Knocked around in Brooklyn when the game took on a playoff-like feel, the Raptors responded by flexing their muscles against visiting Memphis.
Now comes the hard part of maintaining that style of play, setting hard screens, boxing out, beating your man to a spot, fighting through screens and attacking the basket.
For the Raptors, 18 games remain before the NBA’s second season begins, a place that isn’t assured, but one that’ll soon be made official.
For now, all the Raptors need to do, and must do, is take care of their own house and allow the outside world to figure magical numbers and potential post-season scenarios.
In the NBA, it has often been said that good teams get favourable calls, elite players allowed to take an extra step and basically push the envelope with officials.
The fact remains that good teams establish a style of play and the league is a star-driven league where the truly elite do get the benefit of the doubt.