Vinsanity: Toronto's Carter throws up an unbelievable shot.
Morris Peterson's free throw with 0.8 seconds left gave the Raptors a 81-80 victory over the Nets on Saturday after squandering a 20-point second-half lead.
The Raptors improved to 1-5 away from home.
"I think everybody was making a big deal of it," said Vince
Carter, who had 21 points and nine assists. "It was a great win,
more than anything. We're excited that we're able to win with all
the controversy going around. It would be easy for this team to
Carter hasn't been part of any such rumors, and he beat Kenyon Martin on a jump ball with 3.1 seconds to play that led to
Peterson's free throw.
"The goal was to tap it to one of the guys to get a shot off,
not something that we drew up," Carter said. "Luckily, I was able
to get a hand on it and direct it that way."
Martin, who led the Nets with 26 points, thought the toss on the
jump ball wasn't good.
Peterson got inside Kerry Kittles and was fouled going to the
"As I caught it, I was going up," Peterson said. "Kerry
Kittles and Kenyon Martin were right in front of me. Both of them
kind of grabbed my arm."
Peterson made the first of his two free throws for his only
point of the half and the winning margin.
Martin got the rebound of the miss with 0.3 seconds remaining,
but the Nets failed to get off a final shot.
"We made more mistakes out there than they did," said Alonzo Mourning, who scored a season-high 15 points just two days after a
shouting match with Martin at practice.
Kidd sat out the game with a sore left knee and watched the
two-time defending Eastern Conference champions lose for the
seventh time in 12 games.
Kittles twice answered jumpers by Carter in the final minute to
tie the game at 78 and 80, the latter with 14 seconds left.
The Raptors set up a final play for Carter, and he drove the
right side of the lane against Martin. The Nets' power forward
reached in and got a hand on the ball but he also got a lot more.
Referee David Jones called a jump ball, and Carter was lucky he
didn't pick up a technical foul for the way he reacted. Kidd
covered his mouth on the bench and laughed at the call.
Carter won the ensuing tap.
Until Carter hit two straight shots in the final minute, Toronto
had missed eight straight and made 1-of-17 from the field, allowing
the Nets to get back into the game.
The Nets scored seven points during the Raptors' drought.
Martin pulled New Jersey within 76-75. Richard Jefferson had a chance to put New Jersey ahead but only went
1-for-2 from the line, tying the game at 76.
Toronto, which came into the game averaging a league-low 77.5
points, shot 61.3 percent from the field in the first half and
opened a 50-34 lead.
The Raptors twice stretched their advantage to 20 points, the
second time at 60-40 midway through the third quarter.
Game Notes: The Nets dropped to 1-2 in games Kidd missed. ... Nets
forward Rodney Rogers returned to the lineup after missing 10 games with a cut thumb. ... New Jersey is 2-5 at home. They lost only
eight home games last season. ... After seeing only three minutes
in the previous three games, Robert Pack played 26 with Kidd out.