James, struggling Cavs routed again, Raptors romp 133-99
FILE - Toronto Raptors' DeMar DeRozan shoots during the first half of an NBA basketball game Chicago Bulls Wednesday, Jan. 3, 2018, in Chicago.The Raptors won 124-115. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)
By Ian Harrison, Associated Press
TORONTO (AP) — LeBron James and the struggling Cleveland Cavaliers absorbed their most-lopsided loss of the season when they were routed by the Toronto Raptors 133-99 on Thursday night (Friday, PHL time).
The Cavaliers have dropped 6-of-8 dating to a Christmas Day defeat at defending champion Golden State. James scored 26 points in this loss while Isaiah Thomas missed his first 11 shots.
After losing to Minnesota 127-99 on Monday (Tuesday, PHL time), the Cavaliers fell by an even bigger margin. Toronto's 133 points were the most by any Cavaliers opponent this season, and marked the third straight game that Cleveland has allowed at least 127.
Fred VanVleet scored a career-high 22 points, Jonas Valanciunas had 15 points and a season-high 18 rebounds and the Raptors overcame the absences of two starters.
C.J.Miles scored 16 points, Pascal Siakam and Norm Powell each had 14 and DeMar DeRozan 13 for the Raptors, who were without point guard Kyle Lowry (bruised tailbone) and forward Serge Ibaka (suspension). Jakob Poeltl had 12 points and 12 rebounds for the Raptors.
VanVleet made 6-of-8 three-point attempts as the Raptors connected on a season-high 18 shots from beyond the arc.
Toronto's 12-game home winning streak was snapped in Tuesday's (Wednesday, PHL time) loss to Miami, but the Raptors bounced back in their first meeting with Cleveland since the Cavaliers swept the Raptors out of the second round of the playoffs last May.
Thomas connecting on a short jumper at 7:22 of the third quarter for his first basket. He finished 2-for-15 and went 0-for-6 from three-point range. Playing for the fourth time this season as he returns from a right hip injury, Thomas scored four points in 24 minutes.
Lowry missed his second straight game after he was injured in a heavy fall in overtime of Monday's win at Brooklyn. Lowry participated in shootaround Thursday morning (late Thursday, PHL time) but is still too sore to play.
Ibaka served a one-game suspension for throwing a punch at Miami's James Johnson in Tuesday's (Wednesday, PHL time) home loss to the Heat.
Leading 30-24 after one quarter, the Raptors extended their lead in the second thanks to their bench. Siakam scored 10 points and VanVleet had eight as Toronto led 65-40 at halftime.
Cleveland missed all seven of their three-point shots in the first half.
DeRozan scored 11 points in the third and Toronto took a 100-72 lead into the fourth.
Cavaliers: Thomas missed all 10 of his field goal attempts in the first half. ... G Derrick Rose who has been out since Nov. 7 (Nov. 8, PHL time) with an ankle injury, will not play Friday at Indiana. G Iman Shumpert, out since Nov. 20 (Nov. 21, PHL time) with a knee injury, is also expected to miss Friday's (Saturday, PHL time) game. ... Cleveland is 11-11 on the road.
Raptors: Outscored Cleveland 76-48 in bench points. ... Out-rebounded the Cavs 63-35.
Cavaliers: Thomas is expected to rest when Cleveland concludes a back-to-back by visiting Indiana on Friday (Saturday, PHL time). The Pacers have won both meetings with the Cavs this season.
Raptors: Host Golden State on Saturday (Sunday, PHL time). Toronto has lost seven straight to the Warriors.