Denver beats Toronto in rare game in Edmonton
Forward Chris Bosh scored 17 points and point guard Jose Calderon had 18 points for the Raptors, who trailed 24-17 after the first quarter of the exhibition and never seriously challenged the rest of the way.
Toronto, which turned the ball over 20 times and shot just 46 per cent from the field,
finished the preseason 4-4. The Raptors plays its opener Oct. 29 in Philadelphia.
“For whatever reason we’re not shooting the ball very well,” Toronto coach Sam Mitchell said. “Our defense is not that great, but it’s not that bad. We’re just not making the shots.”
Anthony shot 5-for-9 from the field and grabbed six rebounds in 28:25 before 17,534 fans at Rexall Place.
The last time the NBA played in Edmonton, the Raptors defeated the then-Vancouver—now Memphis—Grizzlies 110-84 in 1999.
The Raptors struggled without center Jermaine O’Neal. The six-time All-Star got into foul trouble early and played just 13:25 before sitting out the second half because of tightness in his back.
He said he’ll be ready for practice Friday.
“It (the back problem) caused a little tightness in my leg,” O’Neal said. “It’s more of a maintenance thing.”
The 12-year veteran, acquired from the Indiana Pacers in an offseason trade, finished 1-for-2, with one rebound and one blocked shot. He missed half of last season with a knee injury.
Bosh was 5-for-8 from the field with three rebounds. Calderon was 5-for-11 to go with five rebounds and seven assists. He made two 3-pointers.
The Nuggets, playing without starting point guard Anthony Carter (given the night off) and guard Allen Iverson (right ankle sprain) took advantage of O’Neal’s absence to shred the Raptors’ second-team defense.
They led 58-47 at halftime and 80-71 after the third quarter. When the traffic got heavy inside, they kicked the ball outside for five 3-point field goals, including three by guard J.R. Smith.
Denver wraps up the preseason with a game against the Los Angeles Clippers in California Friday.