Clippers end Raptors’ streak with 96-91 victory
“We were playing in mud. Psychologically, we were a step behind,” Toronto coach Dwane Casey said. “After we lost that lead, we couldn’t get our traction back.”
The Raptors were up 81-74 early in the fourth on seven straight points, including consecutive baskets by Valanciunas.
Teodosic and Austin Rivers hit 3-pointers and Sam Dekker made a pair of free throws to pull the Clippers into an 82-all tie. They tied it again at 84-all on Dekker’s baseline shovel pass to Jordan, who dunked.
“We kept a high-scoring team under 100 points. That’s pretty good, man,” Austin Rivers said. “This is the biggest win for us. We kept playing and fighting.”
The Lightning and Blues are tied atop the league standings with 44 points and both come into the game riding four-game winning streaks.
Tampa Bay coach Jon Cooper’s team won those four games at home, and he knows the Lightning have to find a way to transfer their home success to the road, where they lost three of four games on their last trip.
Tuesday night’s game begins another four-game trip.
“We’ve done what we had to at home,” Cooper told the Tampa Bay Times. “Now we have to do it on the road, and it’s much tougher with all the travel we have to do, especially where we are here. So, we have to learn from what we did on the road before, what we have to do to prepare, but this is a good way to jump-start that.”