The Toronto Raptors blew an early 19-point lead against the Denver Nuggets on Monday but they survive and win at home, 105-102. DeMar DeRozan and Kyle Lowry led the Raptors while it was a total team effort for the Nuggets.
DeRozan continued his hot start to the season by scoring 33 points while adding five rebounds, an assist and a steal in 39 minutes. With his performance on Monday, he became the first Raptor to score 30 points or more in the first three games of the season, per CBC Sports.
Lowry added 29 points, five rebounds, seven assists and three steals to stave off the Nuggets rally. Jonas Valanciunas had 12 points and nine rebounds while DeMarre Carroll put up ten points in 29 minutes of action.
On the other hand, six Nuggets players scored in double figures with Danilo Gallinari, Will Barton and Emmanuel Mudiay scoring 16 points each. Jusuf Nurkic had a double-double with 13 points and 18 rebounds while also adding five blocked shots.
Jameer Nelson also scored 13 points off the bench while Nikola Jokic added 12 points in 22 minutes. Toronto native Jamal Murray had a disappointing first game in his hometown as he only scored one point in 12 minutes of play for Denver.
Lowry hit the tiebreaking shot with 1:36 remaining in the game before making a layup to make it 105-102. Nurkic was fouled by Valanciunas after the Lowry tiebreaker but the Croatian big man only made one of two free throws.
The Nuggets even got the lead and got it as high as five before Lowry and DeRozan helped the Raptors clawed their way back. The loss has now put the Nuggets record at 1-2 to start the 2016-17 NBA season.
The Nuggets have three days off as they visit the Minnesota Timberwolves on Thursday. On the other hand, the Raptors get a two-day rest before they visit the Washington Wizards on Wednesday.
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