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Raptors Come Up Empty In Oklahoma City
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BOX 

SCORE RECAP PHOTOS VIDEOS
FINAL SCORE
Raptors 99 119 Thunder
Jay Satur
February 28, 2010
Ford Center
Oklahoma City, OK
IT WAS OVER WHEN...

Count the Thunder among the longer, athletic and more defensive-oriented teams that have proven to be a tough matchup for the Raptors. Oklahoma City kept Toronto at bay in the first half, but put the game out of reach with a decisive 15-3 run to finish the third quarter.

With OKC up 76-64, Russell Westbrook sparked it with seven straight Thunder points and five coming via free throws. The result was a third loss in five games without Chris Bosh (ankle sprain) in the lineup.

THE GAME CHANGER

For many Raptors fans, it was possibly their first look at Kevin Durant this season and a pretty impressive introduction for the All-Star forward, who keeps building on his credentials in the race for MVP.

Durant poured in 29 points (9-18 FGM-A, 9-10 FTM-A) from all over the court, capping his night with a two-handed alley-oop finish before taking a seat with the game well in hand mid-way through the fourth quarter.

THE UNDERRATED RAPTOR

DeMar DeRozan had a bounce-back performance on Sunday after struggling somewhat during the Raptors' last three games.

The rookie was looking to attack the basket versus the Thunder, connecting with Antoine Wright early on a spectacular alley-oop early on. He was rewarded for his assertiveness with trips to the line, where he hit five of his six attempts from the stripe on his way to 13 points. DeRozan also added seven rebounds, second only to Amir Johnson's team-leading 11 boards on the night.

THAT'S A RAP

“Tonight (the Thunder’s) length bothered us. They were quicker than us. They tipped the ball a lot and they were just hungrier than us... When you look at the number of turnovers that they forced and the fact that they are number two in defending the “three” and number one in defending field goal percentage… you’re just not going to get many buckets against them. They’re going to try and make it a transition and they did that and we just couldn’t match up.”

- Jay Triano on the loss.

3-GAME OUTLOOK

Mon., March 1 @ Houston Rockets
8:30 PM ET (TSN, FAN 590)

GAME NOTES:
The Raptors (31-27) have little time to dwell on Sunday's disappointing loss, as they close out a back-to-back on Monday against the new-look Rockets in Houston. The Rockets (29-29) are currently on the outside of the Western Conference playoff race and have lost seven of their last nine. The Raptors earned a convincing 101-88 victory over the Rockets at Air Canada Centre on Dec. 13 as Chris Bosh scored 27 points in the win. Bosh (sprained ankle) will miss his sixth consecutive game on Monday night.

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The Numbers
6 Thunder players scoring in double figures on Sunday
2-3 Raptors record in five straight games without Chris Bosh
21-11 Fast break points favouring the Thunder
29 Thunder points off 18 Raptor turnovers, versus 17 points allowed of 13 OKC turnovers
17-24 Free throw shooting for the Raptors, versus 27-33 for the Thunder
They Said It...
Jarrett Jack "It falls on me…I’m one of the leaders on this team and I definitely need to lead by example because people follow my lead. I need to do a better job and everyone else will follow suit."
- Jarrett Jack on Toronto's turnovers.
Scott Brooks "We played both sides of the ball. They got hot in the middle of the second quarter. They got on a nice little offensive run and then we came back and played good defense. We made them miss a lot of shots."
- Thunder head coach Scott Brooks
Hedo Turkoglu "Without Chris (Bosh) we just needed to step up. When he comes back we’re going to be much stronger. His presence will be great throughout the game on both ends of the court. We hope that he comes back soon and put this team in a better situation."
- Hedo Turkoglu on playing without Chris Bosh