronto Raptors within one point of the Boston Celtics in this must-win Playoff Game 6.

Advertisement. Scroll to continue reading.

Then VanVleet — the man, the myth, the legend — hit a three-pointer on the baseline on the very next play, completing a six-point possession and giving the Raptors a 64-62 lead, their first since the first-quarter. 

On the next play, VanVleet — tough as nails, a man among boys — grabbed the rebound on a missed three-point attempt from Celtics guard Kemba Walker, then hit another three-pointer to put the Raptors up by four.

VanVleet ignites Raptors offence

Fred Vanvleet Scores Tough Layup Over Jayson Tatum 2020 Nba Playoffs Game 6
Fred Vanvleet Scores Tough Layup Over Jayson Tatum 2020 Nba Playoffs Game 6 – Photo: Toronto Raptors

“That was a little spark to get me going after a crappy first half,” said VanVleet post-game 

“That was big for us in the third — have a little burst there to give us a lead and just kind of change the flow of the game.” 

Then the Raptors offence began to click. Several decisive plays led to shots that rattled in after so many misfires earlier in the series. 

What followed was one of the most anxiety-inducing stretches of basketball the Raptors have seen since last season’s NBA championship run. 

Advertisement. Scroll to continue reading.

The Celtics tied it 98-98 with two minutes left in regulation, and both teams had chances to put the game away late, but couldn’t. 

Must Read:
Young Over Old! Swaggy P Goes For Three In San Antonio

Raptors forward Pascal Siakam missed a three-pointer at the buzzer, and the game went to an evenly-played overtime period in which Raptors guard Norman Powell took — and missed — the final shot.

‘Playoff Powell’ finally shows up

Kyle Lowry Norman Powell Pascal Siakam Og Anunoby Serge Ibaka Toronto Raptors 2020 Nba Playoffs Versus Boston Celtics
Kyle Lowry, Norman Powell, Pascal Siakam, OG Anunoby, Serge Ibaka 2020 NBA Playoffs – Photo: Toronto Raptors

But Powell was huge in the second overtime, finally breaking out after a series of lukewarm playoff performances. He finished with 23 points on 6-11 shooting, including several big shots down the stretch.

“We just continued to stay together,” said Powell. “Everybody continued to make big plays and trust one another, and I think that’s that’s real Raptors basketball — trusting one another, continue to play no matter what we’re faced with, and we were able to pull it off tonight.” 

Raptors force Game 7

Kyle Lowry Stands At Center Court Looking Down At NBA Logo Toronto Raptors Outlast Celtics In Thrilling Double Overtime Game 6
Kyle Lowry Stands At Center Court Looking Down At NBA Logo Toronto Raptors Outlast Celtics In Thrilling Double Overtime Game 6 – Photo: Toronto Raptors

Raptors point guard Kyle Lowry was once again the lynchpin, scoring 33 points to go with six assists and eight rebounds. OG Anunoby had 13 points and thirteen rebounds, and was off the charts with poise, hustle and other intangibles.

Centre Marc Gasol, who has struggled mightily on offence this series, arrived with a freshly-shaved head and showed flashes of life, finishing with eight points, two rebounds and a blocked shot.

“I think it was the haircut,” VanVleet joked. “I think he got a little more aerodynamic.” 

Advertisement. Scroll to continue reading.

In this game there were glimpses of the exciting, dynamic, confident Raptors’ team that followed Kawhi Leonard to a title last season. They appeared, then disappeared, and by the end it was tempting to think they are finally starting to figure it out. 

“At this time of the year, the numbers don’t matter. I don’t give a damn what percentage you shoot. You just got to get a win,” said VanVleet. 

Must Read:
Opportunity knocks for Trae Bell-Haynes as Canadian men's basketball team aims to qualify for Olympics

“It took everybody tonight, and everybody had their moment in the game. Big spurts, big momentum swings. And that’s all you ask for, is guys to continue to stay confident so when they get their chance, they can keep firing.”


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


For security, use of Google's reCAPTCHA service is required which is subject to the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.

I agree to these terms.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.




Training camp is open and the media have had their day. The new NBA season is just around the corner. Time to see what's...


The late, great Bill Russell didn't just win more times than anybody else ever in team sports. He also won for the rights of...


A total of 18 Canadian basketball players are currently on 2022 NBA Summer League rosters. Keep-up with the daily action with BasketballBuzz's NBA summer...


Fresh faces. New beginnings. The 2022 NBA Summer League is once again expected to be loaded with Canadian NBA talent. Lottery picks, undrafted talent,...


In one of the greatest NBA Finals of our generation, the Golden State Warriors became one of the greatest dynasties of all-time with the...


Canadian hoops poster boy Andrew Wiggins put up a legendary line for the Warriors, to go along with another classic poster, as we may...


We still believe in Boston, but you can't write off the will of the 'We Believe' Warriors' way. Especially when Steph Curry has the...


Tom Cruise's 'Top Gun' sequel may be skyrocketing up the box office movie charts right now. But the real blockbuster belongs in the NBA...

BasketballBuzz - Canada's Basketball Magazine