Dwane Casey.

Dwane Casey says the Cavaliers will be facing a "different animal" in Cleveland

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The Toronto Raptors have proved in the playoffs that they are tough to beat on their home floor at the Air Canada Centre, which the Cleveland Cavaliers can testify to.

With one of the noisiest crowds in the league at their disposal, the Raptors just won back-to-back home games against the Cavs and evened their Eastern Conference Finals series at 2-2.  

On the road, however, things haven't been so easy for the Canadian outfit. They are 8-2 at home but 2-6 away from Toronto in this postseason.  

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If they are to stand a chance of progressing to a first NBA finals in franchise history, they must beat the favourites in the east in their gym.

Cleveland won the first two encounters at the Quicken Loans Arena by a combined total of 50 points and LeBron James and co. are undefeated in their building so the task will not be an easy one for the Raptors.  

Heading into the series, Toronto had just two days rest as they went to seven games with the Miami Heat in the previous round, whereas the Cavs came off nine days rest which was evident as they dominated both games.

Raptors head coach Dwane Casey, though, believes the Cavaliers will be coming up against a completely different team in game five.

Toronto Raptors v Cleveland Cavaliers - Game One

"I will say this: It's going to be a different animal back in Cleveland, as it is in every series," Casey said Tuesday. "When you go into another team's home territory, it's a little bit tougher. But [the two wins] does give us more rhythm and more confidence going against them now that we have a little bit better feel of what we can and cannot do against this team."

Casey believes after four games, both teams have become familiar with each other and what they're trying to do on the court which makes the minor adjustments crucial.

"It gets into a little more of a chess match as the series goes on," Casey said. "We've learned some things, and I'm sure they have too."

In games one and two, the Cavaliers blew them wide open with runs that led to huge leads the Raptors couldn't recover from.

The second game in Ohio was tied late in the second quarter but the Cavs closed out the half with a 16-2 run, and Casey says limiting this will be the key to stealing a game away from home. 

"The games that we lost there, there were probably three- or four-minute segments, portions of the game that really did us in in both games," Casey said. "If we can sustain our defence against their runs and not let them blow it open in those three- or four-minute segments...and we've got to respond offensively."

The definitive game five takes place in Cleveland tonight and teams that take a 3-2 lead in a best-of-seven series go on to advance 82 percent of the time, which reflects the importance of this encounter. 

Toronto Raptors
Atlantic Division
Eastern Conference
DeMar DeRozan
Kyle Lowry

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