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Yukon Territories

Trent Jr. matches season-high 35 in Raptors’ 113-104 win over Suns

TORONTO — Gary Trent Jr. hit his season-high with 35 points as the Toronto Raptors pulled off a two-game slip with a 113-104 win over the Phoenix Suns on Friday.

TORONTO — Gary Trent Jr. hit his season-high with 35 points as the Toronto Raptors pulled off a two-game slip with a 113-104 win over the Phoenix Suns on Friday.

In a 101 tie, Scottie Barnes drilled a three-pointer with 3:16 minutes remaining, followed by a three-pointer from rookie Christian Koloko 1:27 later for a six-point advantage.

It proved just enough as Toronto closed out 2022 by also notching a five-game sled at Scotiabank Arena.

In a dismal month, the Raptors (16-20) went 5-10 in December.

Pascal Siakam scored 26 points, OG Anunoby 16 and Barnes 11 for Toronto.

The Suns (20-17) lost their second straight game, led by Chris Paul’s 20 points and 12 assists. Mikal Bridges scored 21 points and Torrey Craig added 13 points.

The Raptors had an 86-79 advantage after the three quarters. But Bridges followed a three-pointer with a layup to give the Suns a 99-97 lead with 4:41 remaining.

Toronto held a 33-24 lead after the first quarter, only to see the visitors launch a 12-0 run to start the second and take a 34-33 lead.

But Siakam, Anunoby and Trent put together a 16-5 run for the Raptors to give them the advantage. However, the Suns finished the first half strong to ensure Toronto only had a 53-51 advantage en route to the dressing rooms.

The Raptors were without All-Star guard Fred VanVleet (back spasms) and Precious Achiuwa (ankle). The Suns were missing star Devin Booker (groin strain), Cameron Johnson (ankle), Cameron Payne (foot) and Landry Shamet (Achilles).


Analyst Jack Armstrong was recognized for his 25th year with the Raptors during a hiatus in the second quarter. The 59-year-old Brooklyn, NY native has been part of the team’s broadcasts since the 1998-99 season.


The Raptors are last in the NBA at defensive rebounding. So it came as no surprise when they hit a season-high 17 offensive rebounds against the Los Angeles Clippers on Tuesday and 15 more against the Memphis Grizzlies on Thursday.

But the Raptors only got three offensive rebounds in the first half against Memphis, despite ranking fifth in the category at 12.5 per game.

Has the focus on rebounds hurt the Raptors’ transition defense?

“We’re supposed to do both,” Nurse said. “Neither do we. So it was just a problem with focus and energy expenditure (Thursday).”


The Raptors start the new year on the road against the Indiana Pacers Monday and return home for a season-high six home games, starting with the Milwaukee Bucks on Wednesday.

This report from The Canadian Press was first published on December 30, 2022.

Tim Wharnsby, The Canadian Press

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