The Toronto Raptors bench is looking awfully depleted for Friday night’s game with most of the coaching staff out. It just keeps piling on for Toronto as Pascal Siakam was announced out due to health and safety protocols, the first of the kind for any Raptors player.
It will be the first game missed by any Raptor player this season for those reasons https://t.co/eRn1mgpcOK
— Doug Smith: Raptors (@SmithRaps) February 26, 2021
Head coach Nick Nurse and five of the assistants are out due to the same protocol issues and the loss of Siakam just adds to the issues for Friday night’s game against the Houston Rockets. The Raptors also named their head coach for the game, and it’s not Kyle Lowry like many had hoped.
Sergio Scariolo will be the Raptors' head coach tonight
— Marc Stein (@TheSteinLine) February 26, 2021
The COVID issues have hit just about every team in the league, although it’s rare to see nearly the entire coaching staff miss the game. A short-handed Raptors squad will have to find a way to beat a depleted Rockets team.
Siakam has been one of the best Raptors all year, and that’s a lot to say considering how good Fred VanVleet has been. Siakam is averaging a team-high 20.1 points per game with 7.5 boards and 4.8 assists.
With Siakam out of the picture, and with Nurse gone, it will be interesting to see who takes his place in the starting lineup.
For the Rockets they have lost nine in a row and Friday’s game seems like the perfect opportunity to get back in the win column with Toronto’s shortage of coaches and without Siakam.
However, they have been a disaster the past couple of weeks and greatly miss Christian Wood, who is still out with an injury. The Raptors game will be interesting and the bench will be mighty empty without Siakam and much of their coaching staff.