The Toronto Raptors are suddenly deep at the point guard position and it translated into a victory on Friday night.
The Raptors hope to make it two wins in a row on Saturday as they visit an Orlando Magic squad that could have forward Hedo Turkoglu back on the floor for the first time since its season opener.
Toronto continued a three-game road trip with a stop in New Orleans on Friday and saw guard Kyle Lowry return from a seven-game absence caused by a partial tear in his right triceps. Lowry did not start, with head coach Dwane Casey opting to keep Jose Calderon in the starting lineup.
Both were on the floor towards the end of a 104-97 overtime victory, with Lowry hitting a big 3-pointer with 1:45 to play in the extra frame as the Raptors rolled to a sixth victory in seven games.
"The last couple of weeks, the team has been moving the ball really well. I just wanted to keep that going and not try to do too much," said Lowry.
"I'm always comfortable playing with another point guard on the floor. Jose's a great player. He made great decisions out there and spaced the floor."
Lowry ended with 17 points and eight assists, while DeMar DeRozan netted a game-high 30 points. Alan Anderson added 16 points, while Calderon recorded two points and six assists.
Orlando hopes for a similar boost tonight with the likely return of Turkoglu, who hasn't played since breaking his left hand in the season opener on Nov. 2. He has missed the last 28 games and his return could help ease the loss of forward Glen Davis, who is out because of a sprained left shoulder.
The Magic won four straight before Davis' injury, but have lost all four games he has missed so far. That includes last night's 105-97 defeat at the hands of the Washington Wizards.
Arron Afflalo had 26 points and J.J. Redick chipped in with 23 for the Magic, who allowed an opponent to score more than 100 points for the first time in 13 games.
"We are bad right now defensively and it's surprising because we've been good defensively all season," Redick said of his team's struggles. "I don't know what it is but I'm going to take a look at every defensive possession that we had. It's frustrating to not be able to get stops."
Jameer Nelson had 16 points, eight assists and three rebounds in the setback. Another loss tonight would equal Orlando's season-worst five-game slide from Nov. 6-13.
After sweeping the Raptors in last season's three-game series, the Magic have lost their first two meetings with the club this year, with both taking place in Toronto.