Deron Williams leads Nets over Raptors in Game 1
The Nets traveled to a raucous Air Canada Centre but came out with an important Game 1 victory over the Raptors.
Deron Williams looked like his old self in a 94-87 victory. The guard scored 24 points, while All-Star Joe Johnson also chipped in 24 points and neared a triple-double with eight rebounds and eight assists.
Brooklyn, the No. 6 seed, won their first playoff game under rookie head coach Jason Kidd.
The Raptors struggled in front of a crazed home crowd which was into the game from the opening tip. The crowd booed Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce every time they touched the ball — a treatment Williams also got after a questionable offensive foul he drew on Kyle Lowry in the first half.
Lowry had 22 points, eight assists and seven rebounds, but didn’t get much help from anyone besides Jonas Valanciunas (17 points, 18 rebounds). DeMar DeRozen, who was an All Star for the first time in 2013-14 made no field goals in the first half and finished with just 14 points on 3-of-13 shooting.
Fellow starter Terrence Ross went scoreless in the first half, as the Raptors trailed by four points, and ended up with more fouls (four) than points (three).
Brooklyn managed to win despite shooting a dreadful 4-of-24 (16.7 percent) from 3-point range. They missed 19 straight at one point. Marcus Thornton, Mirza Teletovic and Alan Anderson — the only bench players to attempt a 3-pointer — went a combined 0-of-12 behind the arc.
The Nets and Raptors won’t play Game 2 until Tuesday in Toronto, with Brooklyn traveling back home in the interim.
Follow Metro New York Sports Editor Mark Osborne on Twitter @MetroNYSports.