Seguin’s third-period power-play goal leads Stars over Canucks 4-2

Ryan Miller stopped 32 shots in his 12th start in the last 13 games for Vancouver, which finished winless on its five-game homestand (0-3-2).Seguin snapped a 2-2 tie at 9:07 of the third on the Stars’ only power play, blasting a one-timer past Miller for his 24th of the season after Dallas zipped the puck around the Canucks’ zone.Faksa then took advantage of a turnover by Troy Stecher to bury his 11th past a helpless Miller at 15:31 as the Stars improved to 12-0-1 in their last 13 games against Vancouver.“It’s frustrating,” said Hutton. It just got away from us towards the end.”Notes: Dallas is 13 points back of the St. “I was able to settle down a bit. Dallas Stars head coach Lindy Ruff said he needed more from his leaders after a string of demoralizing losses.Tyler Seguin and Jamie Benn stepped up to the challenge.Seguin scored the go-ahead goal on a power play in the third period and Benn had a spirited fight as Dallas snapped a three-game slide with a 4-2 victory over the Vancouver Canucks on Thursday. Kari Lehtonen made 26 saves, while John Klingberg also added two assists.Sven Baertschi and Ben Hutton replied for the Canucks (28-33-9). “The guys did a great job responding,” said Seguin. “Our compete level was a lot higher, just our will.“We were missing it the last few games.”With both teams fading in the Western Conference playoff race, the Stars came into Rogers Arena having been outscored 17-4 in their last three games, including a 5-1 loss to the San Jose Sharks and a 7-1 demolition at the hands of the Edmonton Oilers.“It’s no secret we were embarrassed by the last two games and the season in general,” said Dallas centre Jason Spezza, who had two assists.Ales Hemsky, Esa Lindell and Radek Faksa had the other goals for the Stars (28-32-10). “We want to win, especially here in our home rink in front of our fans. The Stars are 6-0-1 in their last seven games at Rogers Arena dating back to the 2012-13 season. “It sends a message to the team that the fight is still on. … One mistake here, one mistake there and it’s two points for the other team and not us.”Dallas led 2-1 in the second period when Canucks defenceman Nikita Tryamkin laid a solid hit on Benn, who went after the hulking six-foot-seven, 265-pound Russian. The big defenceman had both his initial shot and rebound chance stopped by Lehtonen before the puck popped into the slot to Baertschi, who bagged his 17th at 13:27.The Stars nudged back in front with 7.2 seconds left in the period when Lindell scored his sixth on a wrist shot that beat Miller from well out.“I probably wasn’t as sharp as I’d like to be early — made a couple poor decisions — but after that I thought we were playing pretty well in the second,” said the 36-year-old Miller, who started his fifth straight game. Both players went to their respective locker-rooms after the dust up, but the six-foot-two, 210-pound Benn didn’t return for the third because of an upper-body injury.It wasn’t clear if the injury to Benn, who will be re-evaluated Friday, happened during the fight or earlier in the game.“I like it,” Ruff said of seeing his captain and second-leading scorer drop the gloves. that’s a pretty big dude he fought, so it was a heck of a battle.”Hutton then tied the score on the power play to snap a 1-for-33 stretch on the man advantage with 0.3 seconds left in the period, but the Canucks were unable to build any moment from there.Dallas grabbed a 1-0 lead at 8:41 of the first when Hemsky, who has missed 59 games this season with hip and groin injuries, swooped past Hutton and beat an indecisive Miller to a loose puck to score his first goal since March 24, 2016.Vancouver responded when Reid Boucher, playing in his 100th NHL game, fed a slick pass to a pinching Tryamkin. You’ve got to win games and play hard.“It starts with the leaders of the team … Louis Blues for the second wild-card spot in the West, while Vancouver is 14 points adrift.

