TORONTO — Point guard Kyle Lowry scored 36 points, and the Toronto Raptors held on to defeat the Brooklyn Nets 115-113 Wednesday to take a 3-2 lead in their first-round Eastern Conference playoff series.
The Raptors led by as many as 26 points in the third quarter, but the Nets came back to tie the game.
Toronto led by one point before Raptors guard DeMar DeRozan made two free throws with 6.5 seconds to play. Brooklyn center/forward Andray Blatche made one of two free throws with 4.9 seconds left, and the Raptors were able to hold on after the Nets were called for a backcourt violation.
The Raptors can clinch the best-of-seven series with a win at Brooklyn on Friday night.
Raptors guard DeMar DeRozan added 23 points, center Jonas Valanciunas had 16, guard Greivis Vasquez added 15 and forward Amir Johnson scored 11 before fouling out.
Nets forward Joe Johnson scored 18 of his 30 points in the third quarter. Forward Mirza Teletovic added 17, guard Deron Williams and forward/guard Alan Anderson had 13 each, and forward Paul Pierce scored 10 for the Nets. Williams dished out a game-high nine assists.
The Raptors led by 22 entering the fourth quarter, but the Nets trimmed it to eight when Williams made two free throws with 6:03 to play. Anderson sliced the deficit to six when he capped a 22-6 surge.
DeRozan made two free throws for an eight-point Raptors lead. The Nets came back again, and Johnson hit a 3-pointer to tie the game at 101 with 3:19 to play.
Lowry made two free throws to put Toronto up by two. After a Brooklyn turnover, Vasquez made a 3-pointer, and the Raptors led by five points.
Blatche made two free throws, and Teletovic tied it with a 3-point shot.
Lowry sank a 3-pointer to restore Toronto’s lead.
Blatche cut the margin to one before Lowry made a driving hook shot with 27 seconds left gave Toronto a three-point lead.
After Johnson missed a jump shot, DeRozan hit two free throws to increase Toronto’s lead to five. Anderson hit a 3-pointer with 9.7 seconds to go and made the free throw to cut the lead to one as Johnson fouled out.
NOTES: Toronto lost 52 man-games to injuries during the regular season, the lowest total in the NBA. …The Raptors held the Nets scoreless in the final 4:58 of the fourth quarter in their 87-79 win Sunday in Game 4. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, it was the first time in 1,253 NBA playoff games that a team held the opposition scoreless that long to end a game. … Raptors forward Landry Fields (back) was available for Game 5 after missing Game 4. He did not play Wednesday, however. … Nets G/F Alan Anderson (groin) did not practice Tuesday, but he played Wednesday. … Game 6 will be played in Brooklyn on Friday night. Game 7, if necessary, would be played Sunday in Toronto.
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