Raptors rise to the occasion against Hawks

Raptors forward Rudy Gay drives around Hawks forward Mike Scott during Tuesday night's game in...

Raptors forward Rudy Gay drives around Hawks forward Mike Scott during Tuesday night's game in Atlanta. (REUTERS)

FRANK ZICARELLI, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 5:01 PM ET

ATLANTA - Only in a me-first league such as the NBA do players summon more knowing the national spotlight is on them.

How else can one begin to explain the sublime first half the Raptors would put on Tuesday night, a night when TNT aired a Toronto tip for the first time in recent memory.

There was nothing compelling about a Raptors-Hawks matchup, but the tragic and horrific events in Boston on Monday forced Tuesday’s start time to move to 8 p.m., a time slot reserved for the network.

About the only noteworthy item with the Raptors is whether the year would end in a 50-loss season.

The Hawks are advancing to the post-season, their best road through the No. 6 seed, which would avoid an eventual matchup with the top-seeded Heat.

To get that far, the Hawks need to get out of the first round and actually win more than one series for the first time since the days of Mookie Blaylock.


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