Brier finalist Kevin Koe defeats John Epping at Elite 10 curling event

Epping, from Toronto, fell to 1-2 at the Grand Slam competition.Earlier, Switzerland’s Peter De Cruz (3-1) moved into first place in Pool A with a shootout win over Brad Jacobs (2-1) of Sault Ste. The playoffs start Saturday and the final is set for Sunday morning. Kevin Koe defeated John Epping 3-up for his first win at the Elite 10 curling competition at the Port Hawkesbury Civic Centre.Koe, from Calgary, won four of the last five ends Friday afternoon to improve to 1-2 at the match play event. Stoughton leads Pool B at 3-0 while Morris fell to 2-1.Two more draws were scheduled for later Friday. Marie, Ont. John’s skip Brad Gushue. Both teams have locked up playoff spots.Winnipeg’s Jeff Stoughton also reached the playoffs when his team of select players posted a 2-and-1 win over John Morris of Vernon, B.C. Koe reached the final of the Tim Hortons Brier last week before falling to St.

Manchester City in need of large-scale refresh – starting at the back

It has the coach, certainly the finest of his generation, now Guardiola needs the squad to deliver on his vision – starting at the back.The frailties in City’s defence were badly exposed on Wednesday when Monaco’s 3-1 victory carried the French leader into the Champions League quarter-finals.“It is a massive disappointment,” right back Bacary Sagna said. Approaching the end of the first decade under Abu Dhabi ownership, City is in need of another large-scale refresh in the dressing room. We gave them too much respect and … we put ourselves in danger.”Sagna is one of two defenders to start in Monaco who is in his 30s and without a contract at the end of the season. We did show passion in the second half [in Monaco] but it is not enough. Liverpool plays host to City on Sunday in fourth place, with Guardiola’s City just a point ahead in third.“I expect a reaction from the team,” Sagna said. “I expect more desire, to show more passion. Arsenal is demoralized, facing uncertainty over Arsène Wenger’s future, and five points behind Liverpool but it does have two games in hand.Chelsea is coasting to the title and could go 13 points clear of Tottenham by beating Stoke on Saturday, with the second-placed London club not in action until Sunday against Southampton. “We forgot to play in the first half, we forgot to fight as a team, defend as a team, and press as a team. The Premier League title bid faded long ago, falling off the pace after the team was the season’s early front-runner.Liverpool also expected to be challenging for the title, not slugging it out with City just to stay in the top four Champions League places. We have to recover because it was quite a difficult game and then we have to think about Liverpool.”Don’t discount Arsenal from forcing either Liverpool or City from the Premier League’s top four. Far from elevating Manchester City to European elite status, the team has regressed in Pep Guardiola’s first season in charge.While Guardiola has time to turn it around, many of his players won’t. The striker lost his place after 19-year-old Gabriel Jesus burst into the team with a flurry of goals two months ago.Aguero, whose goals clinched City’s first Premier League title in 2012, regained his place in the starting lineup only in February when Jesus sustained a likely season-ending injury.The only prospect of silverware for Guardiola is in the FA Cup, in which City faces Arsenal in the semi-finals. It’s the same situation for Pablo Zabaleta, who remained on the bench as City’s pursuit of a first European Cup ended in the round of 16.City is also leaking too many goals with Guardiola’s biggest gamble – signing former Barcelona goalkeeper Claudio Bravo and sending Joe Hart on loan to Italy – backfiring.The defence shouldn’t bear the brunt of the blame, since it was Guardiola who ordered the attacking approach in Monaco, where City had a 5-3 lead to protect from the first leg while facing one of the most formidable attacks in France.“We changed the system and it worked quite well, we managed to create more chances,” Sagna said, “but unfortunately we didn’t score [enough].”And that casts further doubt on the future of Sergio Aguero. These will be anxious days for aging members of the City squad who will sense the looming end of careers with a club they helped to transform.

