Raptors fend off Celtics rally as Toronto stretches win streak to six
DeMar DeRozan scored at will against the Celtics, finishing with a game-high 34. AP

TORONTO — DeMar DeRozan scored 34 points and Jonas Valanciunas had his eighth double-double with 19 points and 12 rebounds as the Toronto Raptors won their season-high sixth straight game, 115-109 over the Boston Celtics on Wednesday night (Thursday, Manila time).

Luis Scola chipped in with 18 points and Kyle Lowry added 14 for the Raptors.

Boston guard Isaiah Thomas had his fifth double-double of the season with 21 points and 10 assists. Avery Bradley added another 19 points for the Celtics.

Back-to-back baskets from Thomas and another from Bradley knotted the scores at 105 with just 3:20 to play, but 3-pointers on consecutive possessions from Lowry and Terrence Ross re-established a four-point Toronto advantage with 2:16 remaining.

The Raptors had previously beaten the Celtics 113-103 in Boston in their only other meeting so far this season.

The Raptors jumped to an early lead behind the scoring of Scola and DeRozan, as the home team shot 65.2 percent from the floor to jump into a 35-27 lead.

Boston responded in the second quarter, taking advantage of some less-than-stellar Toronto defense to shoot 14 of 20 from the floor, including 5 of 7 from beyond the three-point line. They led 62-56 at halftime.

But with all the starters back on the floor to begin the third, Toronto resumed its red-hot shooting. DeRozan scored 18 in the quarter to send the Raptors into the final 12 minutes with a 96-90 lead.


Celtics: After six seasons as a Raptor, Amir Johnson said his first appearance back in Toronto, "felt a little bit weird, but it felt good at the same time." Johnson was given a huge cheer during pre-game introductions and a standing ovation following a first-quarter video tribute. ... Rookie Jordan Mickey missed his second consecutive game (left ankle).

Raptors: With eight assists on the night, Kyle Lowry passed Damon Stoudamire (1,761) for third place on Toronto's all-time assists list. Jose Calderon (3,770) and Alvin Williams (1,791) rank first and second, respectively, on that list. ... On the subject of the all-star candidacies of Lowry and DeRozan, currently sitting third and sixth respectively in the voting for Eastern Conference guards, Boston coach Brad Stevens had encouraging words. "They're going to be All-Stars, there's no doubt about it," he said of the pair's quest to represent the Raptors on their home court at next month's game.


Celtics: Host Chicago on Friday night.

Raptors: Host Miami on Friday night.

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