Raptors' Rapid Recap - New Jersey Nets 116 - Toronto Raptors 103


-The Toronto Raptors finished on the losing side of history in their 116 to 103 loss to the New Jersey Nets this afternoon in London, England.  The game marked the NBA's first regular season endeavour in Europe, but it wasn't a pretty one for a Raptors club that fell apart late, dropping their 45th game of the year.

-The Nets used a 38 point fourth quarter to blow open what was a back-and-forth affair, and they got great inside play from the duo of Kris Humphries and Brook Lopez to lead the way.  The two posted a combined 43 points and 19 rebounds and with some help from guys like Deron Williams (16 points and 11 assists) and Damion James (15 points and 7 rebounds on 5 of 6 shooting).

-On the other side of the fence we had the Dinos.  Yes, DeMar DeRozan had one of his best offensive games of the year, a 30 point effort on 12 of 19 shooting.  However he didn't get a ton of help.  Jose Calderon may have dished out 12 dimes but he, James Johnson and Amir Johnson were a combined 6 of 24 from the field.  Amir was particularly horrid on this afternoon, a rarity, finishing with a measly 8 points, 4 rebounds, no blocks, and one near wrestling match with Lopez.  Oh...and he was a beautiful -29 on the day.

-Again though, it was the fourth quarter that was the turning point in this one.  Up until then, Toronto had a slight advantage in most of the statistical categories but the Nets pumped up the effort late, keeping the Raps in disarray on offence while scoring efficiently themselves.  As a result New Jersey ended up narrowly winning the rebounding, free-throw, 3-point and blocks categories, and were much better in the paint when it counted.

-Of course the Raps get another shot at the same time tomorrow as the Nets/Raps UK experience reaches its conclusion.  However considering Toronto is fighting for draft lottery positioning with this very opponent, they may want to put on another fourth quarter performance like today's.

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