Published: Mon, February 25, 2019
Sport | By Kayla Schwartz

Kawhi steals ball from DeRozan before game-winning dunk for Raptors

Kawhi steals ball from DeRozan before game-winning dunk for Raptors

Leonard scored 19 of his 25 points in the second half, and combined with Kyle Lowry to strip DeRozan at midcourt before racing in alone for a one-handed slam.

The 20,048 Raptors fans at the soldout Scotiabank Arena showed the love affair with the 29-year-old from Compton, Calif., is far from over, rewarding him with three standing ovations.

With the Spurs up 117-116 and in possession of the ball late, it looked like Toronto would need to foul to get the ball back. It was a much different story for DeMar DeRozan in Toronto on Friday night.

The Spurs hosted the Raptors in their first matchup since the trade went down this summer, and the energy of DeRozan and the San Antonio crowd helped the Spurs jump out to a huge early lead and they never looked back during the 125-107 victory.

How did you expect the Spurs-Raptors matchup to end? After re-signing with the Raptors in 2016 he said he wanted to be a Raptor for life.

The longest, loudest cheer came after a tribute video that ran during the first timeout.

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Friday night he was asked if the game was like seeing his ex for the first time. The 90-second video ended with the words "Thank You DeMar", bringing the fans to their feet.

DeRozan tried to carry the ball up court but slipped while being pressured.

"I think the intensity of the last one and the intensity of possibly the next one (versus the Celtics)", Nurse said.

The Raptors are 13-3 without Leonard, who's averaging 26.9 points and 7.6 points in 44 games for Toronto this season. While the crowd response wasn't quite as intense, almost half the arena was standing and cheering for the Raptors' No. 9 overall pick in the 2016 National Basketball Association draft.

DeRozan then failed to capitalize on a potential opportunity to hit the game-winning shot on San Antonio's next trip down the court. DeRozan recorded his first career triple-double in that game with 21 points, 14 rebounds and 11 assists. "To come back and get a reception like that is definitely humbling, beyond gratifying, and I appreciate it".

Marco Belinelli scored 21 points for San Antonio.

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