PHILADELPHIA — As impressive as the Toronto Raptors’ DeMar DeRozan and Kyle Lowry were in Friday night’s 104-95 victory over the Philadelphia 76ers, they weren’t all that impressed with themselves.
“Melo has 62,” DeRozan said with a laugh, referring to New York Knicks star Carmelo Anthony, who finished with 62 points in a victory over the Charlotte Bobcats. “I really didn’t do too much.”
DeRozan, a guard-forward, scored 34 points and Lowry, a guard, generated 18 points, 13 assists and 10 rebounds for the Atlantic Division-leading Raptors (22-20), who won their second straight and ended a four-game road losing streak.
Like DeRozan, Lowry was tracking Anthony’s effort on his cell phone after the game — and after Lowry, a Philadelphia native and Villanova graduate, fashioned his first triple-double of the season and the fourth of his career. It came before “50-something” friends and family members.
“It’s always special to play here,” he said. “Even if I play terrible and we win the game, and I give my family something to cheer for, I’m happy.”
The triple-double made it more so.
“As long as it’s with a win, it’s a great feat,” he said. “As long as it’s with a win, I’m happy to have it.”
Former Sixers guard-forward John Salmons added 12 points off the bench for Toronto, which improved to 16-8 since trading guard-forward Rudy Gay to Sacramento on Dec. 9.
Guard Michael Carter-Williams had 20 points to lead Philadelphia (14-29), which lost for the fourth time in five games. Forward Thaddeus Young added 16 points and guard-forward Hollis Thompson had 15. Center Spencer Hawes contributed 14 points and 12 rebounds.
DeRozan, who scored a career-high 40 points in Wednesday night’s victory over Dallas, notched 16 in the fourth quarter when the Raptors outscored the Sixers 24-17. Four of his points came in a 9-0 run that allowed Toronto to extend an 87-83 lead to 96-83 with 4:47 remaining.
The Sixers, who made 6 of 20 shots from the field in the fourth quarter, drew no closer than six thereafter.
“At the end of the day, they’re a good team,” Young said. “I don’t look past them or anything like that. There used to be a point where the Toronto Raptors walk in and you’re like, ‘OK, this can be an easy one.’ But we know they have a lot of key guys on that team who can do a lot of different things.”
And their chemistry appears to have improved since the Gay trade.
“They make the trade and it ends up a little bit addition by subtraction in many ways,” Sixers coach Brett Brown said. “They get a little bit more of an identity and a defensive purpose.”
DeRozan, who missed nine straight shots from the floor at one point, finished 10 of 22. He was also 13 of 16 from the foul line and claimed nine rebounds.
“You miss all the shots you don’t take — that’s how I look at it,” he said. “My team needs me to shoot, especially when the game gets close, whenever we need a bucket, so I can’t have that mindset, ‘I missed nine in a row,’ whatever it may be. I’ve just got to keep being aggressive.”
NOTES: The Sixers have lost eight of their last 10 at home. … Earlier in the day, the Sixers signed C Dewayne Dedmon to a second 10-day contract. The 7-foot rookie is, at age 23, “incredibly raw,” coach Brett Brown said before tipoff, having only begun playing basketball five years ago. But like fellow G-F Hollis Thompson, Dedmon is “not polluted,” Brown said, and doesn’t have a lot of bad habits that need to be corrected. “I’ve seen a lot of excellent things from Dewayne,” Brown said. “I think that he’s got a future in the NBA.” … Raptors F Tyler Hansbrough (left ankle sprain) missed his 12th straight game. … Sixers G Tony Wroten (right ankle sprain) sat out his third straight.
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