Raptors hand Thunder first home loss of season - NBC Sports

Raptors hand Thunder first home loss of season
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OKLAHOMA CITY, OK - DECEMBER 22: DeMar DeRozan #10 of the Toronto Raptors drives to the basket against the Oklahoma City Thunder on December 22, 2013 at the Chesapeake Energy Arena in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. (Photo by Layne Murdoch/NBAE via Getty Images)
December 22, 2013, 10:15 pm

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) Kyle Lowry scored 22 points, making a pair of clinching free throws with 9.8 seconds left, and the Toronto Raptors handed the Oklahoma City Thunder their first home loss with a 104-98 victory on Sunday night.

The Raptors outscored Oklahoma City 6-0 in the final 1:25, all from the free throw line, and ended the Thunder's nine-game winning streak. Oklahoma City had been 13-0 at home, the NBA's longest unbeaten stretch to open a season since the Cleveland Cavaliers won their first 23 home games during the 2007-08 season.

Amir Johnson had 17 points and 13 assists for Toronto, which won its fourth straight road game, its longest such streak since March-April 2002. Oklahoma City lost for the first time since Dec. 4 at Portland.

Russell Westbrook scored 27 points and Kevin Durant added 24 for Oklahoma City, which missed its final four shots.

Oklahoma City surged ahead with a 24-4 run during the third quarter that gave the Thunder an 82-71 lead. The Thunder led 93-88 after a jumper by Westbrook with 6:03 left, but Toronto regained the lead with a 10-0 run. Jonas Valanciunas put the Raptors up 95-93 with a hook shot with 4:03 left and Lowry followed with a 3-pointer.

Two free throws by Perry Jones III and a 3-pointer by Durant tied the game, but John Salmons hit two free throws with 1:25 left to put Toronto up 100-98. The Thunder's next two possessions ended in a missed 3-point attempt by Reggie Jackson and a block by Valanciunas on a layup attempt by Westbrook, with Toronto winning the scramble for the loose ball.

Johnson hit two free throws with 14.5 seconds left to extend Toronto's lead to 102-98. Durant missed a 3-point attempt and Lowry rebounded before hitting the Raptors' final two free throws.

Oklahoma City, which entered the game second in the NBA in free throw shooting at 81.8 percent, went 35 of 36 (97.2 percent).

Toronto went 7 of 14 from 3-point range and scored on its final nine possessions of the first half, turning a five-point deficit into a 62-56 halftime lead. The 62 points were the second-most surrendered in the first half this season by Oklahoma City.

Oklahoma City clamped down on defense in the third quarter, allowing the Raptors only 13 points, matching their season low for a quarter. Toronto led 67-58 after a basket by Valanciunas at the 9:57 mark before Oklahoma City reeled off 10 straight points.

Baskets by Valanciunas and Patrick Patterson put the Raptors back ahead 71-68, but Durant and Westbrook each hit a 3-pointer as the Thunder scored 14 in a row.

DeMar DeRozan added 17 points for Toronto, while Salmons had 14 and Valanciunas had 13.

The Thunder, coming off a win at San Antonio on Saturday night, shot 37 percent from the field (28 of 76) and had just two double-figure scorers. Durant finished 5 of 16 from the field and committed six of the Thunder's 19 turnovers.

Notes: Durant was called for a technical foul, his third of the season, while on the bench in the second quarter. Durant protested after a scramble for a loose ball between Oklahoma City's Nick Collison and Toronto's Valanciunas. Ironically, Valanciunas was called for a personal foul on the play that Durant protested ... The Thunder recorded their 102nd straight regular-season sellout at Chesapeake Energy Arena. Including playoff games, Oklahoma City's sellout streak is 128 games ... Thunder C Steven Adams picked up three fouls during a two-minute stint in the first quarter.

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