Raptors 122, Clippers 110
TORONTO (AP)—Balanced scoring helped the Toronto Raptors gain ground atop the Atlantic Division standings.
Morris Peterson added 18 points for the Raptors (25-23), who have won three straight.
“It’s unbelievable,” said Toronto’s Jose Calderon. “Everybody in this locker room is better than they were in the preseason because we’ve learned to play as a team.”
A cheer went up in the Raptors’ locker room when Tyronn Lue hit a jumper at the buzzer to lift Atlanta to an overtime victory against New Jersey, putting Toronto three games ahead of the Nets.
The Raptors haven’t been .500 this late in the season since 2001-02.
“Give them a lot of credit, they played well, they made shots,” Sam Cassell said. “Everything we did to try and stop them, they did better.”
Ford and Calderon, Toronto’s two point guards, combined for 27 points and 19 assists. Calderon had 10 points and 12 assists and started in place of Ford, who has been bothered by a sore right ankle.
“Things are going well right now with the situation, but it’s not my call,” Peterson said of the point guard shuffle.
Toronto scored a season-high 66 points in the first half and shot 70 percent, tying a franchise record for shooting percentage in a half.
Bosh had 19 points to help Toronto to a 66-54 halftime lead.
Bosh’s driving layup gave the Raptors an 18-point lead—their biggest of the game—with 6:10 left in the third quarter. Peterson had three 3-pointers late in the game to seal the victory.
Toronto shot 12-for-20 from beyond the arc.
Garbajosa, who had struggled in recent weeks, made four 3-pointers.
The Clippers’ road trip continues Tuesday in New York. … The Raptors, who have won five straight at home, play five of their next seven games at home. … The Raptors didn’t earn win No. 25 last season until March 21.