NBA

DeMar DeRozan.

DeMar DeRozan posts career-high to lead the Raptors to impressive comeback win

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The Toronto Raptors secured their fifth consecutive win thanks to an outstanding performance from their superstar DeMar DeRozan.

The shooting guard posted a career-high 45 points in a hard-fought 114-109 win over the Philadelphia 76ers on the road.

His offensive outburst inspired the Raptors to overcome a 22-point deficit to win the game.

DeRozan was 13-of-21 from the field and got a significant number of his points doing what he does best by getting to the free-throw line as he drained 13-of-15 from the charity stripe.

But the most eye-catching aspect of his scoring came via one part of his game that has always been a weak point for him; the three-point shot.

With the current NBA era being dominated by the three-ball, the 28-year-old - who is arguably the league's most efficient and dangerous mid-range shooter - decided to work on this during the offseason and he finally put it to good effect in Philly.

Normally a 28 percent shooter from beyond the arc, he set a career mark by hitting 6-of-9 from downtown and it's now added another dimension to his offensive arsenal.

Head coach Dwayne Casey coached one of the best long range hitters in NBA history in Ray Allen when he was with the Seattle SuperSonics as an assistant coach and thought he was seeing a reincarnation of the future Hall of Famer

"I thought he was a young Ray Allen," Casey said, per ESPN. "That's what we need from him. It opens up the floor, especially on nights when we just didn't have it. We were playing in mud in the first half."

DeRozan's display had a mixture of everything but he took full advantage of the one skill he's had throughout his career in being able to draw fouls and get to the line frequently.

"That's been my career the past few years, getting to the free throw line," DeRozan said. "Being able to close out the game and me understanding to slow the game down. Get the momentum going our way and try to kill them at the free-throw line."

Toronto ran their offense almost exclusively through the three-time All-Star in the fourth quarter and he continuously delivered.

"Sometimes you're going to have games where you let your All-Star, your superstar, take over," Kyle Lowry said of DeRozan.

Chicago Bulls v Toronto Raptors

The All-NBA guard is once again having a hugely productive season as he's averaging 24.7 points, 5.0 assists and 4.4 rebounds while shooting 49.4 percent from the field.

He has quietly led the Raptors to the number two spot in the Eastern Conference with a 22-8 record.

DeRozan and his team have been flying largely under the radar this year but this explosion will make people take notice and show that they mean business.

Topics:
Toronto Raptors
Atlantic Division
Eastern Conference
NBA
DeMar DeRozan
Kyle Lowry

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