Toronto Raptors v Chicago Bulls

Canada

National Basketball Association

Eastern Conference

Thursday 19th October 2017

Tip Off 19.30

Toronto Raptors 117 Chicago Bulls 100, attendance 19,800

Raptors Starters ;

Norman Powell : 15pts, 4 reb, 1 ast, 1 stl

Serge Ibaka : 8 pts, 4 reb, 2 blk

Jonas Valanciunas : 23pts, 15 reb, 2 ast, 2 stl

DeMar DeRozan : 11pts, 6 reb, 5 ast, 2 blk, 1 stl

Kyle Lowry : 12pts, 4 Feb, 9 ast, 1 stl

Used Subs ;

CJ Miles, OG Anunoby, Fred Van Vleet, Jakob Poeltl, Delon Wright, Pascal Siakam, Alfonzo McKinnie

Bulls Starters ;

Paul Zipser : 7pts, 5 reb, 3 ast, 1 stl

Lauri Markkanen : 17pts, 8 reb, 1 blk

Robin Lopez : 18pts, 8 reb, 2 ast, 1 stl

Justin Holiday : 15pts, 4 reb, 2 ast, 1 stl, 1 blk

Jerian Grant : 7pts, 2 reb, 7 ast, 2 stl

Used Subs :

Denzel Valentine, Cristiano Felico, Ryan Arcidiacono, David Nwaba, Quincy Pondexter, Kay Felder, Antonio Blakeney

@ Air Canada Centre

40 Bay Street

Toronto

ON M5J 2X2

CAN $123 + CAN $15.25 fees.

No Programme.

The Air Canada Centre is in the heart of Downtown Toronto, immeadiatly to the south of Union Station, which it is connected to via a pedestrian walkway. It was opened in February 1999 and has a capacity of 19,800 for basketball. It is also home to Toronto Maple Leafs, of the National Hockey League and Toronto Rock of the National Lacrosse League. It was announced in August, that from July 2018, it will be renamed Scotiabank Arena, following a new sponsorship deal of CAD $800 million over 20 years.

Tonight was the season opener and despite being announced as a 19,800 sell out, there were quite a few empty seats, so the actual ‘attendance’ in the building was probably around a thousand less than claimed. The game itself ended up pretty one sided after the Raptors outscored the Bulls 33-14 in the second quarter to lead by 58- 37 at the interval. Despite the Bulls edging the second half by 4 points, the damage was done. CJ Miles scored an impressive 22 points from the bench on his debut for the Raptors

As the Raptors are the only non-American team in the N.B.A. it was the first time I have been to a top level game where the fans are there to watch the match, rather than being there just to eat and drink throughout, getting in and out of their seats every ten minutes, paying little attention to the actual action on the court. The same thing happened when I visited Canada to watch Montreal Impact play a Major League Soccer match at the Olympic Stadium…..it must be a Canadian thing and the match day experience is so much better for it !