Rudy Gay and Carmelo Anthony matched each other basket for basket in what first looked to be a high scoring game, tied 32-32 after the 1st quarter. Ironically, both Rudy & Carmelo ended the game with 32 points each (including 17 for Rudy in the 3rd quarter alone!), but in the dying moments the Raptors capitalized on what appeared to be mental lapse by the Knickerbockers. With the score 100-98 and 3.4 seconds left, the Knicks opted not to foul intentionally, which allowed the Raptors to push the ball up the floor and run out the clock to secure the victory.
The Toronto Raptors are now 7-3 since acquiring Rudy Gay in the trade with the Memphis Grizzlies & Detroit Pistons. Currently, the Raptors are 4.5 games out of 8th place in the Eastern Conference, trailng the Philadelphia 76ers, and the Milwaukee Bucks, who are holding on to the 8th spot. It appears that a .500 record or very close to it, will be what is required to lock down that coveted 8th seed. With 26 games remaining the Raptors will need to go 18-8 in that stretch to reach .500. That will require the Raptors to win 69% of their remaining games to reach that mark.
Raptors' Head Coach Dwane Casey spoke to the media after the game:
Photo credit: Ron Turanne – NBAE/Getty Images