Anthony, Knicks top Raptors
Toronto, ON (SportsNetwork.com) - On the brink of elimination, the New York Knicks kept their season alive on Friday.
Carmelo Anthony scored 30 points with eight rebounds and the Knicks took a 108-100 decision from the Toronto Raptors to keep their slim playoff hopes alive.
New York remains two games back of Atlanta for eighth place in the Eastern Conference with three games remaining for both teams.
Amar'e Stoudemire deposited a season-high 24 points with 11 rebounds and J.R. Smith added 15 points in the win.
"Again, Atlanta has to lose the next three games and we have to win the next three games," said New York coach Mike Woodson. "That's the only way we got to get in. We had to grind this one out. It was a total team effort."
Toronto, meanwhile, clinched the Atlantic Division for the second time in franchise history and its first since the 2006-07 season with Brooklyn's loss to Atlanta.
DeMar DeRozan paced the Raptors with 26 points, Kyle Lowry tallied 25 and Jonas Valanciunas dropped in 14 points with a career-high 21 rebounds.
The two teams couldn't distance themselves from one another in the first half, with Toronto holding a five-point edge for the largest margin in the opening 24 minutes.
Lowry buried a 3-pointer with 33.8 seconds left in the first to give the Raptors a 26-24 lead entering the second. Valanciunas made a layup late in the second that pushed Toronto's lead to 46-41. Anthony followed with a pair of free throws, then tipped in Stoudemire's miss to cap the scoring in the second and cut the deficit to 47-45.
The Raptors opened up the third with 3-pointers from Terrence Ross and DeRozan to stretch the margin to eight, but Smith followed a Stoudemire dunk with a trey to tie it at 61-apiece with just under seven minutes remaining.
New York grabbed a one-point edge minutes later after an Anthony jumper before John Salmons hit a 3 that pushed Toronto in front, 71-69.
The Knicks answered with seven straight points to jump back in front, 76-71. Greivis Vasquez and Patrick Patterson then hit 3s before Anthony converted a jumper with 17.9 seconds left to give the Knicks a 78-77 advantage heading to the final period.
New York stretched the lead to eight, 94-86, following an Iman Shumpert layup a the midway point of the fourth. Stoudemire's tranistion dunk two minutes later made it 100-89 in favor of the Knicks.
New York didn't make another field goal from there, but did convert all eight attempts from the free throw line in the final minute to seal the win.
Toronto had a season high-tying 15 3-pointers ... Lowry set the franchise record for 3-pointers in a season, passing Morris Peterson (177) ... New York shot 35-for-73 (47.9 percent) ... The Knicks scored 22 points off of 16 Toronto turnovers.
04/11 22:31:07 ET