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New-look Raptors visit Grizzlies to kick off long road trip on TSN

RJ Barrett Toronto Raptors RJ Barrett - The Canadian Press

The new-look Toronto Raptors, who shipped out OG Anunoby in a trade over the weekend, open up a six-game road trip with a stop in Memphis to face Ja Morant and the Grizzlies on Wednesday. 

Watch the Raptors take on the Grizzlies LIVE tonight on TSN4, and the TSN App, with coverage starting at 7:30pm ET / 4:30pm PT. 

Anunoby was traded alongside Precious Achiuwa and Malachi Flynn to the New York Knicks on Saturday in exchange for guards Immanuel Quickley and RJ Barrett, as well as a second-round draft pick.

The two new additions helped the Raptors defeat the Cleveland Cavaliers on Monday, combining for 33 points in 57 minutes on the court in a 124-121 victory over the Cleveland Cavaliers.

Now the team heads out on the road for a trip out west that starts in Memphis and makes stops in Sacramento, Oakland to play the Golden State Warriors, Los Angeles for a back-to-back against the Lakers and Clippers and finally in Utah to battle the Jazz. 

Western road trips were historically a harbinger of doom for this franchise, but they've fared well in extended trips west in recent years. In series of five-or-more games against strictly Western Conference opponents on the road, the Raptors have gone even or held a winning record in six of seven opportunities over the past six seasons.

From the franchise's inaugural season through the 2014-15 campaign though, they held a winning record in just two of 17 such road trips, and an overall record of 25-66. 

"I thought I didn't have to do that again," said Barrett, whose Knicks were on the road for eight of their last 10 games before he was traded to the Raptors. "Those are tough, man. Those are not easy at all.

"But you stay together with the team, and as we're figuring things out, this would be a good test for us. I'm excited to see how we do on this trip."

Quickley echoed the sentiment after the game against the Cavaliers. "Just trying to get to know these guys off the court, on the court, knowing where they want the ball and things like that," he said. "I think the road benefits a lot for that."

After losing a starting forward in Anunoby and two rotation regulars off the bench, head coach Darko Rajakovic will have to figure out what his new rotation will look like during this road trip.

"It's going to be game to game," said Rajakovic. "We're going to try really to develop the chemistry between the players and really get to see which lineups work best ... We're learning a lot about this group right now."

Toronto's opponent on Wednesday has had a tough start to the season with star guard Morant suspended for the first 25 games in connection to social media activity. 

After three-straight playoffs berths in the past three seasons, including two division titles and two 50-plus win seasons, the Grizzlies have stumbled to an 11-22 record that puts them third from the bottom of the Western Conference in early January. 

The Grizzlies have begun to right the ship with Morant back, as he's averaged 25.3 points and 8.1 assists per game and led the team to a 5-2 record in games he has started. Their last win without Morant on the court came on December 6, against the Detroit Pistons.