New Orleans Pelicans: 3 keys in rematch vs. Toronto Raptors

(Photo by Julio Aguilar/Getty Images)
(Photo by Julio Aguilar/Getty Images) /
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New Orleans Pelicans, Lonzo Ball
Lonzo Ball #2 of the New Orleans Pelicans (Photo by Julio Aguilar/Getty Images) /

New Orleans Pelicans: Lonzo Ball’s defense

The defense of Lonzo Ball

I wrote that Lonzo Ball is on a path to make the All-Defensive team and his case has only gotten stronger.

Lonzo put the clamps on Shai Gilgeous-Alexander in the last game, holding him to just eight points. He did the same to Kyle Lowry at times in the first matchup with the Raptors, especially in the second half.

Eric Bledsoe was able to slow down Fred VanVleeet and force him into tough perimeter shots, so if Lonzo can keep Lowry in check, the Pelicans should have a good chance against Toronto.

Related Story. A New Year's love letter to Lonzo Ball Stans. light

Lowry killed the Pelicans in the first half of their last meeting and ended the game with 18 points and 10 assists, which is the most anyone has scored on Lonzo this season.

He has stepped up his defensive game since and has looked very confident on that end, flying into passing lanes and being a general menace.

Lonzo needs to keep that same energy against Lowry and then punish him on the other end by being aggressive with the ball.

Lowry is a great defender but Lonzo Ball is quicker and should be able to get into the lane.

The defensive improvement of Lonzo Ball has been one of the early storylines for the Pelicans and will be key in the re-match with Toronto.