Forward Rudy Gay scored 32 points to lead the Toronto Raptors to a surprising 100-98 victory over the New York Knicks, who stumbled to their season-worst fourth consecutive defeat.
The Raptors had a nine-point advantage after three quarters of Friday night's game at the Air Canada Centre in Toronto, but the Knicks erased that lead halfway through the fourth quarter and the game was up for grabs down the stretch.
In the closing seconds, the Knicks settled for long-range jumpers instead of attacking the hoop and paid for that low-percentage strategy.
Guards DeMar DeRozan and Kyle Lowry added 18 points and 15 points, respectively, and center Jonas Valanciunas grabbed 10 rebounds for the Raptors, which won for the seventh time in their last 10 games to improve their record to 23-33.
Carmelo Anthony led the Knicks with 32 points, while reserve swingman J.R. Smith added 19 and power forward Amare Stoudemire came off the bench to score 14.
With the loss, New York fell to 32-20 and currently stands in third place in the Eastern Conference behind the Miami Heat and the Indiana Pacers.
In other action on a busy Friday night in the NBA, the Pacers trounced the Detroit Pistons 114-82, the Chicago Bulls routed the Charlotte Bobcats 105-75, the Washington Wizards edged the Denver Nuggets 119-113, the Atlanta Hawks topped the Sacramento Kings 122-108, and the Houston Rockets defeated the Brooklyn Nets 106-96.
The Dallas Mavericks edged the New Orleans Hornets 104-100, the Oklahoma City Thunder powered past the Minnesota Timberwolves 127-111, the Memphis Grizzlies defeated the Orlando Magic 88-82, and the Boston Celtics cruised to a 113-88 win over the Phoenix Suns.
The Golden State Warriors squeaked past the San Antonio Spurs 107-101 in overtime, while the Los Angeles Lakers topped the Portland Trail Blazers 111-107. EFE