Inconsistency has plagued the Toronto Raptors all season, as soon as once more dismantling them with postseason hopes.
Zach LaVine took over within the second half because the Chicago Bulls outscored Toronto 109-105 on Wednesday to win their knockout sport. LaVine scored 30 of his 39 factors after halftime as Chicago rallied from a 19-point deficit.
The Raptors made simply 50 p.c of their 36 free throws, together with two essential errors by Pascal Siakam that might have tied the sport with 12 seconds left.
“We didn’t have our greatest final quarter taking part in the way in which we wanted to, we simply couldn’t cease they usually stored scoring,” mentioned Siakam, who completed with 32 factors and 9 rebounds.
“I missed some free throws, particularly these two on the finish, essential however I missed them.”
Fred VanVleet had a double-double, together with seven 3-pointers, for Toronto with 26 factors, 12 rebounds and eight assists. He mentioned it will take him at the least two weeks to course of the loss.
“Regardless of the way you take a look at it, a play-in loss is irritating,” he mentioned. “Whether or not you win or lose, and particularly if you lose, you determine why you misplaced and attempt to perceive it.”
Watch the Bulls come from behind to finish the Raptors’ season in a play-in sport:
The Raptors got here into the sport after ending the common season with a 41-41 file, tied for ninth within the East. That put them forward of the Bulls 40-42.
“We’ve undoubtedly had some good phases, however we’ve additionally had some phases that we haven’t been good at,” Siakam mentioned. “I feel we ought to be higher, if you take a look at the season, with numerous ups and downs.”
Former Toronto guard DeMar DeRozan had 23 factors and 7 rebounds for the Bulls. Heart Nikola Vucevic had a double-double with 14 factors and 13 rebounds.
DeRozan went to the Raptors’ locker room after the sport and had an extended dialog with VanVleet.
“That’s my brother, man,” mentioned VanVleet, who mentioned he and DeRozan hadn’t spoken in weeks and anticipated to satisfy within the play-in.
“It’s good to see him, however I’m not very proud of him in the meanwhile.”
Chicago will face the Warmth in Miami on Friday within the second spherical of the play-in match. The winner of that sport will advance to the eighth seed within the NBA Jap Convention playoffs, taking part in the No. 1 Milwaukee Bucks within the first spherical.
VanVleet hit a buzzer-beating 3-pointer earlier than halftime, bringing the 19,800 followers at Scotiabank Enviornment to their toes and giving the Raptors a 58-47 lead. The Raptors didn’t let as much as begin the third, going 10-3 to open up an 18-point lead.
However LaVine got here alive within the last three minutes of the third, scoring 11 factors, together with eight in a row, to chop Toronto’s result in 81-72.
“LaVine was cooking within the third,” Raptors head coach Nick Nurse mentioned. “They actually stretched out the court docket for us, they bought to our first line of protection they usually drove to the rim.”
An 8-0 run by the Bulls, wherein Regulation was liable for six factors, reduce Toronto’s result in three early within the quarter.
Alex Caruso silenced the sellout crowd with a 3-pointer to tie the sport 91-91 with 6:26 remaining. Scotty Barnes returned with a layup for Toronto, forcing Chicago to name a timeout. Caruso then stole the ball unopposed.
Patrick Beverley hit a 3-pointer on the Bulls’ subsequent possession for his or her first lead of the sport. Siakam’s dunk buoyed the followers, however LaVine responded with a jumper to protect the three-point lead earlier than Barnes and DeRozan traded subject targets.
VanVliet missed a deep 3-pointer, however the rebound fell to Toronto guard Gary Trent Jr., who fed it again to VanVliet for an additional probability to tie the sport. VanVleet didn’t miss his second probability, tying the sport at 100-100 with 3:10 left.
LaVine responded with a two-point shot, then DeRozan grabbed a defensive rebound and scored on the opposite finish to offer the Bulls a four-point lead with lower than two minutes to go.
Barnes transformed a free throw on the Raptors’ subsequent possession. Siakam was fouled by Beverley with 50 seconds remaining to chop Chicago’s result in two.
DeRozan hit a free throw with 28.7 seconds remaining, forcing Toronto to name a timeout. On the following possession, Siakam drove into the online for a two-handed dunk and a one-point deficit to the Raptors.
Watch VanVleet hit a 3 from midcourt:
Caruso was fouled after LaVine’s infield go to the free throw line. Lavin hit each pictures.
Passing the ball to Siakam on a sort out go, Caruso instantly fouled All-Star Toronto with three free throws.
Siakam sinks the primary.
Vucevic was fouled on the rebound of Siakam’s last free throw, and made each of his free throws for the sport’s last rating.