for this game

Parker, Bosh help Raptors edge Pistons

Apr 14, 2007 - 5:33 AM TORONTO (Ticker) -- The Toronto Raptors needed this one more than the Detroit Pistons.

Anthony Parker scored 21 points and All-Star Chris Bosh chipped in 18 and 16 rebounds as the Raptors posted an important 87-84 triumph over the Pistons.

The win kept Toronto (46-33) 2 1/2 games ahead of Miami (44-36) for home-court advantage in the opening round of the Eastern Conference playoffs.

"This team is still trying to do a lot of big things this year and we are trying to stay humble and modest and continue to work hard," Bosh said. "We want to win a championship and that's the mind frame we are trying to go into the playoffs with."

"That's what we want, definitely we play our best basketball here with our fans behind us so that's our ultimate goal," Toronto guard T.J. Ford said.

On Wednesday, Detroit (51-28) wrapped up its second straight conference title, home-court advantage throughout the Eastern playoffs and fifth Central Division crown in six years.

Detroit jumped out to comfortable 50-37 cushion at intermission behind 47 percent (19-of-40) shooting from the field. Richard Hamilton netted 12 of his 24 points in the first half.

With most of Detroit's starters resting, Toronto used an impressive 12-2 surge to close within 77-76 when Ford fed Joey Graham for a fast-break layup at the 3:49 mark in the fourth quarter.

"That's what good teams do, they find a way to get it done," Bosh said. "No matter what happens on offense it's your defense that keeps it close and eventually we knew were going to knock down shots."

Parker drained a high-arching 3-pointer from the top of the key right before the shot clock sounded and Bosh scored a layup with 1:10 remaining as the Raptors grabbed an 83-79 edge.

"Some might say that was a lucky shot but you need to have luck on your side to be successful in this league," Ford said. "Everybody did something to get this win which was key for us."

"It's tough to face Bosh and then Parker hits that crazy shot," Pistons forward Carlos Delfino said. "We missed some shots but it was good because we don't get to play in those types of situations. It gives us confidence that if we get into games in the playoffs we will be more ready."

Detroit's Lindsey Hunter connected on a shot from the arc to cut the deficit to one with 56 seconds left. But Ford's steal from Jason Maxiell helped set up his own awkward floater off the glass with 12 seconds to go.

"It was just good timing," Ford said about the steal. "I saw an opportunity where I thought I could get a steal and I went at it and came away with the ball which really helped us. If we don't come away with that you never know what might have happened."

"Then coach (Sam Mitchell) put me in the situation where I was able to get to the hole and was able to make a big shot," Ford added.

The Pistons had a chance to tie the game, but Hunter misfired on their final possession and Ford sank a pair of free throws to seal the victory.

Delfino scored 11 points and Antonio McDyess added 10 and seven rebounds for Detroit, which shot 38 percent (31-of-80) and scored 26 points in the paint.

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