The Toronto Raptors were able to defeat the Chicago Bulls on Saturday night, and the theme for Toronto in the game was balance. Six players scored in double-figures for the Raptors, led by Kyle Lowry‘s 16. A big part of that balance? Reserve power forward Patrick Patterson.
Patterson, in his third year from the University of Kentucky, had 12 points and three rebounds in a little over 20 minutes of action. His efficiency is what was most impressive, as he went 4-of-5, including 2-of-2 on 3-point attempts.
His ability to stretch the floor made it difficult for Chicago on defense, because putting a big man to defend him on the perimeter meant more opportunities for the defense inside. On the other hand, a small forward or guard would have been posted up by the stronger Patterson. Patterson is also versatile as he can play both power forward and center. Providing that type of efficiency will certainly get him more minutes, and possibly a starting role down the line.
Patterson was recently acquired in a trade that sent Rudy Gay to the Sacramento Kings. It was mainly to create salary cap space, but as shown tonight, Patterson can provide more than just a cheap option going forward. An immediate analysis suggests that both teams were winners in the trade.
Chicago’s next game is against the Orlando Magic, while the Raptors are scheduled to face the Charlotte Bobcats. Both teams are looking to bounce back after rough starts to the season, although Toronto (9-13) has won three of their last four games.