Raptors SG Fred VanVleet couldn’t be more excited to have Pascal Siakam back
Raptors.com reporter Vivek Jacob captured VanVleet’s excitement on video in the tunnel prior to the game.
Fred's so happy to have his Day 1 back 🥺pic.twitter.com/7rVwl3KPqp
— Vivek Jacob (@vivekmjacob) November 7, 2021
VanVleet is seen in the video hugging and laughing with teammate Pascal Siakam.
Siakam made his season debut Sunday, following off-season shoulder surgery. Siakam tore his labrum and had surgery in June and has not played since.
The All-Star forward was a key piece of the Raptors’ 2019 championship team. He burst onto the scene that season. Alongside Kawaii Leonard and Kyle Lowry, the Raptors went on to capture the NBA title.
Leonard left that following off-season, then Lowry, the longtime Raptor, left this past off-season. That has left Siakam and VanVleet as the leaders of the team.
There are a lot of new faces on the team this season, so Siakam’s presence is welcomed. Unfortunately, it did not prove fruitful Sunday as the Nets beat the Raptors 116-103.
The loss dropped Toronto to 6-5 on the young season. In the loss, Siakam played 25 minutes in his first game back, which is encouraging. He poured in 15 points on 5-12 shooting, grabbing 4 rebounds a steal and two blocks.
The depth and talent in the Eastern Conference is going to make it difficult for Toronto to hang around. But head coach Nick Nurse is utilizing a deep rotation. As Siakam rounds back into shape, the Raptors hope to make another deep run in the post season.