The Toronto Raptors have been on a downward spiral of late and it’s not looking pretty. At 15-20, they are 2-8 in their last ten games and are 11th in the Eastern Conference. The only player you can say is giving it his all is Pascal Siakam. He leads the team in points, rebounds and assists this season. As for the rest of the players, head coach Nick Nurse publicly called out his teammates for a lack of effort and strength. It is a bad look for the head coach to blame the players for their injuries. You can’t do this alone.
Toronto lost to the Grizzlies 119-106 on Thursday night and Nurse was not happy after the game. Once again he publicly ripped the players in front of the cameras and media. Did it ever cross his mind that this might not be the way to approach things? Besides the championship the team won in his first season as head coach, what did Nurse do for the Raptors?
NBA betting sites have the Raptors (+6000) to win the Finals this season.
I’ve never seen Nick Nurse trash his own team like that. pic.twitter.com/xDKJBiT4th
— Sid Seixeiro (@Sid_Seixeiro) December 30, 2022
Is Nick Nurse approaching this all the wrong way?
There have been several occasions this season when Nurse has officially called out the players. Gary Trent Jr. was accused of a poor defensive effort and called out Chris Butcher for a generally ineffective player. It doesn’t take a genius to figure out that this isn’t the right way to talk to the players. Keep conversations to one side when the camera isn’t recording every word you say.
After last night’s defeat, Nurse made these comments about the team.
“It was as bad as it could get. Impossible plays, or maybe once every 7 years. We have to focus and communicate and play hard. – Nick Nurse
Maybe the Raptors coach meets his criteria. Toronto used their eighth lineup of the season last night in 35 games this season. This is more than half of their game when they have a different starting lineup. Injuries have certainly been blamed for that and Nurse can’t take all the blame for that, but what about the five starters they put together last night who have logged any minutes as a team this season?
Nurse continued to talk to the group about this.
“Lately we have been lacking in playing to protect our identity. We are now a little apart. We’ve got to hang in there, get to work and show what we’re talking about. Hopefully they will go out there and make it happen. Soon they will get tired of this and start playing. – Nick Nurse
Another reason the Raptors are struggling is because Nurse refuses to adjust to the system they are used to running. Chances are teams watched the film and gave little hints to help the other team win the game. Nurse may just need to go back to the drawing board and come up with an effective strategy to help the Raptors win.