‘Evolved’ Julien enjoying greater pool of talent in second stint with Habs

“When you replace a coach in midseason, you have to make sure you get someone you know and trust.”Running down the names, the 2002-03 Habs roster doesn’t look half-bad: Doug Gilmour, Joé Juneau, faceoff wizard Yanic Perreault, defensive stalwart Stéphane Quintal, in-their-prime Saku Koivu and Andrei Markov, a young Mike Ribeiro.Then you look at the age column, and – well, sensitive eyes might want to avert their gaze.The 39-year-old Gilmour was one of 13 players on the wrong side of 30. It has never left.In those years, André Savard worked in the Sens’ front office, which matters because he both played with and coached Julien in the Nordique’s organization.Savard was appointed the Habs’ player-personnel director in 2000 and later replaced Réjean Houle as GM.By then Julien was in the AHL with Hamilton, where he coached a losing team for the first time. It was an eye-opening, formative experience.When the 2002-03 season started the situation was less than ideal. “I was a rookie, I didn’t speak any English … everything was a new world for me. After his singularly weird ouster after 79 games behind the New Jersey Devils bench – three games before the playoffs – he got a call from then-Boston Bruins GM Peter Chiarelli, another National Capital-area guy.When he was let go by Boston earlier this year, the prospect of moving his family back to his old stomping ground – Montreal is an easy drive to his parents’ and siblings’ houses – the allure was immense.He returns for a second stint a wizened, more experienced version of the coach – mostly positive, occasionally shouty, perenially demanding – he’s always been.“I don’t know if there’s a lesson” from his initial tenure, Julien said after being hired. Senators, of the Central Junior Hockey League Junior A circuit. Suffice it to say, Julien has a broadly similar but updated and improved philosophy relative to the Bulldogs of yore (in Plekanec’s first season they finished first overall and reached the championship final).There is ample evidence of his influence after 12 games in charge, eight of them victories.The penalty killing is vastly improved, zone exits are far crisper and defensive-zone coverage is beginning to round into shape.“I feel like we’re trending in the right direction,” captain Max Pacioretty said this week after a hard-fought loss to the Chicago Blackhawks. “But it doesn’t mean much if you don’t win.”Oh, about that.This time around Julien has tangible, metallic evidence that his plan works: a Stanley Cup ring (presumably kept in the same drawer as the two Olympic and one World Cup gold medals).If there is a signal difference between then and now, that’s it.Julien is the same height and within shouting distance of his weight in 2002 – he joked that his old coaching tracksuit still fits, if a little more snugly – and if it seems as though his stature has grown, it’s a function of his considerable reputation.Success confers authority.Although he has done a lot of winning since his first NHL coaching shot, which was marred by a lockout season and ended after a front-office shuffle, it’s not exactly a foreign concept to him.Julien, a roofer’s son who grew up just east of Ottawa, has enjoyed success since he first picked up a whistle.Maybe it’s a family thing. He’s evolved like every coach, but I do get flashbacks,” Plekanec laughed. “But they happen.”Armed with a five-year contract beyond this season that pays him a rumoured $5-million a year, Julien can afford to be patient.But he’s also got more to work with than he did 14 years ago.Instead of Richard Zednik and Jan Bulis, Julien now has Max Pacioretty, Alexander Radulov and Alex Galchenyuk.Instead of Craig Rivet on the top defensive pair, he has Shea Weber.Jose Theodore had an MVP season in 2001-02 and it would require a lengthy and exhausting search to find a corner of the hockey world where he is rated more highly than Carey Price.Julien says he doesn’t remember much of his first NHL game as a head coach other than it was a loss.There is a symmetry to the fact he made his Montreal return just in time to coach his 1,000th.As it happens the parallel extends completely – it was also a loss.Few sports clubs do tributes like the Habs, but instead of a live pre-game ceremony to mark the occasion, Julien asked that it be taped earlier.