Parker delivers Raptors to .500Jan 27, 2007 - 4:54 AM TORONTO (Ticker) -- A career game by Anthony Parker kept the Toronto Raptors and Boston Celtics going in opposite directions.
Parker collected career highs of 23 points and seven 3-pointers, including two during a key fourth-quarter run, as the Raptors posted a 96-90 comeback victory over the sinking Celtics, who lost their 10th straight game for the first time since 2000.
Chris Bosh added 26 points and eight rebounds for the Raptors, who completed a 4-1 homestand, reached .500 for the first time since November 11 and won their ninth game in their last 12.
"It's a good feeling, our main objective is to go out there and win games and play hard and you don't want to get complacent now that you got to .500," Toronto swingman Morris Peterson said. "It's more important for us to go out there night in and night out and leave it on the floor. It's good to be .500, to be above water but our goal is greater than that. We're trying to keep our momentum going and play good basketball."
Parker, who took nine shots from the arc, led a 3-point barrage as Toronto converted 13-of-29 for the game. The 31-year-old started a 19-0 run with a 3-pointer with 6:50 left and added another during the burst, helping the Raptors overcome a 79-73 deficit with 8 1/2 minutes left.
"He was huge, he knocked down those corner threes that he's gotten so good at," Bosh said. "He gave us a couple of second-chance points, he was playing good defense and scoring for us today."
"I just got into a good rhythm from the 3-point line, got some looks, some opportunities, and fortunately today they went in."
Toronto overcame a 15-point fourth-quarter deficit Wednesday to beat New Orleans.
"I'm proud of our team for responding the way that we did, it was very big for us," Bosh said. "Of course, we would have like to be 5-0 but things happen and we need to capitalize at home."
Parker finished 8-of-16 from the floor and added three steals and three assists in 44 minutes. He scored 22 in the season-opener against New Jersey and connected for three 3-pointers three times previous.
"It was great that we were able to come back again tonight and win but you don't want to get yourself in that situation too often," Parker said. "Defensively we played well in the fourth quarter, but we need to be more consistent on the defensive end, especially rebounding. We're still trying to get better as a team.
Al Jefferson had 20 points and 10 rebounds for Boston, which lost a franchise-record 13 straight games in 1997.
"(Losing 10 straight games) is frustrating, it's frustrating for any team but we need to get better and not take it, we need to learn from it, " Jefferson said.
The Celtics went over six minutes without a point in the final period, scored 11 of their 19 points in the last 90 seconds and committed eight of their 18 turnovers in the period.
"We didn't get shots we wanted," Celtics coach Doc Rivers said. "Some we did, but we didn't make. We tried to post down, we tried to run pick-and-rolls, I think we went through the entire arsenal at one stretch. We have to do a better job down the stretch."
The Celtics trailed throughout until an 8-0 run late in the third quarter provided a 71-67 lead with 30 seconds left. Jefferson, who scored 12 points in the quarter, scored on a follow shot, layup and short jumper and Delonte West capped it with a driving layup.
The Raptors forged a 49-43 halftime lead on the strength of 16 points by Bosh and 7-of-14 shooting from the arc, including 3-of-3 from Parker.
Rookie Allan Ray kept Boston afloat in the first half with 14 of his 17 points.
TORONTO 96 FINAL
Jan 26 9:41 PM
TORONTO 69 END, 3RD QTR
Jan 26 8:56 PM
HALFTIME 1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
--- --- --- --- -----
BOSTON 17 26 43
TORONTO 24 25 49 HALFTIME
HIGH SCORERS AT HALFTIME
BOS - ALLAN RAY 14, GERALD GREEN 9, AL
TOR - CHRIS BOSH 16, ANTHONY PARKER 11, ANDREA
Jan 26 8:11 PM
TORONTO 24 END, 1ST QTR
Jan 26 7:38 PM
- Cavaliers-Raptors Preview May 23
- Cavaliers-Raptors Preview May 23
- Physical intensity picks up between Cavaliers and Raptors May 23
- Cavs' Jones suspended; Raptors coach Casey fined May 23
- Weekend Sports in Brief May 23
- Jones suspended, Casey fined by NBA for Game 3 actions May 22
- DeRozan, Raptors end Cavaliers' streak with 99-84 win May 22
- Raptors need Lowry to step up in Game 3 against Cavaliers May 20
- Perfect 10: Cavs stay unbeaten in postseason, down Raptors May 20
- James' triple-double powers Cavs to rout of Raptors May 20
- Raptors C Valanciunas out for Game 2 versus Cavaliers May 19
- Snoop Dogg, ex-NBA player Peterson host game to help Flint May 19