EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J., Feb. 2 (Ticker) -- Jason Kidd
and the New Jersey Nets again made the most of a second chance.
Kidd buried a 3-pointer with 83 seconds left to highlight his 43rd career triple-double as the Nets extended their home winning streak to seven games with a 98-91 victory over the Toronto Raptors.
The Nets made amends for an 89-77 loss to Toronto at the Air Canada Centre on January 18, marking the fifth time this season they have defeated an opponent after losing the series opener. Detroit, Washington, Orlando and Milwaukee all fell to New Jersey after winning the first meeting.
Kenyon Martin elevates for a lefty finger-roll.
Noren Trotman/NBAE/Getty Images
"I thought that on both ends of the court, we did what we were supposed to do," Nets coach Byron Scott said. "We didn't have the type of lulls that we had the last game against Milwaukee (on Thursday). This was a solid basketball game."
Kidd continued the trend with 31 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists for his second straight triple-double and league-leading fifth of the season. He moved ahead of Fat Lever into sole possession of fifth place on the all-time list.
"I just came out aggressive this afternoon. I just took what the defense gave me and tried to be aggressive on defense," Kidd said. "That was the start of our game. Our defense and our offense helped each other."
The All-Star guard scored New Jersey's final nine points and put the Nets ahead at 94-91 with a jumper from the right side. He closed the scoring with four free throws down the stretch.
scored 26 points for the Raptors but missed a 3-point attempt with 21 seconds left that would have tied it.
"The Nets did what they had to do today and that was being the Nets," Carter said. "What I mean by that is they run the floor, they get out on the wings and make things happen. That's what they did. They were getting baskets, they were getting calls and they made big shots."
Kidd sank two free throws after Carter's miss for a 96-91 lead, and Toronto saw its last realistic chance end when Dell Curry
missed a 3-pointer with 13.9 seconds left.
bounced back from a miserable first half to score 16 points for New Jersey. He picked up three fouls in a 12-second span of the first quarter, including a flagrant hip check on Jerome Williams
, and played just seven minutes before intermission.
"I thought that one, to me, wasn't a flagrant. I know what he is trying to do," Scott said. "If it was a flagrant foul, Kenyon wouldn't have tried to help the guy up."
Rookie Richard Jefferson
added 17 points, Kerry Kittles
14 and Keith Van Horn
nine and 11 rebounds for New Jersey, which has not lost at the Meadowlands since a 109-96 setback to Orlando on January 4.
The Nets improved the best record in the Eastern Conference to 31-14, and New Jersey fans finally are taking notice. The attendance of 20,049 marked just the Nets' second home sellout of the season and the crowd again chanted "MVP" for Kidd late in the game.
"This time, I started laughing. I can't worry about that stuff now," Kidd said. "There's a lot of basketball left. We're trying to get two more wins before the break. We want to end the first half on a good note."
scored 18 points and Antonio Davis
added 14 and 12 rebounds for the Raptors, which had a three-game winning streak snapped and lost for just the second time in 10 games.
Coach Lenny Wilkens felt his team got no help from the officials. The Raptors went to the line 23 times compared to 30 for the Nets.
"Any time we bumped them, it was called," Wilkens said. "It just has to work both ways, especially in close games."
A finger roll by Jefferson with 9:51 left gave the Nets an 80-70 lead before the Raptors began chipping away. A three-point play by Davis and a jumper by Curry tied it at 89-89 with 2:36 left.
Kidd and Davis each sank a pair of free throws to set the stage for Kidd's go-ahead 3-pointer.
The Nets built an early 12-point lead, using a 16-5 run to take a 26-14 cushion with two minutes left in the first quarter. The spurt was capped with a three-point play by Jefferson and a long jumper by Lucious Harris
The Raptors cut the deficit to one on several occasions in the second quarter, the last coming on a basket by Carter that made it 36-35. New Jersey later responded with a 10-4 run to close the half to take a 52-44 lead. Kidd sank an 18-foot jumper and fed Kittles for a pair of baskets in the final minute.