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Raptors 92, Bobcats 78

The SportsXchange

TORONTO -- The Toronto Raptors turned it on in the fourth quarter and pulled away from the Charlotte Bobcats, picking up a 92-78 win at the Air Canada Centre on Friday night.

Rudy Gay led all-scorers with 28 points while Amir Johnson set a new career-high with 21 rebounds.

Gerald Henderson scored 22 points to lead Charlotte, which lost for the 11th time in 12 games.

Toronto had led for virtually the entire game but Henderson gave the Bobcats their first lead since the first quarter when his two free-throws with 10:55 remaining put them ahead, 70-69.

After that, Toronto went on a 15-2 and held on the rest of the way.

Leading by six at halftime, the Raptors came out of the locker room quickly established a double-digit lead but as was the case all night, the Bobcats didn't let Toronto get out of sight.

Henderson's 3-pointer with 4:48 remaining in the third brought Charlotte made it a one-point game at 62-61 and tied it with just seconds remaining when Ben Gordon hit a 23-foot jumper to level the score at 68-68.

Sebastian Telfair gave the Raptors a one point lead heading into the final quarter when he hit a free-throw.

After a tight first quarter that saw the Raptors open up a four-point advantage at the end, Telfair came off the bench in the second and lead all scorers in the quarter with eight points.

His 20-foot pull-up jumper with less than seven minutes remaining in the half gave the Raptors a 13-point lead at 38-25. It was their biggest lead of the opening half before the Bobcats chipped away to make it 48-42 at the interval.

The Bobcats had the last possession of the half and had a chance to reduce the deficit but Ben Gordon missed a 3-pointer at the buzzer.

NOTES: DeSagana Diop (right knee soreness) and Ramon Sessions (left knee MCL sprain) were out of the lineup for Friday's game. ... Andrea Bargnani (right elbow sprain) was the only injury absence from the Raptors lineup. ... Raptors forward Linas Kleiza played for the Denver Nuggets when Bobcats coach Mike Dunlap was a Nuggets assistant from 2006-08. ... The Raptors return home after getting blown out 112-88 by the Celtics in Boston on Wednesday. ... Friday's game was the third of four meetings between the two teams this season. They split the two previous meetings this season with the home team coming out on top in both games. ... Dunlap revealed that Bobcats majority owner Michael Jordan lends advice to young players like second-year point guard Kemba Walker. "You always have (Jordan) who drops in periodically to kind of drop and he'll go through four or five points with Kemba and that's very powerful," Dunlap said prior to the game.
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