DeRozan leads Raptors to win over Magic
ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — The Toronto Raptors know a lot about patching together a team beset by injuries. They gave the Orlando Magic a lesson Saturday night.
The Raptors have not had their starting five together since the fourth game of the season yet they routed the injury-ravaged Magic 123-88 with tight team play.
DeMar DeRozan scored 21 points, Ed Davis had 18 and Jose Calderon added 15 points and 10 assists as the Raptors had six players in double figures against the Magic's makeshift lineup.
"We don't have any Kobes or LeBrons who just go out and win games for us, we've got to do it as a team," Calderon said. "When we do that, we're pretty good."
"We've had a lot of bad luck early in the season with injuries and close games so it's desperation time every time we step on the court," DeRozan said. "When we make the game fun, everybody's confidence gets high and it feels like we can't be stopped."
There is a sense of desperation creeping into the Magic, who lost their fifth straight since Glen Davis went out with a shoulder injury. Starting point guard Jameer Nelson (hip) and his backup, E'Twaun Moore, joined Davis on the sideline, forcing Orlando to piece together a starting lineup and playing rotation.
It didn't work well. Magic coach Jacque Vaughn gave playing time to all 11 healthy players in the first half when Toronto shot out to a 67-47 lead, but none of the combinations were effective.
Rookie Andrew Nicholson, starting for the second time this year, led Orlando with 22 points. Arron Afflalo had 14 points and Ish Smith, who started in place of Nelson, had 13 points and six assists.
"We were under-manned in the sense that guys had to play different roles in different minutes," Vaughn said. "Toronto made some shots early, which put us on our heels. We were trying to figure out whether it was change in personnel, change in coverage and they just had the ability to make shots. It was one of those nights."
Toronto coach Dwane Casey, who has put together 10 different starting lineups because of injuries this season, had some empathy for the Magic's situation but was more interested in how well his team executed.
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