Celtics lose season debut in Toronto
TORONTO — Rudy Gay scored 19 points as the Toronto Raptors defeated the Boston Celtics, 93-87, on Wednesday in the NBA season opener for both teams at Air Canada Centre.
DeMar DeRozan and Amir Johnson, who was playing his 300th game for the Raptors, each chipped in with 13 points for Toronto. Kyle Lowry had 11 points and eight assists while Jonas Valanciunas had 11 rebounds with eight points.
Jeff Green led the Celtics with 25 points while Brandon Bass added 17 and Vitor Faverani 13. Kris Humphries had nine rebounds and eight points for Boston.
The Celtics overcame a 16-point disadvantage during the third quarter to take a 74-71 lead in the first minute of the fourth quarter on Green's three-pointer.
But the Raptors came back to lead 82-78 when Johnson hit a 27-foot three point shot with 6:20 to play. After Avery Bradley missed a shot for Boston, Gay hit a 17-foot jumper with 4:26 to play and it was 84-78 for the Raptors. Gay hit another jumper to bump the lead to eight, and DeRozan came back with a bucket to give the Raptors a 10-point lead with 2:32 left in regulation.
The Celtics led 26-21 after the first quarter, shooting 65 percent from the field while holding the Raptors to 39 percent.
The Raptors tied it early in the second quarter at 26 on a 24-foot three-point shot by Steve Novak. Landry Fields gave the Raptors a 30-28 lead on a hook shot with 8:14 left in the half. The Raptors led 49-37 at the half when Terrence Ross hit a three-pointer from the corner as time expired.
Gay led the Raptors with eight points in the first half while Faverani led the Celtics with 13 points, nine in the first quarter.
The Raptors bumped their lead to 16 points four minutes into the third quarter on a dunk by Valanciunas.
The Celtics trimmed their deficit to 65-58 with 3:12 to play in the third after Humphries made one of two free throws. Green hit a 3-pointer to cut Toronto's lead to three with 48 seconds to go, and Bass tied the game at 71 for the Celtics at the end of the third quarter on a putback slam dunk.
Notes: Toronto G Kyle Lowry is playing with an injured tendon in his left ring finger. He was hurt Oct. 23 in the third quarter of a preseason game against the Memphis Grizzlies. Lowry will play and practice with a splint for about six weeks with no loss of game time expected. ... The Celtics started Faverani with F Jared Sullinger not making the trip with team because of a domestic-violence charge that was dismissed Monday. ... The Celtics will open their home schedule with a game against the Milwaukee Bucks on Friday. ... The Raptors will go on the road for two games in a row, playing the Atlanta Hawks on Friday and visiting the Milwaukee Bucks on Saturday before returning home to play the NBA champion Miami Heat on Tuesday.Cavaliers 98, Nets 94: Tristan Thompson scored 18 points and grabbed nine rebounds and Kyrie Irving collected 15 points, seven rebounds and nine assists as host Cleveland held on for a season-opening victory.