New Orleans (5-30) at Toronto (14-23)

Partly Cloudy Currently: Toronto, ON
Temp: 61° F
  • Game info: 1:00 pm EST Sun Jan 16, 2005
  • TV: TSN
Preview | Box Score | Recap

With Baron Davis returning to form, the New Orleans Hornets look to continue their best run of the season when they visit the Toronto Raptors.

New Orleans has won three of four, easily its best stretch of the season. The Hornets still have the worst record in the league, but they are no longer on pace to set a new mark for NBA futility, a distinction that belongs to the 1972-73 Philadelphia 76ers, who were 9-73.

Davis, who returned from a back injury in late December, scored 22 points, including seven key free throws in the final 1:03 as the Hornets beat the Portland Trail Blazers 112-106 on Friday.

Davis is averaging 21.2 points and 9.7 assists in his last four games.

“Baron’s getting healthier … He’s just doing a great job of distributing the basketball and leading the team right now and we’re all falling in and hitting shots,” Hornets center P.J. Brown said. “After all the hard times we had closing out games in the fourth quarter we’re doing a better job of that. We’ve got young guys maturing. We’re just growing as a team and it’s going to get better and better.”

Dan Dickau made six 3-pointers and scored a career-high 25 points against the Trail Blazers. He is averaging 16 points in his last four games.

Lee Nailon added 22 points, Chris Andersen had a season-high 15, and Brown had 10 points and 12 rebounds as the Hornets outrebounded the Trail Blazers 46-30. New Orleans had 19 offensive rebounds, leading to 25 second-chance points.

Toronto is likely looking forward to a return home after losing its 11th straight road game, 106-97 to the Philadelphia 76ers on Friday.

The Raptors are 2-18 on the road. At home, though, they have won two straight and five of six.

“Our guys have got to challenge themselves,” Raptors forward Eric Williams said. “They have to understand that hard fouls and not giving up easy layups is part of winning. We have to get our young guys to understand. It’s going to be a process.”

Donyell Marshall scored 20 points, and Morris Peterson and Jalen Rose each had 18 for the Raptors, who are 6-7 since trading Vince Carter to New Jersey on Dec 17.

Peterson, coming off a career-best 37-point performance Wednesday night against Boston in which he made seven 3-pointers, shot 6-for-12, including 1-of-5 from 3-point range.

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