2018–19 Toronto Raptors season
|2018–19 Toronto Raptors season|
|Head coach||Nick Nurse|
|General manager||Bobby Webster|
|Owners||Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment|
|Place||Division: 1st (Atlantic)|
Conference: 2nd (Eastern)
|Playoff finish||NBA Champions|
(Defeated Warriors 4–2)
CTV (NBA Playoffs)
CTV2 (NBA Finals)
Citytv (NBA Finals)
RDS (in French)
The 2018–19 Toronto Raptors season was the 24th season of the franchise in the National Basketball Association (NBA). During the off-season, the Raptors acquired small forward Kawhi Leonard from the San Antonio Spurs after trading franchise star DeMar DeRozan. The season ended with the franchise's first NBA Finals appearance and first NBA championship, ending the City of Toronto's, Province of Ontario's, and Canada's 26-year championship drought if not counting Toronto FC’s 2017 MLS championship. The Raptors had the fifth best team defensive rating in the NBA.
On May 11, 2018, the Raptors fired Dwane Casey after the team was swept by the Cleveland Cavaliers for the second consecutive time in the postseason. On June 14, the Raptors promoted assistant coach Nick Nurse as their head coach. The Raptors played their home games at newly renamed Scotiabank Arena. For the first time since 2008–09, DeMar DeRozan (who spent his first nine seasons in the NBA with the Raptors) did not play for the Raptors, as he was traded, along with Jakob Poeltl and a protected 2019 first-round draft pick, to the San Antonio Spurs for Kawhi Leonard and Danny Green. Later, on February 7, 2019, at the trade deadline, the Memphis Grizzlies traded Marc Gasol to the Raptors for Jonas Valančiūnas, Delon Wright and C. J. Miles. The Raptors later signed Jeremy Lin. They finished the regular season with a 58–24 record, one less win than their franchise best the previous season, second best in the league for the second consecutive season, earning the second seed in the Eastern Conference.
In the playoffs, the Raptors defeated the Orlando Magic in five games in the first round. They edged the Philadelphia 76ers in seven games in the semifinals to make their first Eastern Conference Finals appearance since 2016, with Kawhi Leonard's buzzer-beater over Joel Embiid, giving the Raptors a 92–90 victory in the series-clinching game 7. The series was a rematch of the 2001 Eastern Conference Semifinals, where the Allen Iverson-led 76ers defeated the Vince Carter-led Raptors in seven games. The Raptors defeated the Milwaukee Bucks in the Eastern Conference Finals 4–2, winning the last four games of the series after being down 0–2 to become the sixth team to overcome that deficit. They won the Finals against the two-time defending NBA champion Golden State Warriors, also the first NBA Finals series that was played outside the United States. They beat the Warriors 4–2, becoming the first non-US team to win the NBA title. The Raptors were the first Atlantic Division team since the 2007–08 Boston Celtics and the first Eastern Conference team since the 2015–16 Cleveland Cavaliers to win the championship. Prior to the Raptors victory, the Atlantic Division had had the second longest title drought in the league. The Northwest Division will hold the record for having the longest championship drought of all divisions in the league, with the 1978–79 Seattle Supersonics being the last champion. This is also Toronto's first major sports championship since the Toronto Blue Jays won the 1993 World Series when not counting Toronto FC’s 2017 MLS championship.
The Raptors did not have a pick in the 2018 NBA draft. They had previously traded their selections to the Brooklyn Nets, who ended up drafting Džanan Musa, and to the Phoenix Suns, who ended up drafting George King.
|y – Toronto Raptors||58||24||.707||0.0||32–9||26–15||12–4||82|
|x – Philadelphia 76ers||51||31||.622||7.0||31–10||20–21||8–8||82|
|x – Boston Celtics||49||33||.598||9.0||28–13||21–20||10–6||82|
|x – Brooklyn Nets||42||40||.512||16.0||23–18||19–22||8–8||82|
|New York Knicks||17||65||.207||41.0||9–32||8–33||2–14||82|
|1||z – Milwaukee Bucks *||60||22||.732||–||82|
|2||y – Toronto Raptors *||58||24||.707||2.0||82|
|3||x – Philadelphia 76ers||51||31||.622||9.0||82|
|4||x – Boston Celtics||49||33||.598||11.0||82|
|5||x – Indiana Pacers||48||34||.585||12.0||82|
|6||x – Brooklyn Nets||42||40||.512||18.0||82|
|7||y – Orlando Magic *||42||40||.512||18.0||82|
|8||x – Detroit Pistons||41||41||.500||19.0||82|
|15||New York Knicks||17||65||.207||43.0||82|
Record vs opponents
|Eastern Conference||Western Conference|
|Atlantic Division||Northwest Division|
|New York||128–112||128–92||104–99||117–92||Oklahoma City||109–116||123–114*|
|Central Division||Pacific Division|
|Southeast Division||Southwest Division|
|Conference||36–16 (Home: 21–5; Away: 15–11)||Conference||22–8 (Home: 11–4; Away: 11–4)|
|Overall||58–24 (Home: 32–9; Away: 26–15)|
(* game decided in overtime)
|2018 pre-season game log|
Total: 4–1 (Home: 3–0; Road: 1–1)
|2018–19 season schedule|
|2018–19 game log|
Total: 58–24 (Home: 32–9; Road: 26–15)
|2018–19 season schedule|
|2019 playoff game log|
Total: 16–8 (Home: 9–4; Road: 7–4)
|C. J. Miles†||SF||40||1||562||68||22||18||10||218|
After all games.
