BROOKLYN, N.Y. - Up against the wall, with a season that began more than half a year ago hanging in the balance, the Raptors responded and then responded some more.
In as gritty a performance as you'll see in today's NBA, the never quit, always punching above their weight class Raptors lived to fight another day, squaring this seven-game series with the Nets at two apiece.
The final was 87-79, but it was far closer than that. DeMar DeRozan had a scorching first half, scoring 20 of his team-leading 24 points, Kyle Lowry added 12 of his 22 in an inspiring second half and a resurgent Amir Johnson added 17.
Paul Pierce scored 22 for Brooklyn, 10 more than any of his teammates, as the Nets were held to 41.2% shooting.