Pacers leave Raptors out in the cold

Raptors' Jonas Valanciunas fights to keep the ball against two Pacers defenders on Tuesday night....

Raptors' Jonas Valanciunas fights to keep the ball against two Pacers defenders on Tuesday night. (USA TODAY SPORTS)

Ryan Wolstat, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 11:53 PM ET

INDIANAPOLIS - Sitting fat and sassy in fourth place in the East, the Raptors believed consecutive games against leaders Miami and Indiana would give a sense of where the team was at.

The verdict? Getting there, but still short of the true elite. Despite dealing with trying travel conditions that forced the team to arrive in town just five hours before tipoff, the Raptors hung around Tuesday against the NBA’s best, but never overly threatened a day after outplaying the champs until a brutal fourth quarter. In the end on Tuesday, Toronto whittled a 17-point Pacers lead down to six on a couple of occasions, before losing 86-79.

Indiana was still smarting from a Jan. 1 loss to the Raptors, its only home defeat this season. That made one of the league’s edgiest, most physical teams even more so on Tuesday and Toronto couldn’t always handle the uptick in intensity.


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