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Raptors try to close out Nets on TSN, TSN GO, TSN Radio

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The Sports Network
5/2/2014 3:28:28 PM
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BROOKLYN - The Toronto Raptors will try to capture their first best-of-seven series in franchise history and advance into the second round of the 2013-14 NBA Playoffs this evening when they face the Brooklyn Nets in Game 6 at Barclays Center. 

You can watch live coverage now on TSN, TSN GO and TSN Radio 1050. Also, TSN.ca will feature live streaming of the fan festivities at Maple Leaf Square and the post-game news conferences.

The only time the Raptors advanced in the postseason came in 2001 when they defeated the New York Knicks, 3-2. They fell to the Philadelphia 76ers in seven games in the Eastern Conference semifinals that year, but since have failed to get out of the first round the three other times they made the playoffs.

"I think we understand the intensity, we've learned that," Raptors coach Dwane Casey said after practice on Thursday. "It's hard in this league because so much is on the line. We're a young team. It's a positive for these guys to go through this."

The Raptors took the series lead with a 115-113 home win on Wednesday. Any win is important, but Toronto watched a 26-point lead evaporate before finally securing the victory.

"We did everything wrong you could think of in the fourth quarter," Casey said. "This was a learning experience."

The Nets appeared ready to pack it in as they began the fourth quarter in a 91-69 hole and had Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett watching from the bench. Somehow, the combination of Joe Johnson, Deron Williams and an unproven bench totaled 44 points over the final 12 minutes to make things very interesting.

Mirza Teletovic opened the fourth quarter with a 3-pointer and converted a three-point play on the ensuing possession to jump-start a 19-3 run that trimmed the Nets' deficit to 97-91.

Johnson knocked down an open 3-pointer with 3:19 left to pull even at 101-101, and it was knotted at 106-106 prior to a huge 3-pointer from Toronto's Kyle Lowry.

Two DeMar DeRozan free throws stretched the margin to 113-108, though Alan Anderson's second four-point play of the quarter gave the Nets hope inside 10 seconds to play.

After DeRozan sank two clutch free throws for a three-point game, the Raptors fouled Andray Blatche, who made his first free throw and grabbed his own rebound after intentionally missing the second. Blatche's pass back to the top of the key, however, went over Williams' head and into the backcourt for a violation, and the Raptors barely hung on for the win.

"Hopefully, this put us on high alert," said Casey.

Lowry led the way with 36 points behind six 3-pointers, including the gigantic go-ahead one with 1:04 remaining. DeRozan added 23 points and Jonas Valanciunas chipped in with 16 for Toronto,

Johnson paced Brooklyn with 30 points, Teletovic added 17 off the bench while Williams and Anderson each netted 13 in the setback.

"The guys fought," Nets head coach Jason Kidd said. "They put us in a position to win on the road, but we didn't do the little things."

If the Nets can force Game 7, it will be on Sunday at the Air Canada Centre. If Toronto prevails on Friday, the Raptors will meet the Miami Heat in the second round.

Patrick Patterson (Photo: Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images)

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(Photo: Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images)

RAPTORS VS NETS

GAME NOTES

Raptors: seeking 2nd playoff series win in franchise history (defeated Knicks in First Round in 2001)

Raptors: 4-16 all-time in road playoff games (snapped a 13-game ROAD playoff game losing streak in last road game – Game 4)

DeMar DeRozan (TOR): 4 straight 20-point playoff games, the 2nd-longest streak in Raptors history (Vince Carter - 8)

Nets: 0-4 all-time in best-of-7 series when trailing 3-2 (as a NBA franchise)

Nets: 3-3 in HOME playoff games over the last 2 postseasons

Deron Williams (BKN): 23.0 PPG (46/2) in 2 wins this series; 12.7 PPG (38/3) in 3 losses

Looking ahead to a potential Game 7: Raptors are 0-1 all-time in Game 7s (lost to 76ers in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Semifinals); Nets are 0-2 all-time in Game 7s as a NBA franchise (lost Game 7 of the 2004 Eastern Conference Semifinals to the Pistons and fell to the Bulls in Game 7 of the 2013 Eastern Conference First Round)
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