The 1x1 of the Raptors: Kawhi and Marc made the leap in quality

Both have been key to leave behind the lack of competitiveness in a group that has worked like a clock.


Kawhi Leonard (Alero, 27)

Arrived Toronto at the worst moment of his career, after a year without almost playing in San Antonio, and he appreciated the Raptors' bet on him in the best possible way. Your second MPV of the Finals is the icing on a cake that has been cooking all season. Soon it was seen that the best Kawhi was back, but even that version fell short. He has signed the best numbers since he's in the NBA and has served as the leader he always carried inside, more with facts than with words. His numbers in the playoffs place him at the height of of the best performances in history, with names like those of Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant or LeBron James. This summer will be free if, as everything points, does not make effective the contract year that is left, so on July 1 will be free to decide their future. We will have to see if the winning project that has been set up in Toronto is able to convince him to continue in Canada.

Kyle Lowry (Base, 33 years old)

With the summer march of DeMar DeRozan on the way to San Antonio in the handover of Kawhi, Lowry He remained alone as a sign of the franchise. The base, five times all star, embodied the Sambenito that persecuted the franchise: its competitive downturn when the playoffs came. The three consecutive eliminations against the LeBron Cavs, losing ten straight games in the last three years, left a lot of confidence in him. But this year it has been redeemed. I am missing from most throughout the playoffs, he has had a remarkable performance in the final with some brilliant moments, showing a certainty and a knowing to be that he had not always shown.

Marc Gasol (Pívot, 34 years old)

Second player born in Spain NBA champion, second Gasol. After the rings of Pau in 2009 and 2010 his little brother has achieved it in his eleventh season and the first in which he is not in Memphis, his house of a lifetime in the United States. In February he packed his bags to go to Canada and the change could not have gone better. With the Grizzlies he reached a conference finals, had been three times all star, twice had been in the best quintets of the year (in the first in 2015) and won the st champion of the year in 2013. But he had never been close to fighting for a ring. His contribution to the champion has been vital, especially in defense, the pillar of the team to get here. Marc has once again proved to be one of the world's great specialists in this section of the game and has also released Lowry and Kawhi in creation with his good vision and ability to move the ball in attack. He is in the same situation as Leonard, with one year of optional contract that he can refuse to go on the market. His future right now is a mystery.

Paskal Siakam (Ala-pívot, 25 years old)

The great discovery of the season in the Raptors. Last year he already noticed improvement in his game, but in this, his third season in the NBA, has exploded. It is the big favorite to take the prize of Player More Improved and has become the second main offensive weapon of the team. Their power, energy and fighting have left room for an unknown scoring ability that has been basic for the Raptors to get here. The future of the Canadian franchise has much of its hopes put in their hands.

Danny Green (Escort, 31 years old)

He arrived from San Antonio with Kawhi and has been the player who has completed the initial quintet from the beginning. With much more regularity than in recent seasons in the Texan team, Green has been able to execute from the first moment the role for which he required the team: exterior defense and score from the line of three. In these finals he has entered the top-10 historical player with more triple scored in the Finals.

Serge Ibaka (Pívot, 29 years)

El Hispano-Congolese has achieved the ring in his second attempt. He already lost a final in 2012, when he was part of the Thunder's starting lineup. In Toronto he lost minutes with the arrival of Marc, but since then he has been one of the main men in the second unit and has had some excellent performances in these playoffs, including the final. Scariolo, that had been six years without agreeing with him, has spoken wonders of the new Ibaka that has been found in Toronto. A player more made, smarter on the court and more supportive. All that has been reflected throughout the season.

Fred VanVleet (Base, 25 years old)

The great revolutionary of the second unit, often playing minutes as if he were a starter. Your defenseCurry in the final has been important, as well as the points he always brings. He is one of those basic second-row scorers for a team to win the NBA. He connected a tremendous triple streak in the conference finals and before the Warriors he has remained a capital player in several phases of all matches. As Siakam, another man the Raptors can count on long term, as long as they renew him next year when he finishes contract.

OG Anunoby (Escort, 21 years old)

A appendicitis and an emergency operation has prevented us from seeing the new promise of the Canadian team. Anunoby, British born in London, is another basic piece in the future of the franchise. He has only been in the NBA for two seasons, but he has already shown that he has a place in the best league in the world. He was chosen in the 23rd position of the 2017 draft and aims to be a small steal by the Raptors, who have shown a solid rotation even without being able to count on him.

Norman Powell (Escort, 26 years old)

Another player who Raptors chose in a low draft round, in this case later still Anunoby: 46 in 2015. In his four years in Toronto he has settled as a rotation player capable of giving solutions in attack at specific times. In these Finals it has not had a great protagonism, but in the previous rounds of playoffs yes that was important, especially before Milwaukee in the end of the East.



Photos from as.com

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