Anthony, Knicks hand Raptors first home loss, 111-109
TORONTO (AP) While the New York Knicks credited Carmelo Anthony's leadership, the Toronto Raptors had questions about his foot - specifically whether it was out of bounds on a pivotal play in the game.
The referees instead called Raptors point guard Kyle Lowry for a foul on Lance Thomas, the recipient of Anthony's subsequent pass with the Knicks leading by one. Thomas converted both free throws with 17.2 seconds remaining and the Knicks held on to hand the Raptors their first home loss of the season, 111-109 on Tuesday night.
''When we came in we reviewed the play,'' crew chief Ed Malloy said afterward. ''We did see Anthony step out of bounds and should have awarded the ball to Toronto.''
Anthony scored 25 points to help the Knicks to their third road win in four attempts this season - after registering just seven such wins over the entirety of last season - and was in no mood to revisit the past.
''I don't want to see it, I'm getting out of here,'' he said. ''Ain't no need for me to look back and watch it, it's over with. I don't even know if I did it. Probably, but we're getting out of here with the win.''
While Raptors coach Dwane Casey said he saw the Knicks star step out of bounds with his own eyes, Toronto forward DeMar DeRozan, who scored a season-high 29 points in the loss, said the Raptors should still have pulled out the victory.
''All night there were a lot of things we were definitely frustrated about,'' he said. ''We still had a chance to pull it out. I missed a free throw, and even though I missed a free throw we got the ball back and missed a layup. Just a combination of things.''
Chief among them would have been Toronto's 23.5 percent shooting from beyond the 3-point arc, compared to New York's 47.8 percent conversion rate from the same distance, which accounted for 33 points. Thomas went 3 for 3 from 3-point range as part of the 17 points he added off the bench.
''He's another guy who adds value to what we are and he helped us win this game tonight,'' coach Derek Fisher said of the backup forward, while acknowledging that his team wasn't great on the night.
''We were fortunate to get out with the win giving up 60 points in the paint and fouling as much as we did; those are areas that we're really trying to improve in a major way.''
The Knicks led by 13 points less than a minute into the third quarter. The Raptors wiped that out by the end of the period before Cleanthony Early banked in a 30-footer at the buzzer to send the teams to the fourth tied at 85.
With Toronto trailing by five late in the first quarter, Lowry floated a beautiful alley-oop pass toward the hoop that DeRozan slammed in, bringing the fans to their feet in the process.
New York native Adam Pally, best known for playing Max Blum in the ABC comedy series ''Happy Endings,'' took in the game from courtside.
The Raptors had a night to forget defensively, with the 60 points they gave up in the first half and the 111 in the game both season worsts.
Knicks: G Arron Afflalo (left hamstring) remained out, though is expected to make his season debut soon.
Raptors: DeRozan reached the 15-point mark for the eighth straight game to start the season, the first Raptor since Chris Bosh in 2009-10 to accomplish the feat. ... Toronto is 2-1 at home and will not play consecutive home games until Dec. 3-5, the latest in a season that the team has had to wait to play back-to-back games in front of its own fans. ... F DeMarre Carroll (right heel) missed his second straight game and F Terrence Ross (left thumb) was also unavailable.
Knicks: Visit Charlotte on Wednesday.
Raptors: Visit Philadelphia on Wednesday.