TORONTO, April 12 (Ticker) --
After faltering Wednesday, the Toronto
Raptors got their miraculous charge toward the playoffs back on
track with the biggest win in franchise history.
matched a season high with 20 points and Keon
added 20 as the Raptors shot 69 percent from the field in
the first half on their way to their 10th win in 11 games, a
112-73 rout of the Atlanta Hawks.
"You just have to keep shooting," said Clark, who was 9-of-9
from the floor. "Shoot when you're on, shoot when you're off,
you never know when a night like this is going to happen."
"The only thing that will defeat Keon is Keon," Toronto coach
Lenny Wilkens said. "We push him hard because he is a guy that
can get to another level."
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Keon Clark made all nine of his shots in a game-high 20-point performance.
Two days after their nine-game winning streak was stopped by
Indiana, the Raptors (40-39) have a one-game lead over Milwaukee
and the Pacers, who are tied for eighth place in the East.
Toronto's entire playoff run has taken place without All-Star
, who was lost for the season 12 games ago.
"We are having fun, I can't explain it at all," said Morris
, who scored 18 points. "I think every guy in this
locker room has worked hard. We will enjoy the win tonight and
tomorrow, it's back to work."
netted 20 points for the Hawks, who posted an upset
win over playoff-bound Charlotte on Wednesday but trailed by 11
points 2 1/2 minutes into their sixth straight loss to the
Toronto completed its first season sweep of Atlanta and
surpassed its previous biggest win, a 120-84 triumph over
Portland on January 28, 1997.
"A loss like this is hard, especially when a team sweeps us,
that's always hard," Terry said.
The Hawks had no answer for the Raptors in the first half.
Toronto dished out 20 assists -- four shy of their team record
for one half -- and went 24-of-35 from the floor en route to a
Williams, Peterson and Clark all scored in double figures while
had nine by halftime.
added 10 points and 11 assists and Dell Curry
had 10 points as Toronto shot 62 percent (45-of-73) from the
field and dished out 30 assists.
"I don't feel good at all, that was our worst loss all year,"
said Dermarr Johnson
, who finished with eight points.
Leading 21-16 with 2 1/2 minutes left in the first quarter,
Toronto ended the period on an 8-1 run. The Raptors continued
to pour it on, outscoring the Hawks in the second, 34-19.
scored just 13 points on 5-of-14 shooting
and Hanno Mottola
chipped in with 10 points for Atlanta, which
has lost three of its last four games.