Toronto Raptors beat Indiana Pacers to clinch top spot in NBA’s Eastern Conference
TORONTO – The Toronto Raptors have clinched the No. 1 spot in the Eastern Conference, won the Atlantic Division title, and broken their franchise record for regular-season wins.
Serge Ibaka scored 25 points to lift the Raptors to their historic 92-73 victory over the Indiana Pacers on Friday, Toronto’s 57th win of the season, and 33rd at the Air Canada Centre. Both topped the previous records set in the 2015-16 season. The Raptors (57-22) have three games left of the regular season.
DeMar DeRozan added 12 points, while Jakob Poeltl finished with 10, and Kyle Lowry doled out nine assists.
Glenn Robinson had 12 points, Trevor Booker finished 11 points, and Canadian and former Raptors guard Cory Joseph scored six off the bench for the Pacers (47-33).
Playing in their Drake-inspired black and gold OVO jerseys, the Raptors led from the opening tipoff and, other than a second-quarter blip when they allowed the Pacers to pull within four points, they dominated for most of the night in front of a capacity Air Canada Centre crowd that included Drake.
They pulled away in the third quarter thanks largely to Ibaka, who shot a perfect 5-for-5 – including a pair of three-pointers – that put the Raptors ahead by 27 points. They took a 72-49 lead into the fourth.
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