We knew this was coming, Raptors coach Dwane Casey already said as much and added Game 2 could be the same.
But now it is official via the Raptors, no Jonas Valanciunas for Toronto in Game 1 against Cleveland Tuesday night.
The Raptors odds of winning a game in this series drop steeply without Valanciunas. They need him to he punish the Cavaliers inside — Tristan Thompson isn’t going to be able to handle him. Plus, more Valanciunas means a slower pace, which helps the Raptors. Finally, his ability to score inside makes it difficult for the Cavaliers to play their Kevin Love/Channing Frye front line that has worked well this postseason.
We’ll see if he’s back for Game 3.