Afternoon start time could spell trouble for Raptors in Game 7
Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports

The Toronto Raptors and early start times in the NBA playoffs are like oil and water - they don't mix under any circumstances.

Game 7 of the Eastern Conference semifinals between the Raptors and Miami Heat goes down on Sunday at the Air Canada Centre with tip-off set for 3:30 p.m. ET.

If history is any indication, the Atlantic Division champions and their "We The North" movement could be in for a world of hurt with their season on the line.

Dating back to the franchise's first postseason berth during the 1999-00 campaign, the Raptors have lost all 13 of their playoff games which tip-off prior to 4 p.m.

Toronto Raptors' Playoff History (Early Games)

Date Start Time Opposition Final Score
4/23/2000 12:30 p.m. New York Knicks 92-88
4/30/2000 12:30 p.m. New York Knicks 87-80
4/22/2001 12:30 p.m. New York Knicks 92-85
4/29/2001 12:30 p.m. New York Knicks 97-89
5/13/2001 3:00 p.m. Philadelphia 76ers 84-79
4/21/2007 12:30 p.m. New Jersey Nets 96-91
4/20/2008 12:30 p.m. Orlando Magic 114-100
4/26/2008 3:00 p.m. Orlando Magic 106-94
4/19/2014 12:30 p.m. Brooklyn Nets 94-87
5/4/2014 1:00 p.m. Brooklyn Nets 104-103
4/18/2015 12:30 p.m. Washington Wizards 93-86
4/16/2016 12:30 p.m. Indiana Pacers 100-90
4/23/2016 3:00 p.m. Indiana Pacers 100-83

(courtesy: Basketball-Reference.com)

There is reason for Raptors fans to be optimistic, though.

The team hasn't lost consecutive games since they fell to the Boston Celtics and Houston Rockets on March 23 and 25, respectively. Toronto is also a perfect 5-0 this postseason when coming off a loss.

- with h/t to TSN's Josh Lewenberg

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Afternoon start time could spell trouble for Raptors in Game 7
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