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22.05.2019 Europe

Toronto Raptors beat Milwaukee Bucks to level Eastern Conference showdown

By Paul Myers - RFI
Reuters/John E Sokolowski
MAY 22, 2019 EUROPE

The Toronto Raptors swept past the Milwaukee Bucks 120-102 on Tuesday night to level the NBA Eastern Conference finals at 2-2. Kyle Lowry led the Raptors with 25 points as they followed up their triumph in game three with a second straight home win.

Game five in the best-of-seven series takes place on Thursday in Milwaukee and the winner will take on the Western Conference champions, the Golden State Warriors.

They reached their fifth straight NBA Finals after a 4-0 blitz of the Portland Trailblazers.

Raptors' star player Kawhi Leonard appeared as if he was carrying an injury during the match.

But he remained on the court. "We understood Kawhi wasn't going to be at 100 percent," Lowry said. "We knew everybody had to step up and stay focused on the game plan."

Lowry scored 18 points in the first-half as the Raptors came back from an early seven-point deficit to lead 32-31 after one quarter.

Norman Powell added 18 points off the bench. Serge Ibaka and Gasol scored 17 apiece.

Khris Middleton, with 30 points, was the highest scorer for the Bucks who lost their second straight game for only the second time this season.

"They did what they did at home and we did what we're supposed to do at home," said Lowry.

"Our back's against the wall still. We're going into a hostile environment. They're going to be ready to go."