With Durant forced to leave, Raptors beat Nets 123-117

·2 min read

NEW YORK — With Kevin Durant forced out of the game in the third quarter because of the NBA's health and safety protocols, the Toronto Raptors beat the Brooklyn Nets 123-117 on Friday night behind 33 points from Pascal Siakam.

Durant's first game against the Raptors since rupturing his Achilles tendon in the 2019 NBA Finals was a frustrating one for him and a confusing night for everyone. The superstar forward wasn't available to start the game — entering as a reserve for the first time in his 867-game NBA career — then was told he had to depart in the third quarter.

The Nets had rallied from a 17-point deficit by then to take the lead, but couldn't hold on without the NBA's No. 2 scorer.

Kyle Lowry added 30 points and seven assists for the Raptors. Siakam had 11 rebounds and six assists.

Joe Harris scored 19 points and James Harden had 17 points and 12 assists for the Nets. Durant finished with eight points, after scoring 20 or more in each of his first 17 games, his longest streak to start a season in his career.

TIP-INS:

Raptors: Fred VanVleet finished with 11 points on 4-for-16 shooting. VanVleet's 54 points against Orlando on Tuesday was the most by an undrafted player in NBA history, according to the Elias Sports Bureau. ... Toronto currently has seven undrafted players on its roster: VanVleet, Aron Baynes, Chris Boucher, Terence Davis, Matt Thomas, Yuka Watanabe, and Paul Watson.

Nets: Kyrie Irving had just 15 points after scoring a season-high 39 in his last game. ... The Nets had scored 120 or more points in a franchise record-tying four straight games. They set the previous record from January 15-21, 1984.

IS THAT REALLY YOU?

This was the first meeting of the two teams since the Raptors swept the Nets 4-0 inside the bubble in Orlando during last summer’s playoffs. Only four players on the Nets roster during that series (Chris Chiozza, Joe Harris, Tyler Johnson, Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot) remain on the team.

UP NEXT

Raptors: Visit Atlanta on Saturday night

Nets: Visit Philadelphia on Saturday night.

Jeffrey Bernstein, The Associated Press