WASHINGTON — Point guard Kyle Lowry keyed a decisive third quarter and finished with 24 points and 10 assists as the Toronto Raptors returned from the All-Star break with a 103-93 win over the Washington Wizards on Tuesday night.
Guards DeMar DeRozen and Greivis Vasquez each scored 14 points for the Raptors (29-24), who won three straight games overall and improved to 3-0 vs. Washington this season. Toronto shot 56.8 percent from the field, led by 20 points in the second half and had six players score in double figures in the first game after the All-Star break for both teams.
All-Star guard John Wall scored 22 points for the Wizards (25-28), who lost three straight and five of six. Center Marcin Gortat had 18 points and 11 rebounds and forward Nene added 17.
Washington played the final 4:39 without Randy Wittman as the coach was ejected after picking up two technical fouls. The ejection ignited the Wizards, who trailed 99-82 after DeRozen made one of two technical foul shots. Washington scored 11 straight points and trailed 99-93 with 1:06 remaining, but would get no closer.
Lowry hit four straight free throws after the Wizards cut the lead to six. Toronto’s final field goal in the fourth quarter came with 7:36 remaining.
Leading 57-55 early in the third quarter, the Raptors pulled away with a 21-6 run keyed by Lowry. Passed over for the Eastern Conference All-Star team, the energetic point guard made all six of his field goal attempts for 12 points in that stretch.
His 3-pointer capped the run and gave the Raptors a 78-61 lead with 2:41 remaining in the third before the crowd of 15,624.
Wall won the Slam Dunk contest during All-Star weekend and played in the main game Sunday along with DeRozen. Wizards guard Bradley Beal lost in the finals of the 3-point contest and Raptors forward Terrence Ross joined Wall in the dunk event.
Wall had plenty of energy and accuracy in the first half. He made nine of 12 field goal attempts for 19 points in the first half, yet the Wizards trailed 55-49 at halftime. Center Jonas Valanciunas scored all 10 of his points in the first half and Toronto shot 57 percent from the field.
Beal struggled, finishing with nine points on 2 of 10 shooting while Ross scored only had two points.
NOTES: Both teams shot better than 56 percent from the field in the first half. … Raptors F Amir Johnson (ankle) returned to the lineup and came off the bench after missing the final two games before the All-Star break. … Wizards F Al Harrington participated in a full practice Sunday, his first since undergoing a knee procedure on Dec. 19. Coach Randy Wittman said the veteran is “getting closer” but did not offer a return date. …The Raptors, 9-2 at home since Jan. 1, host the series finale on Feb. 27. … Toronto returns home to face the Chicago Bulls on Wednesday, the same day Washington plays the Hawks in Atlanta.
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