“I didn’t want to be the centre of attention,” he said.An admirable sentiment, but given the man’s track record it’s a bit late for that. The fellow in charge of personnel decisions was Pierre Dorion, now general-manager of the honest-to-God NHL Senators. The two remain close.After that came a call from the Hull Olympiques, the major-junior team, who he took to a Memorial Cup championship, and a stint with Hockey Canada’s under-20 program.That’s when the Julien blip first showed up on the Team Canada radar. The team’s affiliation was split between the Habs and the Edmonton Oilers, who had hired Julien two seasons previously.He built it into a powerhouse and when Savard was trying to reverse the Habs’ fortunes he turned to his old teammate, at the cost of a fifth-round draft pick (Oilers brass initially asked for a third-rounder).“I thought he had that presence and the patience that you need to coach at this level,” said Savard, who now scouts for the New Jersey Devils. 14 – to replace Michel Therrien, the man he also stepped in for at midseason in 2002-03 – the 34-year-old had a stronger basis for comparison than just about anyone else in the room (Russian defenceman Andrei Markov is the only other holdover from the first Julien era).“Hockey-wise there are several things that are different. The Czech kid reported to the AHL in the fall of 2002, yet another teenager who needed directions and a map to find his own defensive zone.So his coach, barely a decade removed from his playing days as a canny, if comparatively leaden defenceman, got the sketch pad out.Eventually, Tomas Plekanec would grow into perhaps the most unsung two-way centre in the NHL. “He communicated really well with the players, and he’s a teacher, so that part is very similar.”In other words: comparable, but not quite the same.Hockey players are hesitant to discuss the nitty-gritty of game plans and overall system strategy, so there were no grand revelations from Plekanec. “It’s more about experience.”By which he means his decade in Boston and the years comparing notes and ideas with pillars of the coaching world – Mike Babcock, Joel Quenneville, Ken Hitchcock, Barry Trotz – at international tournaments.Julien has always been an inquisitive and analytical thinker, his Xs and Os stack up to anyone’s and he devours stats and scouting reports.After a recent game he alluded to the opponent being tops in the league in scoring chances off the rush (fact-check: true).Earlier this month, he talked unabashedly about his penalty-killing strategy: this is a confident coach who understands knowing what’s coming isn’t the same as stopping it.While Julien can be fiery when the occasion demands, he keeps the negativity for the officials.After praising his team following the Chicago game this week, a 4-2 loss, he was asked about the performance of defenceman Alexei Emelin, whose wretched play over the past two weeks has weighed down the Montreal blueline like a 230-pound anchor.“It doesn’t matter what I say here, what matters is what I do inside that dressing room … every mistake, if you want to put it that way, is unacceptable in this game,” he said. By January of 2006, Julien was out of a job.Ottawa connections have been a unifying thread in Julien’s career. He pretty much taught me everything,” the Montreal Canadiens forward said.The ‘he’ in question is Claude Julien.When Plekanec’s former Hamilton Bulldogs mentor returned to the fold on Feb. His older brother Rick would later become a celebrated minor-hockey coach.After a peripatetic junior and minor-league playing career – he played 14 NHL games (point total: one assist) with the Quebec Nordiques – Julien returned home for good in 1992.Within 18 months he would join the staff of the Ottawa Jr. Within a year, 10 of them would either be retired or playing in Europe.This is the hockey flotsam that greeted Julien when he walked into an NHL dressing room as a coach for the first time.Not long after came a season-killing nine-game losing streak during which Gilmour would be flipped to the Toronto Maple Leafs.The next year, the Habs squeaked into the playoffs and upset the heavily favoured Boston Bruins before bowing out against the eventual Cup champion Tampa Bay Lightning.A year after that the NHL season was scrapped amid the acrimony of a labour dispute.

