TORONTO (NWN) — Darius Garland scored a pair of free throws with 4.8 seconds remaining, and the Cleveland Cavaliers beat the Raptors 102-101 on Friday night to end Toronto’s five-game winning streak.
Garland scored 17 of his 21 points in the second half, Jarrett Allen had 16 points and 15 rebounds, and Evan Mobley scored 18 for the Cavs, who had lost their last six games in Toronto.
“They’re a really good, physical, active, defensive team that tries to get you on your heels,” Cavs coach JB Bickerstaff said of the Raptors. “In the second half, Darius kept him on his heels.”
Allen credited third-year guard Garland with keeping the Cavs in the last minute.
“Finally we could see that we were panicking,” Allen said. “They were hitting some hard shots, our defense was not where it was needed. They put us all together and said we needed to stay on our game and we got it done.
Cleveland won its third straight and improved to 4–3 on the road.
“We are getting more and more confident in every game,” Mobley said. “Chemistry is building every game.”
Bickerstaff was impressed by the maturity his team showed in overcoming a tough opponent on the road.
“Something special is growing in that locker room,” Bickerstaff said.
OG Anunoby scored 23 points but missed a jump in the last second that could have won it for the Raptors. Rookie Scotty Barnes, who returned after losing two games due to a right thumb sprain, could not convert a tip-in on Anunobi’s late lapse.
“We got the ball to OG, got a good shot,” Barnes said. “I just missed the tip.”
Cedi Osman scored 17 points for the Cavaliers and Ricky Rubio scored 11 points.
Fred VanVallet scored 18 points for the Raptors, 17 points by Gary Trent Jr., and 14 points for Barnes, who scored 15 at the start of the third quarter.
“He felt weird to lose,” said Raptors coach Nick Nurse. “I think we played very hard and I think we played very well.”
Toronto led 80–74 to make a fourth-place start. With 4:42 remaining, Allen credited a 3-pointer home to tie at 94-all.
“Basketball gods, when you’re playing the game the way our guys were playing, sometimes they take your side,” Bickerstaff said. “That shot showed favor.”
The Raptors pushed back, and Anunobi’s 3 made it 101-96 with 1:43 remaining. Allen made back-to-back baskets and made it a one-point game, and the Cavs got possession with 24.8 seconds when Barnes couldn’t catch VanVleet’s rebound on missed 3.
Anunoby fouled a driving Garland, and the Cavs guard made both to give his team the first and only lead of the game.
Toronto called a timeout, but Annobi and Barnes could not deliver the winning basket.
One after another 29-28, the Raptors widened their lead with 11-2 runs to start the second quarter and take a 57-48 advantage at halftime.
Cavaliers: Committed 19 turnovers, leaving Toronto 23 points. … Usman scored 3 for 5 from 3-point range in the first half but the rest of the Cavs scored 1 for 9. … Garland had eight assists.
Raptors: F Pascal Siakam is ahead of schedule in his return from left shoulder surgery and could return to the lineup next week, the nurse said. Siakam recently returned after a check-up with a Los Angeles-based doctor who performed her surgery.
Toronto did not shoot a free throw in the first quarter, while the Cavs scored 8 for 9 over the line in this period.
Anunobi has scored 20 or more points in six of his last eight matches.
Cavaliers: Visit New York on Sunday night.
Raptors: Host Brooklyn on Sunday.
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