The NBA Roundup: April 16, 2013

For a team that won’t be anywhere near the Playoffs this year, the Toronto Raptors are playing great April basketball. They’ve gone 5-2 so far this month, including wins over Playoff-bound Chicago and, just today, Atlanta. In the only other game today, the Clippers showcased their trademark offensive might in trouncing the Trail Blazers.

Today’s Best:
  •        If only DeMar DeRozan and Rudy Gay could play like this everyday. That dynamic wing duo combined for 52 points on 18-of-31 FG shooting as the only NBA club north of the border got its third straight win.
  •        The Caron Butler of today was reminiscent of the Caron Butler in Washington not too long ago. Butler hit 4 treys on his way to a game-high 22 points as the Clippers remained a Top 4 team out West.

DeMar DeRozan shoots over Kyle Korver as
the Raptors won their third in a row.
(image by David Tulls/AP)

Today’s Worst:
  •        Mike Scott and John Jenkins paired up for 7-of-28 shooting for the Atlanta Hawks. Wait, who are those guys again? Yeah, exactly.

Final Score: Toronto 113, Atlanta 96
Atlanta, GA (Sports Network) - DeMar DeRozan paced five teammates in double figures with 30 points as the Toronto Raptors made easy work of the Atlanta Hawks at Philips Arena on Tuesday night, 113-96. Rudy Gay poured in 22 points for the Raptors, who have won four straight, all against playoff-bound teams. Jonas Valanciunas scored 13 points, Amir Johnson and John Lucas III netted 11 apiece while Kyle Lowry dished out 11 assists. Kyle Korver put up 13 points to lead the Hawks, who fell into a tie for sixth place in the Eastern Conference with the Chicago Bulls with one game remaining in the regular season.

Final Score: LA Clippers 93, Portland 77
Los Angeles, CA (Sports Network) - Caron Butler paced all scorers with 22 points and Chris Paul handed out 11 assists as the Los Angeles Clippers dismissed the Portland Trail Blazers at Staples Center Tuesday night, 93-77. Blake Griffin netted 16 points and DeAndre Jordan tallied 10 points and nine rebounds for the Clippers, who have won six straight games to pull even with the Memphis Grizzlies for fourth place in the Western Conference with one game left in the regular season. Los Angeles, which has won the Pacific Division, is guaranteed at least the fourth seed, but it would have to go on the road to open the first round of the playoffs if it were to finish with a worse record than Memphis. It is also a game behind the Denver Nuggets and holds an outside chance of earning the third seed. Will Barton led the way with 17 points for Portland, which extended its losing streak to 12 games. Joel Freeland added 13 points off the bench, Damian Lillard put up 12 points and eight assists and Victor Claver pitched in 11 points for the visitors.

DeAndre Jordan and Chris Paul share tactics in the Clippers' win over Portland.
(image by Reed Saxon/AP)

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