Lowry leads Raptors into conference final against Cavs

Through the first 24 minutes Toronto had a 9-4 edge on the offensive glass and 25-16 on the boards overall, an essential point of business given the Heat's commitment to playing without a true big man and the Raptors answering by keeping either Bismack Biyombo (14 points, 11 rebounds and four blocks in 40 minutes) on the floor as much as possible.

Goran Dragic notched a career playoff high 30 points to give the Miami Heat a 103-91 victory against the Toronto Raptors, extending their series to a decisive game 7.

Lowry had nine assists and seven rebounds while DeRozan finished with 28 points and eight rebounds as Toronto pulled clear of Miami convincingly after a close-fought first half. The Cavs will host Game 1 on Tuesday night.

"They don't want you to make the Eastern Conference Finals". "I think we've done everything we set out to do, but again, we're not done yet". "That's all that matters. I'm proud of myself, I'm proud of the guys but this is definitely a tough one to swallow" said Winslow.

Toronto's All-Stars Kyle Lowry and DeMar DeRozan will now have a legacy of their own.

Toronto's all-star backcourt combined for 63 of the team's 116 points in Game 7. If LeBron or J.R. Smith can get him off his game early then he can be a non-issue throughout the series. "He's been doing it all year, he won us countless games". "I'm not saying we can do that", Casey said. He was 11-for-20 from the field, but, more importantly, Lowry was guiding the the Raptors offense like the point guard he is supposed to be.

The two Raptors All-Stars have been inconsistent so far in the playoffs but seem to be finding their form at the right time.

"We've all watched it and we've witnessed all the things they've done, like hitting 25 3s in a game and 70-something 3s in the series, but that's why we have books and film and we'll have time to scout it and make adjustments".

He did say he never doubted Lowry or Derozan: "We never doubted Kyle and DeMar".

Miami might have got the better of the Raptors in Game 6 with their small lineup, but with time to prepare and adjust, the Raptors made them pay in a big way Sunday. Do we want to go even further? For Josh McRoberts, this involved earning a Flagrant 1 near the beginning of the fourth quarter as he clubbed Bismack Biyombo when the Toronto center went into the paint, presumably for another dunk attempt. Nobody should. Cleveland is propelled by the power of LeBron James, and Cleveland has home-court advantage, and the Cavaliers have been putting the blowtorch to everybody in sight.

After the win on Sunday, scouting reports on the Cavs were delivered to the locker room stalls of every Raptors player.

"We're about to get our work in now that we know who we're playing", James said. "Tonight was just a great atmosphere and I knew that this guy to my left [Goran Dragic] was going to have an fantastic performance tonight". Against the Heat, the Raptors lost starting center Jonas Valanciunas for the series after Game 3 and blew a seven-point lead late in Game 4 when a 3-1 series lead was staring them right in the face.

Raptors coach Dwane Casey sees it as "as another step" for his team but says they are not going to rest on any laurels. They beat good teams all year, Cleveland included, but they have played some of their ugliest basketball in the playoffs.

It's also an historic one. After a fractious, seemingly disinterested regular season, the Cavs swept their two playoff series comfortably, while Toronto lurched and shuddered through the full seven-game distance each time in dispatching first in, and then Miami.

"It's been unbelievable", Lowry, who averaged 31 points on 66 percent shooting and posted a 46.2 PER against Cleveland in the regular season, said of what the Cavaliers have been able to accomplish.

The Raptors were one of four active National Basketball Association teams - the others are Charlotte, New Orleans and Los Angeles Clippers - to never play in the conference finals.

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