Even Hedo Turkoglu was surprised to find himself heading to the free-throw line with a chance to beat the defending NBA champions.
A driving Turkoglu drew a foul from Pau Gasol, then hit both free throws with 1.2 seconds left as the Toronto Raptors beat the Los Angeles Lakers 106-105 on Sunday night.
“I was surprised. I thought I wasn’t going to go to the line,” Turkoglu said. “Usually I don’t rely on that because sometimes you get calls and sometimes you don’t. I just tried to take the best shot I could.”
Gasol insisted he didn’t foul Turkoglu on the decisive play.
“It was a questionable call,” Gasol said. “I don’t think I pushed him at all. My arm was on his back but I never pushed him. A tough call at a critical part of the game.”
Andrea Bargnani scored 22 points, Chris Bosh and Jarrett Jack each had 18 and Marco Belinelli added 15 for the Raptors, who have won four of six overall and nine of 10 at home.
“Huge win, not only because it is against the Lakers, but we are continuing to play well at home,” Bosh said.
DeMar DeRozan scored 10 points and Bosh had 13 rebounds for his 32nd double-double, tying him with Orlando’s Dwight Howard for the NBA lead.
Elsewhere in the NBA, Dallas hammered New York 128-78 and the Los Angeles Clippers downed Washington 92-78.
At Toronto, Kobe Bryant missed a last-second jump shot and fell one assist shy of his first triple-double of the season, scoring 27 points and grabbing career-high 16 rebounds. Bryant, who shot 11 for 24, has 16 career triple-doubles.
Bryant took an inbound pass from Luke Walton but his fadeaway jumper rimmed out as the Lakers lost for the second time in three games.
“I just wanted to get a good look,” Bryant said. “I wanted to raise up, put enough arc on the ball. It felt pretty good, it just came up a little bit short.”
Jordan Farmar, who scored 17 points, praised Bryant’s efforts but said the Lakers can’t rely on last-second heroics.
“He’s the best finisher in the game, that’s what he does,” Farmar said. “He lives for those moments. We’re happy to have him in those situations, we just don’t want to put him there too much.”
Gasol scored 22 points for the Lakers and Andrew Bynum had 21.
Bryant said the Lakers, 5-5 in their past 10 road games, need to pick up their energy.
“We’re going through a malaise a little bit,” Bryant said. “Things have kind of plateaued right now. At this stage of the season it happens, but you’ve still got to put a whole lot of effort and kick it into high gear and get it going.”
The Lakers didn’t trail through the first three quarters but lost the lead in the fourth on a Bargnani three-pointer with 7:33 left, putting Toronto up 93-90. Farmar answered with a three of his own, but Belinelli hit a three from the corner at 6:26 to restore Toronto’s lead, making it 98-95.
The Raptors weren’t in front for long, with baskets from Gasol and Bryant putting the Lakers back on top, 99-98, with 4:57 left. Bargnani made two free throws to give the Raptors a 100-99 edge with 4:34 left, but Bynum and Farmar countered for Los Angeles, making it 103-100 with 2:24 to go.
Toronto wasn’t done, with Bargnani making the free throw after he was fouled on a reverse layup to make it 105-104 with 1:16 remaining. Bryant and Bargnani both missed jumpers before Belinelli knocked a loose ball out of play with 15 seconds remaining and three seconds on the shot clock. Bryant’s quick jumper bounced off the rim and Bosh grabbed the rebound, giving Toronto one final chance with 11 seconds to play.
The Raptors gave the ball to Turkoglu, who drove from right to left and into a crowd of defenders, where was fouled underneath by Gasol with 1.2 seconds left.
Turkoglu, who went 6-for-6 from the line, made both free throws, setting up the dramatic finish.
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