It’s two losses in two nights for the Toronto Raptors against the New York Knicks, which brings the season series for both clubs to two games a piece.
After losing to the Knicks at home 94-99 yesterday, the Raptors once against fall in New York, this time 110-84. Ouch. It definitely didn’t help that Rudy Gay wasn’t in the line up, who is currently out due to a sore back.
Scoring was not an issue for the Raptors tonight (for the first three quarters, at least). Toronto got solid contributions from all starters with DeMar DeRozan leading the way with 17 points on seven-of-fifteen shooting. The Raptors could have definitely worked on the ball movement more as their 13 assists versus the 18 turnovers isn’t exactly the best offensive showing.
John Lucas is the only Raptors that really struggled, going two-for-eleven including zero-for-seven from downtown. His struggles continued from last night’s game.
This is what lost the game for the Raptors right from the opening tip. The Raptors had no answer for the animal known as Carmelo Anthony. Landry Fields and Alan Anderson did the best they could be Anthony was great all night, finishing with 28 points on nine-of-nineteen shooting. When it wasn’t Anthony lighting it up, JR Smith was playing his role as the Knicks’ offensive spark off the bench and Raymond Felton, Pablo Prigioni and Jason Kidd all did great jobs getting the ball moving. Toronto even tried playing some zone very briefly but to no avail. The Raptors simply did not have an answer tonight.
The Raptors were out-rebounded 35-44 tonight and that quite simply will not get it done. Other than Jonas Valanciunas, no Raptor had more than seven rebounds. This is simply not acceptable. Kenyon Martin had seven rebounds (four offensive) for the Knicks and is quietly playing an important role for them leading into the playoffs. Kudos to him for rejuvenating his career.
Game Ball: Carmelo Anthony
It was just another day at the office for Anthony. After scoring 37 against Toronto last night, he torched them for 28 tonight. He is the second leading scorer in the league and it definitely showed tonight. The Raptors simply did not have an answer for him at any point.
Image source: RICK MADONIK / TORONTO STAR