When Chris Bosh tells the story of his record-setting basket, it’ll sound more like a game-winning dunk than a third-quarter jump shot.
Bosh scored 22 points to become the leading scorer in Raptors history, leading Toronto to a 91-86 victory over the San Antonio Spurs on Sunday night.
“I was thinking it would be really nice to set the record and everything, but I wanted to win, that was the main focus of the whole game,” Bosh said. “It makes it that much better.”
Bosh, who also had 15 rebounds, made a jumper from the top of the key with 1:39 left in the third quarter to eclipse Vince Carter’s mark of 9,420 points. Bosh, who now has 9,428 points, was honoured with a video tribute and standing ovation at the end of the quarter.
Bosh, who kept his game jersey and shoes as mementos, warned that the tale of his big basket might get a little dressing up when he relives it.
“I’m going to hype up the situation. When I tell this story tomorrow, the fish is going to be this big,” Bosh said with a laugh, spreading his arms wide. “You have to make it dramatic and I like telling stories. Hopefully I’ll be able to tell my kids when it’s all said and done.”
Elsewhere in the NBA it was: Charlotte 91 Cleveland 88; New York 132 Indiana 89; Philadelphia 108 Denver 105; and Los Angeles Lakers 131 Dallas 96.
At Toronto, San Antonio’s Tim Duncan praised Bosh for reaching the milestone.
“He’s been an All-Star for years and he’s been a great player, too,” Duncan said. “It’s a great accomplishment for him and I know he’s proud of that fact. He’s had this team on his shoulders for a long time.”
Spurs guard Roger Mason, a teammate of Bosh in 2003-04, also offered congratulations.
“I’m proud of him,” Mason said. “I was here his rookie year and saw the talent. He’s obviously worked very hard. It’s a great achievement.”
Jarrett Jack scored 16 points, Andrea Bargnani had 15 and DeMar DeRozan 11 for Toronto, which has won six of seven and ended the Spurs’ winning streak at five games.
Tony Parker scored 23 points, and Duncan had 21 points and 12 rebounds in a rare reserve appearance. Richard Jefferson scored 12 for the Spurs, who had won 11 of 13.
“Every time we made a play to get right back into it, it seemed like we either made an offensive foul or we missed something easy or we missed free throws,” Duncan said. “We just kind of shot ourselves in the foot.”
San Antonio finished 16 for 27 at the free throw line, with Parker missing five and Duncan four.
Toronto led 67-55 heading into the fourth quarter, but Duncan cut the lead to 81-78 on a three-point play with 2:32 left. Jack and Parker each scored before Bosh’s driving layup made it 85-80 with 56 seconds remaining.
Duncan missed a pair from the line but San Antonio got the ball back after a Jack miss, and Keith Bogans hit a three-pointer with 12 seconds left, cutting it to 85-83. Bosh, Marco Belinelli and Antoine Wright sealed it at the line, each making two free throws in the final 11 seconds.
Toronto avenged a 131-124 loss to the Spurs on Nov. 9, San Antonio’s highest scoring game of the season. Parker and Duncan missed that one with injuries but Manu Ginobili scored 36 points. Ginobili was held in check this time, scoring just five points and making only one of eight field goal attempts.
Duncan, San Antonio’s leading scorer, came off the bench for just the second time in his career and the first time since 2004. He scored 23 points in 36 minutes in Saturday’s win at Washington.
“He’s played a lot of minutes,” coach Gregg Popovich said. “He played more than we wanted last night so we just wanted to have him in the fourth quarter rather than the first. Not too much happens in the first quarter of NBA games.”
Duncan acknowledged not starting was “tough to swallow,” but didn’t argue with the plan, even though he shot just 8-for-22.
“Pop asked me about it and it sounded like a decent idea, just to make sure I had my legs down the stretch,” Duncan said. “It worked, I felt good in the fourth quarter, I just couldn’t get anything to go in the hole.”
Toronto’s Hedo Turkoglu missed the game with flulike symptoms and was replaced by Wright.
Parker shot 6-for-7 and scored 12 points in the first quarter, but the rest of the Spurs went 3-for-17 as Toronto led 27-19 after one.
Jack wasn’t sorry to see Duncan on the bench in the first.
“(Parker) came out and was able to give them a great lift,” Jack said, “but they didn’t have that down-low presence that they typically have.”
San Antonio’s shooting woes continued in the second. Duncan made two free throws to snap a 6:37 scoreless streak, and the Spurs went more than nine minutes between field goals, missing their first seven attempts before a Duncan turnaround hook shot with 4:53 left.
Bobcats 91 Cavaliers 88
At Cleveland, Ronald Murray hit a three-pointer with 56 seconds left to put Charlotte up for good, and the Bobcats surprised the Cavaliers with only their third road victory this season.
Knicks 132 Pacers 89
At New York, Wilson Chandler scored 23 points, David Lee added 22 points and 16 rebounds, and the New York Knicks flirted with the biggest victory in franchise history.
76ers 108 Nuggets 105
At Denver, Allen Iverson scored 17 points and Elton Brand added 16 as Philadelphia held off a furious rally to beat the injury-riddled Nuggets.
Lakers 131 Mavericks 96
At Los Angeles, Jordan Farmar led seven players in double figures with 24 points and the Lakers trounced Dallas.