Lowry’s triple-double leads Raptors past Pacers, 117-98
INDIANAPOLIS (AP) – Kyle Lowry had 20 points, 11 rebounds and 10 assists, Lou Williams scored 24 points, and the Toronto Raptors pulled away for a 117-98 victory over the Indiana Pacers on Monday night.
The Raptors (40-27) set a franchise record by earning their 40th win in just 67 games. They had never achieved that feat in fewer than 70.
Indiana (30-36) lost its second straight despite getting 23 points from George Hill and 20 from Rodney Stuckey.
The Raptors started fast and never trailed, pulling off their first season sweep of the Pacers since 2000-01.
Toronto took control with a 14-2 run that started late in the first quarter and ended midway through the second with a 37-24 lead.
Indiana got within 58-56 early in the third, but the Raptors made four 3-pointers during an ensuing 16-5 spurt and the Pacers couldn’t get closer than seven the rest of the way.
The Raptors’ shooters simply shredded one of the league’s top defenses.
DeMar DeRozan had 22 points, while Jonas Valanciunas wound up with 14 points and 12 rebounds. Amir Johnson scored 11 points.
Toronto shot 47.6 percent from the field and finished 12 of 23 on 3s – despite playing on the second night of a back-to-back.
And with the Pacers going 2 of 19 on 3s, they never had a chance.
Toronto took a seven-point lead in the opening minutes, then used the run bridging the first two quarters to run away.
Raptors: The Raptors’ recent struggles were largely the result of poor defense, but they were solid Monday. Indiana shot just 43.2 percent and they outrebounded the Pacers 58-46.
Pacers: Hill scored 17 in the first half with a dribbling display that would have made the Globetrotters proud. But in the in the second half, Hill took only four shots.
Raptors: Host Minnesota on Wednesday.
Pacers: Visit Chicago on Wednesday.