Sunday, April 14, 2013
Rapid Reaction: Raptors 93, Nets 87
By Mike Mazzeo
WHAT IT MEANS: The Brooklyn Nets will face the Miami Heat in the second round of the playoffs -- if both teams advance that far.
The Nets' minuscule chances of getting the No. 3 seed ended when they lost to the Toronto Raptors 93-87 on Sunday afternoon at Air Canada Center.
The Nets (47-33, 24-17 road), who fell to 30-5 against sub-.500 teams, had won their previous four games. They had locked up at least the No. 4 seed on Friday night in Indiana.
Brooklyn trailed by as many as 21 on Sunday before cutting its deficit to two late in the fourth quarter. The Nets wouldn't get any closer.
Deron Williams led the Nets with 30 points and seven assists. For the second straight game, he banged his left knee while trying to get around a screen late in the fourth quarter and went down, but stayed in.
Brook Lopez missed his first six shots and finished with 16 points. Joe Johnson shot just 4-for-16 from the field.
DeMar DeRozan and Rudy Gay combined to score 62 points for the Raptors.
WHO WILL THEY FACE? The Chicago Bulls (43-37) lost to the Heat earlier Sunday and fell a full game behind the Atlanta Hawks (44-36) in the race for the No. 5 seed.
SECOND IS THE WORST: The Nets were outscored 27-12 in the second quarter. They shot just 34.1 percent in the first half, 3-for-15 from 3-point range. Brooklyn's 32 first-half points were one shy of its season low.
NOT SO BAD IN THE THIRD: D-Will had 15 points in the third quarter and the Nets outscored the Raptors 27-19 in the period. They trailed 70-59 heading into the fourth.
INJURY REPORT: Gerald Wallace (leg) missed his second straight game. Keith Bogans started in Wallace's place and finished with six points on 2-for-7 shooting.
MR. T: Reggie Evans picked up his third technical foul in three games.
TWO: D-Will tied Jerry Stackhouse in dunks with his second of the season, on a breakaway late in the first quarter.
UP NEXT: Nets vs. Washington Wizards at 7:30 p.m. Monday.
QUESTION: Would you rest D-Will, Iso Joe and perhaps others for the final two games?