TOKYO – The Toronto Raptors may not be favoured by many to defend their NBA title after losing star Kawhi Leonard to the Los Angeles Clippers, but head coach Nick Nurse said predictions didn't matter and his team would forge a new path to the championship.
In one of the wildest close seasons of free agency in recent memory, Leonard joined up with Paul George to form a formidable pair under Doc Rivers, while Anthony Davis joined LeBron James at the Los Angeles Lakers to create a monster duo of their own.
With Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving signing with the Brooklyn Nets - although the former is expected to miss the year with a torn Achilles - it's easy to see how other teams are only becoming stronger by forming blockbuster pairings.
But Nurse said he felt good about his own team and they were setting "super high" goals again this season.
"Predictions don't really factor too much into what you do," Nurse told reporters in Tokyo on Monday ahead of two preseason games against the Houston Rockets.