Stampeders’ great Ezzrett ‘Sugarfoot’ Anderson gave football fans a show

The son of Arkansas plantation workers, Sugarfoot Anderson represented his adopted home with dignity and kindness. (The first Great Migration began decades earlier when six million blacks left their rural roots and moved into urban centres to the north and west.)In California, Mr. (For extra fun, Mr. said he was fine as long as no one laid a hand on him.Mr. That helped him enroll at Kentucky State University, where he honed his skills as a fierce two-way player, a receiver on offence, a sure tackler on defence and the punter on special teams.His family was part of what is called the Second Great Migration, an event in which an estimated five million African-Americans left the South during the start of the Second World War in 1941 and relocated north and west. was a talented baseball player. He played the tight-end position where he could put his speed and size-15 feet to good use, which first earned him the name Sugarfoot. Anderson Sr. He held down many roles as a labourer, a jazz drummer with a group called the Bluenotes, a Hollywood actor and a good friend of Jackie Robinson. One of his teammates was a man destined for fame in another sport – Jackie Robinson.Sugarfoot met Mr. Mayer. As proof of his popularity, he once showed a reporter some of his prized possessions – birthday greetings from former Alberta premier Ralph Klein and former prime minister Jean Chrétien. He always kept his Screen Actors Guild card active in case an offer came in.As for his career with the Stampeders, Mr. Strode, who had found steady employment portraying a slave or African warrior. He could catch passes and gain critical yards at a time when the Canadian Football League wasn’t as pass happy as it is today. would throw out runners trying to steal second base while he comfortably sat in his rocker.)The first big moment in young Mr. Years later he said the book’s pictures had filled him with possibilities, that there was a whole other world out there waiting to be explored. And dozens of photographs of Sugarfoot with celebrities from the world of politics, sports and entertainment.John Anderson, one of Sugarfoot’s three sons, remembers the day Bob Hope came to the house. Born in February, 1920, in Nashville, Ark., he grew up on a plantation where his father and mother Florence both worked picking cotton. If he liked you, really liked you, he would take you for a ride in his prized 1955 Oldsmobile and show you the sights. His statistics over six seasons included 142 catches, 2,020 yards and 10 touchdowns.His fondest memory was returning to Calgary after losing the 1949 Grey Cup in Toronto and seeing 60,000 fans, almost half the city’s population, gathered at the train station to welcome the team home. In the Andersons’ case, they went all the way to California. And he knew my dad [from Sugarfoot playing for Hope’s L.A. Anderson Jr. He was a football player and yet so much more than that. As part of the Monarchs’ show, Mr. Anderson would point out buildings he had helped construct as an employee of Consolidated Concrete.One time, Mr. Anderson slipped in a cassette tape and the two men listened to some cool jazz introduced by a smooth-talking DJ.“He told me it was him,” Mr. He was predeceased by his son Vaughn in 2015 and his first wife Virnetta (Nelson) Anderson in 2006. She was the first black woman to serve as a Calgary city councillor, 1974-77.To submit an I Remember: obit@globeandmail.comSend us a memory of someone we have recently profiled on the Obituaries page. Anderson Sr. He plucked it from the water and learned to read. Anderson appeared in more than 30 films, including The Snows of Kilimanjaro, Samson and Delilah and The Story of Seabiscuit with Shirley Temple and Barry Fitzgerald. “He called himself the Mayor of Melody.” And the Mayor’s sign-off summed up how Sugarfoot lived and loved: “A smile is worth a million dollars, but it doesn’t cost a cent.”Ezzrett Anderson Jr. “Sugarfoot was the most interesting, knowledgeable man I’ve ever known. Anderson had died].”Mr. [In baseball,] if Jackie wanted to steal second, with or without a signal, he stole it,” Mr. It made Mr. That was where he ran his Royalite gas station and wore a tie and a service jacket with his name on it. Robinson through a mutual friend, Woody Strode, who would eventually join Kenny (Kingfish) Washington as the first two black players to sign with the post-Second World War NFL. “I’d just sit back and listen to him talk about all kinds of stuff. Anderson, with his jersey number 00, was an instant fan favourite. Anderson joined the Stampeders in 1949 and played until 1954. He couldn’t go out for dinner without being recognized or asked for his autograph. Laurent. Anderson Jr.’s life occurred when he saw a book floating down a river. Dons],” Mr. Anderson Jr. Then the accolades started rolling in. “They wouldn’t throw him the ball [during practice]. He stood 6-foot-4 and weighed 210 pounds. I cried like a baby when I heard [Mr. could