73 - 94 Final
  for this game

Bargnani, Bosh help Raptors trounce Rockets

Jan 3, 2009 - 5:29 AM TORONTO (Ticker) -- Andrea Bargnani and Chris Bosh scored 19 points apiece as the Toronto Raptors snapped a three-game slide with a 94-73 demolition of the Houston Rockets on Friday.

Joey Graham was the only other player to reach double figures with 10 points for the Raptors, who turned in their best defensive performance of the season by limiting the Rockets to 34 percent (28-of-82) shooting while forcing 21 turnovers.

"Yeah, we needed that," Bosh said. "Everyone was thinking the 'new year' thing and how to start off fresh, get a change of momentum, and that was a good win for us.

"I'm really proud of the way we played the same way throughout the game. We had a good practice (Thursday) and it kind of bled over into the game."

Bargnani, shot 8-of-12 from the floor and grabbed six rebounds in 33 minutes before sitting out most of the fourth quarter.

"He's been playing well," Bosh said of Bargnani. "He's taking the challenge on offense and defense, he's rebounding the basketball and doing a good job."

The lone downside for Toronto was when point guard Jose Calderon went down with a right hamstring injury with 8:07 left in the second quarter. He did not return.

"With Jose out, everybody had to step up," Bargnani said. "Will (Solomon) played more minutes and played great. I feel good, I played a lot of minutes and when you play a lot of minutes it's easier to get into the rhythm of the game."

Luis Scola gave the Rockets their only lead of the game with a jumper at the 5:39 mark of the first quarter to make it 12-11. But the Raptors took charge from there, closing out the opening period on a 14-2 run and never trailing again.

Houston pulled within 31-30 on Ron Artest's 3-pointer with 6:31 remaining in the first half before Toronto surged into the break with a 17-8 run. Bargnani scored eight straight points during the spurt and finished with 12 on 5-of-7 shooting in the first half.

The Rockets came out of the break in even worse form, scoring just 11 points in the third to set a season low for points in a quarter.

"I'm just disappointed in the way we played, we played very poorly tonight," Rockets coach Rick Adelman said. "Give them credit, but that's not an effort that's going to get us too many wins, especially on the road.

"We need to find a way to get out of this. We need to come together as a group and decide how we want to play. It's one thing to get beat but it's another thing to get outworked and I think we got outworked. It's a long road trip and we need to find a way to get out of this."

With the game out of hand in the fourth quarter, Houston reserve guard Von Wafer got into the game and managed to tie his career high with 18 points on 7-of-9 shooting in 12 minutes.

Meanwhile, star guard Tracy McGrady managed just four points on 2-of-9 shooting in 29 minutes. Yao Ming finished with 14 points and Ron Artest chipped in 12 for the Rockets, who have lost four of their last six games.

"We're not giving a good effort for whatever the reason at both ends of the court," McGrady said. "We're not executing, we are missing assignments. I got a little frustrated. It's hard to get into the groove when you touch the ball once every five minutes.

"For whatever reason, I haven't been getting that many shots, and it's frustrating when there are times when I know I can go 1-on-1, but we are all out of sync. I'm being more of a point forward out there than what I used to be, which is a scorer."