Raptors drop struggling Sixers
Philadelphia, PA – Andrea Bargnani scored 24 points, DeMar DeRozan had 18 and the Toronto Raptors held the Philadelphia 76ers to just seven points in the fourth quarter Wednesday night on the way to a 99-78 win.
Jose Calderon added 12 points and 13 assists for the Raptors despite taking an elbow to the eye from Elton Brand in the second quarter and the team won its third in a row.
The Sixers, meanwhile, continued to get in their own way.
Jrue Holiday and Brand scored 20 points apiece, but Holiday had just three in the second half and the Sixers fell to 4-8 in their last 12 games, failing again to pick up a much-needed win as they chase Boston for first place in the Atlantic Division.
They were 3-for-20 in the fourth quarter, including 13 straight missed shots from the 9:15 mark until Evan Turner hit a jumper in the final minute.
The loss came one night after the Sixers played the Miami Heat tough on the road in a 99-93 loss Tuesday.
"We just have to fight through it," Sixers coach Doug Collins said. "This is who we've been. We play a decent game, then come back and have a tough one."
Sixers forward Andre Iguodala wore protective glasses in the first half after getting poked in the left eye by Mario Chalmers in Tuesday's loss to the Miami Heat.
He went 0-for-2 wearing the glasses, then 2-for-4 in the second half without them, scoring six points.
The Raptors used an 11-4 burst in the third quarter to take the lead for good. Alan Anderson sparked the run with a three-pointer and Bargnani capped it with a three-point play to make it 73-66.
They took a 79-71 lead into the fourth quarter and shot 50 percent over the last 12 minutes, leading by as many as 23 points as the Sixers set a franchise record for fewest points in the fourth quarter in the shot-clock era.
Earlier, Holiday was a perfect 8-for-8 in the first half for 17 points. He made all five of his shots in the first quarter for 10 points and the Sixers took a 31-29 lead into the second after Lou Williams hit a jumper before the buzzer.
They went ahead by as many as six before taking a 56-55 edge into halftime behind 58.1 percent shooting. The Raptors shot 52.5 percent in the half and got 13 points from Bargnani.
Calderon left the floor for a spell after Brand, pivoting with the ball in the paint, caught him in the right eye with his right elbow with 5:21 left in the second quarter.
The Sixers had won three straight in the series, including a 97-62 victory in Philly on Jan. 7. The teams will meet again in Toronto on April 11...Ed Davis had a game-high 14 rebounds in 25 minutes off the bench for the Raptors...The Sixers will remain home to play Orlando on Saturday, then head to Boston to start a three-game road trip on Sunday...The Raptors were coming off a 3-2 homestand that ended with back-to-back wins over Washington and Charlotte on Sunday and Tuesday. They are back in Toronto to play Cleveland on Friday.