There was nothing the Cleveland Cavaliers could do to stop sweet Lou Williams from revving up the hundreds of Toronto Raptors fans that had invaded Quicken Loans Arena on Saturday night to watch their NBA Eastern Conference leading Raptors totally and utterly dominate LeBron James and company.
On a three game losing streak, the Cavaliers had just returned home from an embarrassing loss to the Wizards in Washington and they came out of the gate loaded for bear. Before the Raptors knew what had hit them, Cleveland had run up a 24-6 lead.
“We knew that team was going to come out of the gate roaring and they did,” said Raptors Head Coach Dwane Casey. “We didn’t give in. We sustained our focus and our defensive disposition and just kept playing and that is what you have to do against a good team.”
It could easily be argued that after the first 7.5 minutes of the game, the Cavaliers no longer looked like a good team as Toronto outscored them 104-69 the rest of the way. This became as epic a beat down as the Raptors 124-82 demolition of the Bucks in Toronto the night before.
Leading the way off the pine was Williams with a career high 36 points, just 2 points shy of the Raptors record for bench points held by Donyell Marshall of 38 (March 13, 2005 vs 76ers). Kyle Lowry had what has become the expected strong performance as he contributed 23 points and 8 assists, but the other big surprise from the Raptors in this game came from DeMar DeRozan.
“I am surprised that 36 is his career high because he’s a long time scorer. That’s what he has done his whole career,” Casey said. “DeMar DeRozan’s defense was fantastic.”
With Terrence Ross getting torched by James and no James Johnson available to defend the King, Casey turned to his next option in DeRozan and surprisingly, DeRozan stoned him. James was held to just 4 second half points by DeRozan and only scored 15 points in the game. It was a dejected looking James watching from the bench for the final 6.3 minutes as the Raptors had built an 18 point lead that the Cavaliers couldn’t do anything about.
DeRozan was stymied himself in the first half shooting 1-8 from the field, but after the break he scored 17 points to finish with 20 on 7-18 shooting.
— Carol Tshabalala (@SimplyCarol8) November 23, 2014
Much of the postgame focus of this 110-93 shellacking will probably be on the disappointing Cavaliers, but the 11-2 Raptors were full measure for the win. Chants of ‘Let’s go Raptors’ were heard from before the start of the game and towards the end, even the extra loud piped in music couldn’t drown out the Raptors fans as the locals rushed towards the exits.
Raptors Republic: Quick Reaction: Raptors 110, Cavaliers 93 by Garrett Hinchey:
How great was it having “let’s go Raptors” chants drowning out the crowd in Cleveland in the fourth quarter?
As of Saturday night, the 11-2 Toronto Raptors are tied with the Memphis Grizzlies for the best record in the NBA.
10-2 Toronto Raptors Slowly Gaining Respect
We-The-North also means we-the-not-on-ESPN, so it’s been taking a while for the boys in the south to start noticing just how hot the Toronto Raptors have started out this season. In the NBA, superstar players get most of the respect and teams that win without the marquee name players are only grudgingly acknowledged.