‡Waived during the season
†Traded during the season
≠Acquired during the season
|July 18, 2018||To Toronto Raptors
|To San Antonio Spurs|
2019 protected Toronto first-round pick
|February 6, 2019||To Toronto Raptors
|To Philadelphia 76ers|
Draft rights to Emir Preldžić
2022 second-round pick
|February 7, 2019||To Toronto Raptors
|To Memphis Grizzlies|
2024 second-round draft pick
|To Toronto Raptors
|To Brooklyn Nets|
2021 second-round draft pick
|Fred VanVleet||July 6, 2018||2-yr/$18.1M|
|Lorenzo Brown||July 20, 2018||1-yr/$1.62M|
|Chris Boucher||July 20, 2018||Two-way contract||Golden State Warriors|
|Jordan Loyd||August 7, 2018||Two-way contract||Darüşşafaka|
|Greg Monroe||August 10, 2018||1-yr/$2.2M||Boston Celtics|
|Jeremy Lin||February 13, 2019||$697,000||Atlanta Hawks|
|Alfonzo McKinnie||Waived||Golden State Warriors|
|Lucas Nogueira||Unrestricted Free Agent||Baloncesto Fuenlabrada|
|Kay Felder||Waived||Raptors 905|
|Deng Adel||Waived||Raptors 905|
|Kyle Collinsworth||Waived||Raptors 905|
|Eric Moreland||Waived||Phoenix Suns|
|Malcolm Miller||Waived||Raptors 905|
|Pascal Siakam||Eastern Conference Player of the Week||November 12, 2018|||
|Nick Nurse||Eastern Conference Coach of the Month (November)||December 2, 2018|||
|Kawhi Leonard||Eastern Conference Player of the Week||December 3, 2018|||
|Kawhi Leonard||Eastern Conference Player of the Week||January 14, 2019|||
|Kawhi Leonard||NBA All-Star starter (3rd appearance)||January 24, 2019|||
|Kyle Lowry||NBA All-Star reserve (5th appearance)||January 31, 2019|||
|Kawhi Leonard||All-Defensive Second Team||May 22, 2019|||
|Kawhi Leonard||All-NBA Second Team||May 23, 2019|||
|Kawhi Leonard||NBA Finals MVP||June 14, 2019|||
|Pascal Siakam||NBA Most Improved Player||June 25, 2019|||
- "Teams Defense". NBA.com. Retrieved April 29, 2021.
- "Dwane Casey Relieved Of Head Coaching Duties". NBA.com. May 11, 2018. Retrieved May 11, 2018.
- "Raptors Name Nick Nurse Head Coach". NBA.com. June 14, 2018. Retrieved June 14, 2018.
- Murphy, Blake (July 1, 2018). "Air Canada Centre officially becomes Scotiabank Arena". Raptors Republic. Retrieved July 3, 2018.
- "Raptors send Toronto into raptures as they beat Warriors to take first NBA title". Guardian. June 11, 2019. Retrieved June 14, 2019.
- "2018-19 Toronto Raptors Roster and Regular season Stats". basketball-reference.com. Retrieved July 21, 2019.
- "Toronto Raptors Acquire Kawhi Leonard". NBA.com. July 18, 2018. Retrieved July 18, 2018.
- "Raptors Acquire Cash Considerations from Philadelphia". NBA.com. Retrieved February 6, 2019.
- "Raptors get Gasol from Grizzlies". tsn.ca. February 7, 2019. Retrieved February 8, 2019.
- "Brooklyn Nets Complete Trade with Toronto Raptors". NBA.com. February 7, 2019.
- "Raptors Re-Sign Fred VanVleet". NBA.com. July 6, 2018. Retrieved July 6, 2018.
- "Raptors Sign Brown and Boucher". NBA.com. July 20, 2018. Retrieved July 20, 2018.
- "Raptors Sign Loyd To Two-Way Contract". NBA.com. August 7, 2018. Retrieved August 7, 2018.
- "Raptors Sign Greg Monroe". NBA.com. August 10, 2018. Retrieved August 14, 2018.
- "Raptors Sign Jeremy Lin". NBA.com. February 13, 2019. Retrieved February 18, 2019.
- "Jeremy Lin Contract".
- "The @Raptors have waived forward Alfonzo McKinnie". Raptors MR on Twitter. July 17, 2018. Retrieved July 17, 2018.
- "Raptors Waive Four". NBA.com. October 12, 2018. Retrieved October 12, 2018.
- "Pascal Siakam Named Eastern Conference Player of the Week". NBA.com. November 12, 2018. Retrieved June 10, 2020.
- "Nick Nurse Named Eastern Conference Coach of the Month". NBA.com. December 2, 2018. Retrieved June 11, 2020.
- "Kawhi Leonard Named Eastern Conference Player of the Week". NBA.com. December 3, 2018. Retrieved June 10, 2020.
- "Kawhi Leonard Named Eastern Conference Player of the Week". NBA.com. January 14, 2019. Retrieved June 10, 2020.
- "NBA All-Star 2019 starters, captains revealed". NBA.com. January 24, 2019. Retrieved June 10, 2020.
- "Two-time Kia NBA All-Star MVP Westbrook and four first-time All-Stars headline reserves for 2019 NBA All-Star Game". NBA.com. January 31, 2019. Retrieved June 10, 2020.
- "Kawhi Leonard Named to NBA All-Defensive Second Team". NBA.com. May 22, 2019. Retrieved June 10, 2020.
- "Antetokounmpo, Harden lead All-NBA First Team". NBA.com. May 23, 2019. Retrieved June 10, 2020.
- "Kawhi Leonard joins elite company in winning Finals MVP". NBA.com. June 14, 2019. Retrieved June 10, 2020.
- "2019 NBA Awards: Complete list of winners". NBA.com. June 25, 2019. Retrieved June 10, 2020.