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Mar 26, 2024 4:04 pm

Hot-shooting Knicks seeking season sweep of Raptors

divincenzo raptors

The host Toronto Raptors must deal with the hot shooting of the New York Knicks’ Donte DiVincenzo on Wednesday night as they try to end their 11-game losing streak.

Donte DiVincenzo made a team-record 11 3-pointers Monday in scoring a career-best 40 points when the Knicks defeated the visiting Detroit Pistons 124-99.

DiVincenzo shot 14-for-23 from the field, including 20 attempts from 3-point range.

He moved within eight of breaking Evan Fournier’s 2021-22 club record of 241 3-pointers for a season.

“Impressive, and he’s been doing it all year,” Knicks coach Tom Thibodeau said. “I thought his teammates helped create good shots for him, he knocked them down and played hard the whole game.”

The Knicks (43-28) have won six of seven.

The Raptors (23-49), meanwhile, lost 96-88 to the visiting Brooklyn Nets on Monday. They have not won since March 3 against Charlotte in Toronto.

The Knicks have won all three meetings between the teams this season.

The Knicks have other players who can give them problems. All-Star guard Jalen Brunson added 28 points for the Knicks on Monday and Josh Hart added his sixth triple-double since January with 11 points, 14 rebounds and 10 assists.

DiVincenzo was cheered on by the crowd as he overtook the previous team record of 10 3-pointers shared by J.R. Smith and Fournier.

“Yes, it’s an amazing feeling having the crowd behind you,” DiVincenzo said, “but also like every time you touch the ball, they’re like, ‘Shoot! Shoot!'”

DiVincenzo moved into third in the NBA in 3-pointers made this season. He had one denied on Monday in the third quarter because he had stepped out of bounds.

“The crowd was speeding me up,” he said. “That emotion where you get like a sliver of space, and the crowd, as soon as you catch the ball, you can hear the crowd.

“Really I’ve said this, it’s the best fans in the league in that moment. It’s a dream of like, ‘Slow down, take your time, and shoot the ball.'”

Julius Randle (dislocated shoulder) missed his 26th consecutive game for the Knicks on Monday.

Former Raptor OG Anunoby (elbow) has also been out. Thibodeau said that Anunoby has done some shooting, but still needs to let the irritation in his elbow “calm down” before returning.

Anunoby was traded to the Knicks in late January. Immanuel Quickley and RJ Barrett, who came to Toronto in the deal, have been out for personal reasons. Both are back with the team and could play soon.

“They’re just now in the process of reconditioning,” Raptors coach Darko Rajakovic said. “We’re going to take it day by day and see, as a group, if (when they are) going to be physically and mentally ready to join the team and play.”

The Raptors will still be missing such key players as Scottie Barnes (hand) and Jakob Poeltl (finger).

Backup center Jontay Porter is out pending a gambling investigation.

“Easily the most change … the most things happening, personal levels, injuries,” Toronto forward Garrett Temple said. “This is easily the, I guess you could say, the craziest season I’ve been a part of in terms of all of these, all of these parts, all of these things happening.”

The Raptors had 23 assists on Monday and have set a team record for a season with 2,086. The previous mark of 2,085 was set in 2018-19.

–Field Level Media

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