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Reply To: NBA • Sunday Service Plays • 2/21/16

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Preview: Memphis At Toronto

When: 6:00 PM ET, Sunday, February 21, 2016
Where: Air Canada Centre, Toronto, Ontario

The Toronto Raptors look to avoid their first three-game losing streak in three months when they return home to take on Memphis on Sunday. The Raptors will be playing their first home game since Jan. 30, ending the longest stretch away from home in franchise history.

A six-game road trip that wrapped around the All-Star break began with three wins in four games, but losses to Minnesota and Chicago have handed the squad a rare losing streak. “If we think we’re going to go anywhere playing like that, we’re kidding ourselves,” Raptors coach Dwayne Casey told reporters after Friday’s 116-106 loss to the Bulls, who shot 51.6 percent. The Grizzlies came out of the break with a 109-104 victory over the Timberwolves, and they’ve taken 11 of their last 14 games overall. Mike Conley had 25 points and seven assists as Memphis won its first game since trading away key reserve Jeff Green and shooting guard Courtney Lee.

TV: 6 p.m. ET, FSN Southeast (Memphis), TSN (Toronto)

ABOUT THE GRIZZLIES (32-22): Chris Andersen and P.J. Hairston – acquired before Thursday’s trade deadline – made minimal impacts against Minnesota while fellow newcomer Lance Stephenson was inactive. Conley, who has scored at least 20 points in three straight games, looks as if he is ready to shoulder the load for a team that also lost center Marc Gasol to a broken foot prior to the break, and veteran Vince Carter has stepped up his game of late. The 39-year-old has recorded four of his seven double-digit games this season since Jan. 30 and his 73-foot buzzer-beater to end the third quarter Friday night was the highlight of a season-high 15-point performance.

ABOUT THE RAPTORS (35-18): Center Jonas Valanciunas scored a season-high 25 points and had a team-high 12 rebounds in Friday’s loss while Kyle Lowry had another solid performance with 27 points and eight assists. The other three starters combined to shoot 8-of-28 from the floor (21 of the shots by DeMar DeRozan). The Raptors have given up 233 points in the last two games, the most they’ve allowed in consecutive contests since Jan. 3-4.


1. Grizzlies PF Zach Randolph had 19 points, 13 rebounds and two blocks to lead his team to a 92-86 win in the previous meeting on Jan. 21, 2015.

2. Memphis has won three straight road games.

3. DeRozan is one victory away from tying Morris Peterson and Chris Bosh (232 apiece) for the most by a player in franchise history.

PREDICTION: Raptors 99, Grizzlies 94