Butler takes charge as 76ers even NBA series with Raptors
Jimmy Butler of the Philadelphia 76ers handles the ball against Kyle Lowry of the Toronto Raptors during Game Two of the Eastern Conference semifinals of the 2019 NBA Playoffs on April 29, 2019 at the Scotiabank Arena in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
Jesse D. Garrabrant/NBAE via Getty Images/AFP
Butler takes charge as 76ers even NBA series with Raptors
(Agence France-Presse) - April 30, 2019 - 11:27am

LOS ANGELES – Jimmy Butler scored 30 points as the Philadelphia 76ers turned the tables on the Raptors in Toronto on Monday (Tuesday Manila time) with a 94-89 victory that knotted their NBA playoff series at one game each.

The 76ers, beaten 108-95 in the Eastern Conference second-round series opener, thwarted the Raptors' second-half comeback bid and will head home for game three on even terms.

Butler added 11 rebounds and handed out five assists for the Sixers, who led 51-38 at halftime despite 13 first-half turnovers.

The Raptors, who trailed by as many as 19 in the first half, closed the deficit to 61-60 late in the third quarter.

But they missed six of their first seven shots in the final period and the 76ers held on for the win.

Butler scored 12 of his 30 points in the fourth quarter. That included a three-pointer off an assist from center Joel Embiid that put the Sixers up 88-81 with 2:14 to play.

"My team had a lot of faith in me tonight," said Butler, who scored just 10 points in game one. "I told them I had to come out and redeem myself."

Embiid, battling a stomach ailment as well as the nagging knee pain that troubled him in the first round, scored just two baskets. The second couldn't have been better timed as he drove to bank in a shot that put the 76ers up 92-89 with 24.3 seconds remaining.

Toronto's Danny Green then missed a potential game-tying three-pointer and Philadelphia's Tobias Harris grabbed the rebound.

Harris was fouled and sealed the win with two free throws.

Toronto's Kawhi Leonard led all scorers with 35 points. Pascal Siakam added 21 and Kyle Lowry scored 20.

But the five points for Toronto's reserves were dwarfed by the production of Philadelphia's bench: 13 points from James Ennis, 10 from Greg Monroe and three from Jonah Bolden.

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