Saturday , Apr , 26 , 2008 C.Y. Ellis

Toronto Can’t Stop Lewis, Turkoglu When it Counts, Now Down 3-1 In Series

Toronto Can't Stop Lewis, Turkoglu When it Counts, Now Down 3-1 In Series

Game 4 was the closest game throughout this series, as neither team gained a double-digit lead in the first quarter, in fact, neither team ever gained a double-digit lead period.  In contests like this it comes down to the final minutes, where the Raptors again, just like in Game 2, just couldn’t cut it.

The Raptors were outscored -, in the final minutes as they absolutely couldn’t stop the Magic in the final minutes while sputtering offensively.  First it was Jameer Nelson, who scored 10 consecutive points midway through the fourth quarter to first give the Magic their first lead since midway through the fourth quarter.

Then it was Rashard Lewis and Hedo Turkoglu, who used their size and quickness to their advantage over their smaller defenders as they combined to score Orlando’s next 12 points.  Overall, the Magic outscored the Raptors 12-2 in the final 2:29, as big three-pointer first from Turkoglu and then from Lewis pushed really killed any hopes the Raptors had, putting even more pressure on themselves.

That was really the main story of the game, which was very close throughout, was the lapsing of the Toronto defense late.

Another story, though, was the lack of offensive help behind Chris Bosh.  Bosh followed a poor six quarters hugely today, scoring a playoff high 39 points and 15 rebounds.  But there just wasn’t much there beyond Bosh though, as T.J. Ford added 12 points and 13 rebounds to give him the next best support.  Anthony Parker scored a very quiet 12 points and 7 rebounds, while Jason Kapono had another strong effort off the bench with 12 points.

Especially struggling were Jose Calderon and Andrea Bargnani, who combined to shoot 2-for-14 from the field, scoring only 7 points.

Rashard Lewis led the Magic with 27 points, 13 rebounds, and 5 assists, while Dwight Howard and Jameer Nelson added 19 points each.  Howard nearly had a triple-double with 16 rebounds and 8 blocks, while Nelson added 5 assists.  Hedo Turkoglu struggled mightily through the first three quarters, turning the ball over 7 times in this period, but he was big late and finished with 18 points and 9 rebounds.  Keith Bogans would add 12 points off the bench in the Orlando victory.

This puts the Raptors in a very bad position though, as they now face elimination and are down 3-1 in the series heading back to Orlando.  They absolutely have to get off to a better start than they did in the first two contests in Orlando, where they trailed by at least 18 points in the first quarter in both contests.  It will be a tough though, but they will need to do a better job defensively down the stretch if they are in the game.

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