Raptors’ Pascal Siakam is first player since 1992 to record 38-18-5 line in season opener
Per Tim Reynolds of the Associated Press, Siakam joins NBA icon Charles Barkley as the only two players who have posted similar stat lines in their first game of a season.
34p-18r-5a in regular-season openers, all time:
Charles Barkley, 1992.
Pascal Siakam, tonight.
End of list.
— Tim Reynolds (@ByTimReynolds) October 23, 2019
Siakam is now considered the focal point of the Raptors. This was confirmed when he inked a max contract worth $130 million in four years. And right off the bat, Siakam showcased that he’s worth every penny. Against the Pelicans, he shot 42.3 percent from the field, 2-of-5 from deep, and 1o-of-11 from the free-throw line. He was netted a +5 +/-. Though he fouled out, his contributions were enough to lock in the victory.
After he inked his hefty extension, Siakam,25, admitted that this is only the beginning of a great career:
“I don’t feel no limits at all,” Siakam said, per the Associated Press via CBC. “I feel like it’s only the beginning for me and there is so much more to come. I’m just excited about the future and the possibility to even get better and better from this, and knowing that it’s only been three years. I’m in the league for three years and there is so much more growth and things that I can improve on … so I don’t think I’m going to stop now.”
For Raptors fans, Siakam’s big opening night is a great indication that they have a shot at defending their title, contrary to what analysts say. It’s too early to tell, but this might be the beginning of the Siakam era in Toronto.