Final Dime: Raptors 101, Cavaliers 81

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Daniel Gibson notched nine points in Friday's loss to Toronto.
Ron Turenne
NBAE/Getty Images
1. The Cavaliers knew there’d be nights like these. And they just got one out of the way.

The new-look Raptors ended the third quarter on an 18-5 run, sending the new-look Cavaliers to a 101-81 loss on Friday night in Toronto.

After topping the Celtics in the home opener, Byron Scott’s young squad – playing without the services of Anderson Varejao and Mo Williams – fell behind early and never got over the hump. Antawn Jamison’s back-to-back three-pointers in the third quarter got Cleveland to within six early in the third, but Linas Kleiza’s 13-point period put the game on ice for Toronto.

“I thought they played harder than we did,” said Byron Scott. “I thought they wanted it a whole lot more than we did. That’s all it is, just effort and energy.”

Jamison finished with 13 points to lead the Cavaliers, going 4-for-9 from the floor, including 3-of-5 from beyond the arc. As a team, Cleveland shot just 38 percent from the field. The Raptors, paced by Andrea Bargnani’s 20 points, shot 48 percent as a team.

Anthony Parker was the only Cavalier starter to crack double-figures, with 10 points on 4-of-11 shooting. Parker, who spent three seasons north of the border, added four boards, three assists and a pair of steals.

Statistically, Toronto eclipsed Cleveland in rebounding (46-33) and fast-break points (26-16) . Even with the Cavaliers shooting 80 percent from the line, the Raptors missed just a single free throw (17-18) on Friday night.

Daniel Gibson came off the bench to add nine points and three assists. Leon Powe logged 17 quality minutes, going 4-for-8 from the floor for eight points despite early foul trouble. Every suited Cavalier but Joey Graham got into the scoring column.

The Wine and Gold work-in-progress gets a quick shot at redemption when they return to The Q for a Saturday night showdown with Sacramento.


2. The Wine and Gold has two undrafted rookies on their roster – Samardo Samuels and Manny Harris. On Friday, they were a combined 6-for-9 from the floor, with Samuels throwing down a strong alley-oop from Daniel Gibson and Harris canning both of threes he attempted.

3. The 15 combined points for Samuels (7) and Harris (8) were the first of their NBA career.

4. Anderson Varejao didn’t travel with the team on Friday, staying back in Cleveland to be with his father, who underwent heart surgery. Varejao may return for tomorrow’s matchup with the Kings.

5. Mo Williams made the trip to Toronto and worked out before the game, but Coach Byron Scott held him out at least one more night.

6. Toronto is familiar turf for the trio of Jamario Moon who played in Canada in 2008-09, Joey Graham (2005-09) and Anthony Parker (2007-10). The threesome combined for 588 games in a Raptors uniform.

7. Joe Tait underwent a pre-operative heart catheterization at the Cleveland Clinic and is scheduled for surgery next week, where he’ll undergo a double-bypass as well as a replacement of the aortic valve. Mike Snyder and Jim Chones have been sitting in for the Cavaliers Hall of Famer.

8. Toronto’s win snapped a three-game losing streak to the Cavaliers.

9. The Cavaliers reserves outscored the starters, 52-29.

10. The Cavaliers were a ratings hit on Wednesday, with FS Ohio hitting its highest opening night audience ever with a 10.38 rating – reaching almost 158,000 households in the Cleveland/Akron area.


Joe Gabriele is the official beat writer for the Cleveland Cavaliers on Cavs.com. You can follow Joe and send him your questions on Twitter at @CavsJoeG.