Wednesday , Jan , 03 , 2007 C.Y. Ellis

Suns aim to burn Raptors up north

(Sports Network) – The Phoenix Suns shoot for their fourth straight win when
they close out a three-game road trip tonight against the Toronto Raptors at
the Air Canada Centre.

Phoenix made it three straight wins with Tuesday’s 97-96 victory over the
Chicago Bulls at the United Center. Leandro Barbosa hit a three-pointer with
1.5 seconds on the clock to give the Suns a come-from-behind victory.

Phoenix trailed by as many as 15 in the second half and hadn’t led until that
point since the early stages of the first quarter. Shawn Marion ended with 25
points and nine rebounds, while Amare Stoudemire had 24 points and 18 boards
for the Suns, who have won 19 of their last 21 games.

Barbosa finished with 20 points as the Suns improved to 10-5 away from home
this season. Phoenix also leads the Pacific Division by 2 1/2 games over the
Los Angeles Lakers.

After Wednesday’s tilt up north, the Suns will open a five-game homestand.

Meanwhile, the Raptors have dropped two straight and three of their last four
games, including Saturday’s 110-104 setback to the Memphis Grizzlies at FedEx
Forum.

Morris Peterson led the Raptors with 19 points and Jorge Garbajosa scored 15
points for Toronto. Radoslav Nesterovic and Jose Calderon added 13 points
each, while Nesterovic pulled down nine boards for Toronto, which played
without center Chris Bosh and guard T.J. Ford.

Bosh, Toronto’s leading scorer and rebounder, missed his 12th game with a knee
injury and Ford sat with an ankle injury suffered in Friday’s 107-97 loss to
Chicago. Bosh is probable and Ford is questionable for tonight’s contest.

The Raptors, who are tied atop the Atlantic Division with New Jersey, will
open a three-game homestand today and are 8-4 as the host this season.

Phoenix defeated Toronto, 115-98, on December 19 this season at US Airways
Center and have won five straight, seven of 10 and nine of the last 13
meetings.

The Suns have won two straight and four of its last six trips to the Air
Canada Centre.

PHO TOR