NBA Halloween: Playing trick-or-treat with each team’s early season trend

Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images
Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images /
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Toronto Raptors

Pascal Siakam is ready to be the guy: Treat

It’s a long season, but Pascal Siakam has wasted no time seizing the mantle left behind by Kawhi Leonard and making it his own. There were concerns about how he’d respond to being the No. 1 option on a playoff-caliber team, but Spicy P has silenced those doubts as quickly as he arrived onto the scene as the league’s Most Improved Player last year.

Through five games, Siakam is averaging 28.0 points, 9.2 rebounds and 3.8 assists a night. He’s seen an uptick in turnovers with the ball in his hands more often (3.6 per game), but he’s been incredibly efficient against opposing defenses’ best efforts, shooting 51 percent from the floor, 44.4 percent from deep and 96.3 percent from the foul line.

He’s getting to the charity stripe 5.4 times per game, which could stand to improve, but so far he’s been the best player on a 4-1 Toronto Raptors team hell-bent on reminding people Kawhi wasn’t the only reason they won the 2018-19 NBA title. With an elite two-way skill-set that gets better every year, Siakam seems poised to live up to his contract extension and then some.