Newcomer Leonard scores 24 as Raptors beat Cavaliers 116-104

Jonas Valanciunas had six points to go with 12 boards, but it was his passing - including a handsome behind-the-back bounce pass to OG Anunoby for a dunk - that delighted the crowd.

The Congolese native wound up finishing the game with four players from the starting lineup: Siakam, Leonard, Kyle Lowry and Danny Green (which are the four starters that I had correctly predicted).

Toronto was the East's top seed and finished four games ahead of the Celtics previous year, and many have warned that the Bostonians might not be quite the lock to make it to The Finals if Leonard is healthier and more engaged than he was last season in San Antonio.

DeRozan's absence did not affect Lowry's performance as he led the Raptors in scoring with 27 points and added eight assists in a 116-104 win. "It's going to be special".

"Jurassic Park's going to be insane". It was a little bit nerve-wracking there towards the end, it's one of those coaching when you've got a nice lead and all of a sudden it starts shrinking down there towards the end, that clock seems to be moving really slow. We take a look, beginning with the starters. Tip-off inside the Target Center is scheduled for 8:00 p.m. EST. The Celtics are 12-3 SU in their past 15 meetings with NY, including a 6-2 SU mark in eight visits to Madison Square Garden, covering in five of those outings.

I ran around, jumped, blocked a couple shots (Tuesday) so I feel good doing everything. I thought we did that in the second half.

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"The way we look at it is when we make the playoffs, people are going to be pretty shocked and we just can't wait to shock everybody".

"Toronto's always been a tough team for us, especially going into their place. Yeah, we've got some room for improvement, that's for sure". You know how this league works. "He's a great player".

For the first time since arriving in Cleveland four years ago, Love is expected to play the role of Cavaliers' floor general - a position previously filled by a certain someone named LeBron James.

But it'll also be an opportunity for the Celtics to state their case in a hard environment before a national television audience.

This story was first published on CNN.com, "NBA: There is life after LeBron James, says Cleveland's Kevin Love".

Told this, Irving said, "Yeah, there's nothing like dominating on the road. That's the style we want to play, everyone's involved that way, I think everyone has fun playing that way".

(Copyright © 2015. All Rights Reserved.)
 
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