Pascal Siakam scored 26 points, Fred VanVleet added 22 and the Toronto Raptors never trailed en route to a 117-92 victory over the Brooklyn Nets on Friday afternoon near Orlando.
The second-seeded Raptors have secured a 3-0 series lead for the first time in team history and they can close out the Nets on Sunday night in Game 4 of their Eastern Conference first-round series.
Siakam made 11 of 23 shots from the floor while collecting eight rebounds and five assists for Toronto, as they overwhelmed Brooklyn on the boards by a 56-42 margin.
- Points: Tyler Johnson – 23
- Assists: Caris LeVert – 6
- Rebounds: Jarrett Allen – 17
- Points: Pascal Siakam – 26
- Assists: Kyle Lowry – 7
- Rebounds: Serge Ibaka – 13
VanVleet made 8 of 13 shots and hit six three-pointers, including a buzzer-beater from beyond midcourt that put Toronto up 57-42 by half-time.
He also hit another three-pointer with about a minute left in the third that helped Toronto take an 84-68 lead into the fourth quarter.
Reserve Serge Ibaka contributed 20 as the Raptors led by as many as 31 points and posted their second double-digit win of the series.
Kyle Lowry nearly posted a triple-double with 11 points, 10 rebounds and seven assists while Norman Powell also chipped in 11.
NBA first-round playoff games live on Sky Sports
- Gm 2: Trail Blazers @ Lakers | Friday 2am | Sky Sports Arena
- Gm 3: Clippers @ Mavericks | Saturday 2am | Sky Sports Arena
- Gm 3: Heat @ Pacers | Saturday 8:30pm | Sky Sports Arena
- Gm 4: Celtics @ 76ers | Sunday 6pm | Sky Sports Arena
- Gm 4: Lakers @ Trail Blazers | Tuesday 2am | Sky Sports Arena
Tyler Johnson was promoted to the starting line-up and scored a playoff career-high 23 points for the Nets while starting for Joe Harris, who missed the game due to personal reasons.
Caris LeVert was limited to 15 points and Brooklyn’s starting tandem of Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot and Garrett Temple registered a combined 5 of 30 from the floor.
Chris Chiozza added 14 but Jarrett Allen was held to four and did not attempt a shot in a game where he grabbed 17 rebounds.
Brooklyn shot 33.3 per cent, including 31.4 per cent from three-point range, setting a team record for attempts in a postseason game.
The Raptors raced out to a 16-5 lead and led 24-17 after the first quarter, before reeling off 11 straight points to secure a 35-19 lead. Siakam’s lay-up made it 51-34 before VanVleet’s dramatic shot extended their cushion.
The Nets reduced the deficit to within 64-55 on a three-pointer by Johnson, but the Raptors ripped off eight straight points highlighted by transition three-pointers from Siakam and VanVleet for a 72-55 lead less than two minutes later.
Toronto then secured the victory with about eight minutes left on a jumper by Siakam that made it 100-78, before they eventually closed out the win by 25 points.