Raptors beat Heat in Game 7, earn
showdown with Cavaliers
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[May 16, 2016]
(The Sports Xchange) - Led by 35
points from Kyle Lowry and 28 from fellow guard DeMar DeRozan, the
Toronto Raptors beat the Miami Heat 116-89 at home on Sunday in the
seventh and deciding game of their Eastern Conference semifinal series.
Raptors forward Patrick Patterson (54) drives to the basket as Miami
Heat forward Justise Winslow (20) tries to defend during the second
quarter in game seven of the second round of the NBA Playoffs at Air
Canada Centre. Mandatory Credit: Nick Turchiaro-USA TODAY Sports
The victory puts the Raptors in the Eastern Conference final for
the first time in franchise history, against the LeBron James-led
The series starts on Tuesday in Cleveland.
Raptors coach Dwane Casey sees it as "as another step" for his team
but says they are not going to rest on any laurels.
"For this program from where we started to where we are now, it's
very important," Casey said.
"I think we've done everything we set out to do, but again, we're
not done yet."
The ultimate goal is an NBA championship.
"I'm not saying we can do that," Casey said. "But I think this group
is hungry and never say never. I know one thing, our guys will
Added DeRozan: "We're so focused on getting ready for our next
"Once you get into the postseason you learn nothing is going to be
easy. It gets tougher every single game."
Guards Goran Dragic and Dwyane Wade led the Heat with 16 points
"They were the better team for the majority of the game," Wade said.
"With what we had we fought tooth and nail to get to that goal of
the Eastern Conference final and fell one game short. We exhausted
all possibilities. We did everything we possibly could to
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Added Miami forward Luol Deng: "Obviously this is why you play the
season, you play to have home court.
"Even though we took one here, they came back and took one (in
Miami). But when it comes down to Game 7, it is very difficult to
win on the road."
Miami coach Erik Spoelstra was magnanimous in defeat and tipped his
hat to Toronto.
"You have to respect an organization that has gone through some pain
in the playoffs and then to be able to overcome that," he said.
"It was a heck of a series to be involved with. It's unfortunate
that people thought that this was maybe not the most elegant series
but it was one of the more competitive ones."
(Editing by Andrew Both)
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