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                   === Nets rout Raptors to force Game 7 ===
 
 Brooklyn, NY  (SportsNetwork.com) - The Brooklyn Nets will have another Game 7
 to amend for last year's first-round exit.
 
 They got there by pounding the paint.
 
 Deron  Williams  had 23  points, five  rebounds and four  assists and the Nets
 routed  the Toronto  Raptors, 97-83,  in Game  6 of  their Eastern  Conference
 first-round series.
 
 The  Nets  manhandled the Raptors  in the interior  over the first 12 minutes,
 posting  a 22-4  points in  the paint  edge before  taking a  healthy 15-point
 advantage into the second.
 
 Brooklyn,  which outscored Toronto 48-32 in the interior overall, maintained a
 double-digit  lead  throughout the  remainder of the  game despite the Raptors
 making a big run in the fourth.
 
 Williams sprained his left ankle early in the third quarter, but played
 through the injury.
 
 "In  the three games we've won, we've been really aggressive, getting into the
 paint," Williams said.
 
 After  falling  to the  Chicago Bulls  in a Game  7 last  year at the Barclays
 Center,  the Nets brought in Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett in a trade from the
 Boston  Celtics. They  ended up  with a  roster worth  over $180  million that
 features a total of 36 All-Star appearances.
 
 But that may all go for naught if the Nets don't win Game 7 Sunday in Toronto.
 
 Joe Johnson posted 17 points, Garnett provided 13 points and five rebounds and
 Pierce added 12 points and six boards for the sixth-seeded Nets.
 
 "Us  coming out  and hitting  first, that's  what it's  about," Johnson  said.
 "Tonight  we were that  team and we set the tone pretty much to start the game
 and we sustained that throughout the whole 48 minutes."
 
 DeMar DeRozan netted 28 points, while Kyle Lowry, who had 36 points in Game 6,
 was  limited to 11  points on 4-of-16 shooting for Toronto, which hasn't won a
 playoff series since 2001.
 
 "We  worked  for the third seed  to get home-court advantage," Lowry said. "We
 have to take care of home, home is not going to take care of us."
 
 DeRozan,  who had  10 points in the  first quarter, nailed a 3-pointer to pull
 the  Raptors within 14-11 midway through the frame before the Nets used a 13-3
 run  to seize control. They tallied all five of their field goals in the paint
 during  the  burst, which  was capped  on two  Pierce free  throws for a 27-14
 cushion late in the first.
 
 Brooklyn led 34-19 after a quarter of play.
 
 Alan Anderson netted the final four points of the half for the Nets, including
 a  step-back jumper from  the left baseline at the horn for a commanding 60-41
 spread heading into the break.
 
 "They  played  faster, they  got up  and down the  floor," Raptors coach Dwane
 Casey said of the Nets. "They got us on our heels early."
 
 The  Nets led  by as many as 26 in  the third and took a 79-59 margin into the
 fourth.  The Raptors headed into the final frame with a 22-point bulge in Game
 5, but hung on despite Brooklyn tying the game in the closing minutes.
 
 Toronto  was  unable to flip  the script Friday.  Lowry concluded a 14-2 swing
 with a triple to whittle the gap to 86-76 with 5:02 left, but it never got any
 closer.
 
                                   Game Notes
 
 The  Nets shot  46.8 percent (36-of-77) from the floor, while Toronto finished
 at  a 38.5  percent clip  (30-of-78)  ... Toronto  went 26-15  at home,  while
 Brooklyn was 16-25 on the road during the regular season.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 05/02 23:58:29 ET

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