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Pascal Siakam leads Raptors to historic rout over Pacers

Kyle Lowry had been keen to come out of the NBA all-star break at top speed.

On Sunday, Lowry set a breakneck pace in the Toronto Raptors’ most lopsided win in franchise history.

Lowry, who’d made his sixth appearance at the all-star game last week in Chicago, had 16 points and 11 assists Sunday, and the Raptors throttled the Indiana Pacers 127-81.

“I’ve never coached or seen anybody play as hard as this guy does in basketball,” Raptors coach Nick Nurse stated afterward. “It’s the ultimate compliment and it rubs off on the other guys, and not only does he do it that way, he plays smart, he knows the coverages, he knows the opponents, he studies film, he gives his body up, right?

Toronto defeated Indiana 127-81 for their 9th consecutive victory at home, sets franchise record for largest margin of victory.

“All those things kind of transfer to the other guys . . . leadership, right?”

Lowry stretched his career-best streak of consecutive double-doubles to six games in the Raptors’ ninth straight victory at Scotiabank Arena. It was also the Raptors’ ninth win in their last 10 outings.

Pascal Siakam added 21 points while Serge Ibaka chipped in with 15 points and 15 rebounds. Matt Thomas finished with 17 points, Terence Davis had 13, Rondae Hollis-Jefferson added 12, and Chris Boucher hauled down 11 rebounds to go with nine points for Toronto (42-15).

Domantas Sabonis and Aaron Holiday had 14 points apiece to top the lacklustre Pacers (33-24), who were missing all-star guard Victor Oladipo (sore lower back).

In a game Nurse called the best start-to-finish performance in recent memory, the Raptors ran roughshod over the Pacers from the opening tip off, holding the Pacers to just four baskets on a woeful 17.4 per cent shooting in the first quarter.

By the time Fred VanVleet launched a running three-pointer with four seconds left in the first half, the Raptors were up by 31 points.

“Flying and executing the coverages, ball was poppin’, and every single guy that went in there was on, ready to go,” Nurse said.

The Pacers’ 32 points at halftime were a season-low for a half by an opponent. The Raptors host the conference-leading Milwaukee Bucks on Tuesday.

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