The Toronto Raptors used a strong second half to beat the Cleveland Cavaliers tonight 98 to 91, their fourth win in their last five games. Terrence Ross and Jonas Valanciunas combined for 38 points in the victory and the club held the Cavs to only 39 per cent shooting from the field.
Toronto however didn't get off to a great start. The Cavs were up 22 to 16 after one, and held a slim lead over Toronto at half.
But a 37 point third quarter explosion by the Raps allowed them to take the lead for good and snapped a six game winning streak by the Cavs.
As noted, Terrence Ross and Jonas Valanciunas were big in this one but not only in terms of scoring. Ross did a great job defensively on Kyrie Irving, helping the Cavs' All-Star to a horrific 3 of 16 night from the field, and Valanciunas grabbed a team-high 8 rebounds, four of them on the offensive end.
And what can you say about Mr. Steady, Kyle Lowry. Lowry only hit 5 of his 13 shots but had 9 assists, 6 rebounds and 3 steals as well. He too frustrated Irving all evening.
The win wasn't a blowout though as not only did the Cavs have the better start, but also staged a late comeback that got them within six points. As was the case against the Washington Wizards earlier in the week, Toronto took its foot off the gas pedal a bit too early allowing their opponent to make a game of it.
But down the stretch the Dinos made three of their final four free-throws to seal the win, and got to the 30 win plateau in just their 55th game.
The Cavs got 21 points and 11 rebounds from Luol Deng and new acquisition Spencer Hawes made his debut with 7 points and 10 rebounds. Canadian Anthony Bennett played 15 minutes and notched 9 points and 3 rebounds.
Up next for Toronto, an enticing matchup with the Orlando Magic on Sunday afternoon.