TORONTO - Rudy Gay continues to prove his worth for the Toronto Raptors.
Gay scored 17 of his 32 points in the third quarter to lift Toronto to a 100-98 victory over the visiting New York Knicks on Friday — the Raptors' sixth win in seven outings.
The Raptors are 7-3 since the deal that brought Gay to Toronto three weeks ago.
DeMar DeRozan added 18 points, while Kyle Lowry finished with 15, Amir Johnson added 12 and John Lucas chipped in with 10 for Toronto (23-33).
Carmelo Anthony scored 32 to top the Knicks (32-20), who dropped their fourth straight decision. J.R. Smith added 19, while Amare Stoudemire finished with 14.
The Raptors played a day after they were relatively quiet on the NBA trade deadline, acquiring Sebastian Telfair as insurance at the point guard position. But Toronto did their major dealing three weeks earlier when they acquired Gay from Memphis in the trade that sent Jose Calderon to Detroit and Ed Davis to Memphis.
The new Raptor shot 11 for 23 from the field, and is a clear fan favourite, bringing the crowd to its feet with chants of "Ru-Dy" through the final couple of minutes.
The Raptors led by as much as 13 points and were up 79-70 heading into the final quarter in a game that had seen 13 lead changes to that point.
Toronto saw its advantage disappear though, and a Smith layup tied the game 93-93 with 2:39 to play. Gay and Anthony traded baskets and the scored remained tied heading into the final minute.
With the entire noisy Air Canada Centre crowd on its feet, Lowry scored on a hook shot from six feet to give the Raptors a two-point edge with 29 seconds to go.
Tyson Chandler had the chance to pull the Knicks even, but missed on one-of-two free-throw attempts, and then Gay, fouled by Chandler, put the game away with a pair of free throws of his own, much to the delight of one of the loudest crowds this season.
The Raptors had beaten the Knicks 92-88 at New York last week as part of their five-game win streak that was snapped Wednesday in an 88-82 loss to Memphis. The Knicks were also coming off a loss, a 125-91 rout by Indiana two nights earlier.
While the Raptors made the one small move Thursday, acquiring Telfair (he didn't dress Friday), trade talk in Toronto had focused around the player the Raptors didn't move — much-maligned forward Andrea Bargnani. The big Italian forward was booed loudly by the crowd when he checked into the game in the third quarter and when he was whistled for a foul in the fourth.
Raptors coach Dwane Casey is getting fed up with the booing.
"I don't think it's fair just because a guy's been hurt, he's been out," Casey said after Friday morning's shootaround. "Let's pull for him. If you're a fan, let's be fans for our guys, not for the opposing team's guys.
"Lets pull for our guys, if they're down a little bit let's pull them up instead of pushing them down."
Bargnani finished with zero points in 13 minutes.
Lowry drained all four of his three-point attempts in a high-scoring first quarter, and the teams went into the second tied 32-32.
Toronto's bench struggled in a second quarter that saw the Raptors shoot just 26 per cent from the field. Kidd connected on a three-pointer to put the Knicks up by five two minutes before halftime and the visitors went into the break up 51-48.
Gay took over in the fourth, shooting 7 for 9 and sinking a three with just over three minutes left that gave Toronto a 13-point lead.
NOTES: During a fourth-quarter timeout, a fan ran onto the floor, making it to midcourt before he was tackled by a half a dozen security guards and hauled away by his arms and legs. . . Raptors rookie Terrence Ross didn't dress because of a flu bug. . . The Raptors host Washington on Monday then head to Cleveland to face the Cavaliers on Wednesday. . . Canadian rapper Kardinal Offishall had a courtside seat.
- Sports & Recreation
- New York Knicks
- Rudy Gay
- Toronto Raptors