John E. Sokolowski-US PRESSWIRE
Big games from Lowry and Valanciunas not enough as Raptors lose home-opener to Pacers.
The Toronto Raptors had the momentum.
But they couldn't sustain it.
The club dropped their home opener to the Indiana Pacers tonight, 90 to 88, as a George Hill runner with under three seconds left was the difference.
The Raptors had a chance to tie or win at the buzzer, but Andrea Bargnani drew air on his buzzer-beating attempt, and the Dinos start the season with a loss.
It wasn't all bad though.
Kyle Lowry was sensational in his Toronto debut posting 21 points, 7 rebounds, 8 assists and 5 steals. His play set the tone for his teammates who repeatedly looked to attack, even if they didn't necessarily connect.
And Jonas Valanciunas was huge in his first NBA game, notching a double-double (12 points, 10 assists) in 23 minutes.
But there wasn't a lot of individual positives outside of those two for Toronto as while Andrea Bargnani had 16 points, he hit only 4 of 15 shots. And newly minted $40M dollar man DeMar DeRozan was 5 of 14, and nailed to the bench for the bulk of the fourth quarter.
He had 14 of his 25 in the fourth quarter, and single-handily pulled the club into the win column tonight. Paul George and Roy Hibbert both had 14 points, but it was West who set the tone late, and Indy leaves Toronto with a W that the Dinos should have secured.