Irving lifts Cavaliers past Raptors 99-98
- Article by: IAN HARRISON
- Associated Press
- January 26, 2013 - 8:50 PM
TORONTO - Kyrie Irving made a 3-pointer with 0.7 seconds left to give the Cleveland Cavaliers a 99-98 victory over the Toronto Raptors on Saturday night.
Headed to his first All-Star game, Irving added to his credentials by calmly draining a pull-up jumper from the top of the arc to send the Cavaliers to their third straight win.
Irving finished with 32 points and Marreese Speights had 17 for the Cavs. Tristan Thompson scored 14 and Wayne Ellington had 12.
Toronto had five players score in double figures. Amir Johnson had 18 points and 12 rebounds, Alan Anderson scored 17 and Ed Davis finished with 16.
The Raptors had won seven of their previous nine meetings with the Cavaliers.
Anderson's layup to begin the fourth gave the Raptors an 11-point cushion but Ellington hit two 3-pointers as Cleveland answered with a 12-2 run, cutting it to 79-78 with 9:21 left.
The Cavaliers took their first lead since the first quarter on a layup by Thompson, but Terrence Ross restored Toronto's lead with a 3 less than a minute later.
Ellington's third 3-pointer of the fourth put the Cavaliers in front again, making it 88-87 with 4:44 left. Irving followed with a pair of free throws and then a driving layup for Cleveland's biggest lead of the game, but another 3 by Ross cut it to 92-90 with 3:19 remaining.
Toronto tied it with 2:12 left when Jose Calderon stole the ball from Irving and fed a streaking Ross for a layup. The Raptors reclaimed the lead on a driving dunk by Johnson with 1:16 to play.
Irving tied it again on a driving layup but Calderon promptly answered with a layup at the other end, putting the Raptors up 98-96 with 12 seconds to go.
The Cavaliers then called timeout and Irving made the decisive 3 while topping 30 points for the third straight game.
DeMar DeRozan, whose buzzer-beating jump shot gave Toronto a 97-95 victory at Orlando on Thursday, got off to a strong start, making six of his first seven field-goal attempts and scoring 12 points to help the Raptors to a 25-19 lead after one. But DeRozan had just three points the rest of the way.
Irving scored eight points in the second and Speights added seven as Cleveland closed the gap, but an eight-point effort by Davis gave Toronto a 50-46 lead at the half.
NOTES: Cleveland's Daniel Gibson left at half with a sore right big toe and did not return. ... Toronto's Landry Fields started despite suffering from flulike symptoms. ... Cleveland F Luke Walton did not play because of soreness in his left foot and ankle. ... The Raptors wore camouflage uniforms to mark Canadian Forces Appreciation Night. More than 500 Canadian Forces members and their families attended the game.
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