The Raptors had two great games against the Bulls at season's end.
The Toronto Raptors finished their season in the 10th spot in the Eastern Conference, with 34 wins and 48 losses. They had a home record of 21-20 and an away record of 17-24.
Though the Raptors didn’t make the playoffs, they ended the season strong with a five-game winning streak. Their roster also boasts many players who have the potential to be stars come fall.
Let’s take a moment to reflect and look back at the five most memorable games of the Toronto Raptors' 2012-13 season.
DeRozan led the team with 21 points.
At the end of December, the Raptors defeated the Magic in Orlando. Toronto had six players scoring double figures, including DeMar DeRozan with 21 points, Ed Davis with 18 and Jose Calderon with 15.
The Raptors forced the Magic to take their fifth straight loss in a row, despite Andrew Nicholson’s strong 22-point game. Toronto scored .581 percent of their shots from the field in the first half and only registered eight turnovers in the whole game.
According to ESPN.com, DeMar DeRozan said after the win, “We’ve had a lot of bad luck early in the season with injuries and close games so it’s desperation time every time we step on the court.” He continued, “When we make the game fun, everybody’s confidence gets high and it feels like we can’t be stopped.”
The Raptors came close to defeating the Heat on January 23.
Though the Heat eventually defeated the Raptors in overtime in Miami on January 23, Toronto came close to holding off the defending NBA champions. LeBron had to help his team rally from a 15-point deficit to tie the Raptors at the end of the fourth quarter.
Seven of the Raptors players scored in double figures, including Alan Anderson with 20, Jose Calderon with 17, Terrence Ross with 16 and Amir Johnson with 15. What’s more, the Raptors went on an impressive 19-9 run in the second quarter to lead the Heat 54-39.
As ESPN.com reported, Coach Dwane Casey said of the game, “I cannot fault our guys’ effort.” He added, “They fought, they scrapped, they played with their hearts and they took one of the best teams in the NBA to the limit. That’s what I said before the game. This game is about respect. This game’s about going out there and not letting teams think they’re going to come out and get their numbers against you. And our guys fought.”
Rudy Gay led the team to a victory over the Clippers in his first game with Toronto.
Forward Rudy Gay made his debut with the Raptors with finesse as he led the team with 20 points to a 98-73 victory over the Clippers in Toronto. Also notable in scoring were Amir Johnson and DeMar DeRozan, who both had 19 points. Moreover, Johnson grabbed 16 rebounds.
The defeat marked the Clippers’ fourth straight loss. According to ESPN.com, Gay noted after the game, “It felt great to be accepted like I [was] today…It just makes you want to play hard.”
Even Los Angeles’s Blake Griffin sung Gay’s praises: “I love Rudy’s game,” he said. “He’s going to be great for the Raptors.”
The Raptors held off the Pacers on February 8.
Gay continued to demonstrate his ability to lift the Raptors to victory in Indianapolis on February 8. He contributed 23 points for the Raptors, 17 of which were scored in the fourth quarter and in overtime. Gay even had the game-winning shot, a 17-foot jumper with 1.7 seconds left on the clock in overtime.
This game marked the fourth in a row during which Gay scored at least 20 points for the Raptors since leaving Memphis for his new team. DeMar DeRozan also shined against Indiana, grabbing 22 points. Amir Johnson was not too far behind with 14 points and 14 rebounds.
Gay commented after the game, “The Raptors have been playing great since I’ve been here, and we’ve been playing well with each other. You know, I just want to be in at the end of games where I can give the team a chance to win,” reported ESPN.com.
The win against Chicago marked the beginning to the Raptors' winning streak at the end of the season.
The Raptors began their five-game winning streak at the end of the 2012-13 season with a 101-98 win over the Chicago Bulls in Chicago. Even though rookie big man Jonas Valanciunas endured a neck injury toward the end of the game, the game was still a solid win for Toronto.
Toronto had a lead of 15 points during the first half of the game, but let Chicago catch up at the end of the half. The Raptors extended the lead to 16 during the third quarter, but again the Bulls caught up to within two points toward the end of the game.
Valanciunas collided with Rudy Gay during the jump ball at the end of the game and had to spend the night in a Chicago hospital because of the injury. According to ESPN.com, Gay said of the collision, “He’s an aggressive player, but he just ended up in the wrong spot. We’re hoping that he’s OK. But we all know that anytime anything can happen. We all know that. Look at the Final Four, some of the crazy injuries that happened in that. This is a physical game.”
DeMar DeRozan lead the team with 20 points, and Gay was right behind him with 19.