Fred VanVleet Weighs In On Kyle Lowry vs Serge Ibaka Beef
Fred VanVleet weighed in on the little Kyle Lowry vs Serge Ibaka beef that played out during Game 5 on Monday afternoon.
With just over a minute remaining in the third quarter of his team’s blowout defeat to the Boston Celtics, Lowry committed a foul against Jayson Tatum. Not content with just the foul, Lowry went the extra mile and also earned himself a tech for his troubles.
This irritated Serge Ibaka, who was already frustrated by how badly the Toronto Raptors were losing the game.
“Come on man, we’re losing,” he yelled.
VanVleet noticed what was taking place and walked over to calm Ibaka down.
After the game, VanVleet explained what had transpired during that particular sequence of events.
“Kyle had his moment with the ref,” he said.
“Serge had his moment with Kyle. But we moved on, we moved past it. It happens. We’re brothers. It’s a lot at stake. There’s a lot on the line. Those type of things are going to happen. But it wasn’t as bad as it looked, I can tell you that much. That’s an everyday thing on our team. Guys just being honest. We have a lot of passionate guys. It’s just part of the process.”
In VanVleet’s estimation, playing games with no fans in attendance made something that is relatively common place during outings seem like a bigger deal than it actually was.
“Those frustrations happen all the time,” he admitted.
“You guys don’t see a lot of them. But that was one that was obviously visible and you could probably hear a little bit there if you were in the arena. Just some frustrations with the game.
“Nobody was happy. Obviously with the way we played, everybody was frustrated. But you have your moment and you move on and you keep playing after that.”
The Raptors coach didn’t hold back. https://t.co/wRsEWilXNS
— Game 7 (@game7__) September 8, 2020
Following two tremendous efforts in Games 3 and 4 that brought the Raptors back to life, the team came out flat in Game 5. Very flat.
Some suggested that it was the byproduct of being tired, but Lowry dismissed that after the fact.
“Nope,” he said. “Just didn’t play well enough.”
The 34-year-old also understands what is going to be on the line in Game 6.
“It’s the playoffs,” he said.
“You learn from it, make adjustments, and continue to grow. Right now we’re on the brink of elimination, so we’re literally fighting for our lives on the basketball floor. It’s win or go home.”
The Raptors are a championship ball club for a reason. They know how to buckle down when the moment calls for it, and they refuse to go down without a fight.
Whatever it was that ailed them on Monday afternoon, they will do their very best to address it by Game 6.
But there is only so much that can be done when a talent disparity exists. And that may be the case here. There is a reason why two games in this series were blowouts, and one of the Raptors’ victories came by a miraculous last-second three pointer.
If the Celtics are simply the more deep and talented group, barring a miracle or bad showing by Boston, there is little Toronto will ultimately be able to do.
Game 6 between the Raptors and Celtics will take place on Wednesday.
The winner of the series will go on to face the winner of the Miami Heat’s second-round match-up against the Milwaukee Bucks.