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Raptors push Nets to brink in wild finish

Kyle Lowry buried a pivotal three-pointer late in a Game 5 win.
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In possibly one of NBA history’s wildest games, the Nets fell just short in a 115-113 Game 5 loss.

After falling behind by 26 points late in the third quarter, the Nets ultimately tied the game in the waning minutes. Somehow, though, Kyle Lowry and the Raptors found a way to win. Lowry and fellow point guard Greivis Vasquez knocked down three-pointers, and Andray Blatche experienced a mental cramp as the game expired.

Dwayne Casey opted to foul Andray Blatche with four seconds left in the game to prevent a game-tying three. The Nets then chose to miss the second free-throw, and they miraculously secured the rebound. What transpired was almost too impossible to believe.

With everything going the Nets’ way, Livingston tapped the loose ball back to Blatche, who subsequently flung the ball over point guard Deron Williams’ head and into the backcourt. An amazing comeback ended with a dud.

Lowry finished with a game-high 36 points and DeMar DeRozan added 23. The Nets’ bench combined to score 47 points.

Dwayne Casey, whose team did actually win the game, sounded like a defeated man after yielding a 44-point fourth quarter. The 44 points the Nets scored in the final 12 minutes bested their second and third quarters combined.

“We’ve got to learn,” Casey said while shaking his head.

The comeback gives the Nets some momentum heading into Game 6. Although not as ideal as a win, the Nets clearly bombarded the Raptors and flexed their veteran muscles. The Raptors exhibited enough fortitude to win the game, but can they close out there series?

The Nets still shot 53.3 percent from the field and got 30 points from Joe Johnson.

“The guys fought and we can build on that,” said Kidd, who kept his hybrid unit in the game and left Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett on the bench. “It's all about the guys on the floor were fighting. They got us back in the game, I asked if they were tired, they weren't tired.”

“We understand what the task is and we feel like we're up to it," Williams added.

The Nets trailed, 91-69, heading into the fourth quarter. Mirza Teletovic opened the frame with a four-point play opportunity, which was a trend. The Nets were fouled in the act of making three separate three-pointers.

The Nets lost control of the game in the second quarter, when the Raptors exploded for 34 points. Lowry capped off the half with a one-handed runner to beat the buzzer.

“It was more not having energy in the first half,” Johnson said of the Nets’ first half. “There are some things that we have to look at and now it's win or go home."

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