"We have the potential to do some damage."
A stunning 10-point victory over the Hawks has just landed the Raptors their first playoffs spot in two years.
After beating Atlanta 108-118 on Tuesday night, Toronto is set to host playoff games at Scotiabank Arena for the first time since their 2019 NBA championship, as the playoffs in 2020 were held in the Florida Bubble.
The hard-earned feat appears to have not been lost on Raptors star Fred VanVleet, who passionately spoke about the team's potential to overcome the gauntlet.
"If we're rolling, I think we have the potential to do some damage — some real, real, real damage in the playoffs — if we got it going," VanVleet told reporters during a post-game interview.
Freddie also talked about how it felt to sit out of the playoffs last year despite Toronto having a roster filled with star players.
"And fast forward to having a group nobody really thought was going to be any good, being here in this position is... it's good," he added.
These past couple of days have been emotional for Raptors fans, having just watched their team suffer a 114-109 loss to their former icon Kyle Lowry and the Heat — a long-awaited moment that perfectly encapsulated the term "bittersweet."
The Raptors are scheduled to host Philadelphia on Thursday, which will give fans and critics a playoff preview of the team's young roster.
Toronto will face Houston on Friday at home before ending their regular season on Sunday against the Knicks in New York.
Hopefully, the team will generate the same sense of excitement amongst fans that was sorely missing during these two years of the pandemic.
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