remember back to the penniless days of his childhood. Please include I Remember in the subject field. You didn’t say hello too hard for him.”Mr. Anderson Sr. Anderson leaves his sons John and Barry along with his wife Anne English. In the mid-1940s, Sugarfoot played in the All-America Football Conference, a minor pro circuit just a notch below the National Football League.He was a member of the Los Angeles Dons, who were owned by actor Don Ameche, entertainers Bing Crosby, Bob Hope and movie producer Louis B. attended Langston High School in nearby Hot Springs and was a star football player. came of age. He reminded me of my dad. Mr. He was on the construction crew that made it happen. Many more remember how quick he was to share a story, a smile or a helping hand.”Many others remembered him the same way.“Every time I came to Calgary he’d pick me up at the airport,” Mr. He was a member of the barn-storming Negro League Kansas City Monarchs, featuring legendary pitcher Satchel Paige. “Off the field, he was hyper. Shivers recalled. Mr. Anderson did for Calgary. He’d try to sit at the same table with the guys and they’d get up and leave. They treated him like he was an animal or something … In Calgary, some people called me ‘darky’ but they just didn’t know better.”While he was playing football in L.A., Sugarfoot was also earning a living as a movie actor thanks to Mr. He was added to the Stampeders’ Wall of Fame at McMahon Stadium in 1990 and inducted into the Alberta Sports Hall of Fame in 2010.Soon after Sugarfoot’s death, CFL commissioner Jeffrey Orridge issued a statement that read: “Some of our fans remember the tremendous on-field quickness that earned him his nickname. Shivers got plenty of car rides with Sugar behind the wheel and, as always, Mr. Along the way, the two men talked of their experiences as black athletes in a white society.“Jackie told me what really bothered him was how his teammates treated him,” Mr. Mr. A portrait that was presented to him by former prime minister Louis St. Before that, Sugarfoot was a Hollywood Bulldog in the Pacific Coast Football League. See that office building? Mr. Robinson went on to break baseball’s colour barrier by playing for the Brooklyn Dodgers. Anderson said. Before leaving home, he learned from watching his father, a tolerant man who would bear the brunt of taunts and name calling without so much as raising an eyebrow. And over there, that was where Mewata Stadium stood its ground as home field to the Calgary Stampeders, the place where Ezzrett Anderson lived up to his nickname Sugarfoot with some of the sweetest moves local football fans had ever seen.And those weren’t the only things Mr. Robinson was a dynamo on the football field and would demand the ball if he felt others were getting too much attention.“If Kenny Washington threw Woody three passes, Jackie wanted five. “He was the grand marshal of the Calgary Stampede parade [1963]. would catch while sitting in a rocking chair behind home plate. Shivers said. He’d drive a car fast … He was a hopped-up guy and he’d tell you, too. He never left Calgary and never played for another CFL team.Sugarfoot said in a 2013 Globe and Mail interview that Mr. Anderson Sr. Anderson said. See that street corner? Anderson said.It got to the point where most everyone in Calgary knew Sugarfoot. He was a man of the people, black and white, and his death on March 8 of heart failure was met with sadness and appreciation for all he did in his 97 years.“When [his wife] Anne [English] and son Barry called me that day, I said, ‘I don’t want to hear it,’” former Stampeders’ personnel director Roy Shivers said from his Las Vegas home. A blue camel-hair hat signed by former heavyweight boxing champion, Joe Louis. They were life lessons.”Mr. People liked him and he genuinely liked them back. Paige would pitch and Mr. Strode also played for the Stampeders and won the 1948 Grey Cup.Mr. After winning the World Series in 1955, he flew to Calgary where he was picked up in Sugarfoot’s new Oldsmobile and driven to Lake Louise. Anderson wonder what the reaction would have been had the Stampeders won for the second year in a row.When he retired from football, Sugarfoot’s star lost none of its brilliance and his presence knew no boundaries.

Ceciliani leads offensive charge as Jays beat Phillies 7-5

Darrell Ceciliani hit a grand slam and a run-scoring triple to lead the Toronto Blue Jays to a 7-5 victory over the Philadelphia Phillies on Friday in Grapefruit League action.Ceciliani was 2-for-4 with a total of five runs batted in for the Blue Jays (6-12).Troy Tulowitzki, on a single in the third inning, and Ezequiel Carrera, on a fifth-inning bases-loaded walk, drove in the other Toronto runs. Bo Schultz got the win after pitching 2/3 innings in relief.Aaron Nola took the loss after allowing four runs through 4 2/3 innings. Howie Kendrick hit a two-run shot for the Phillies (9-10) and Aaron Altherr also went deep.Marco Estrada allowed three runs – two earned – walked two and struck out two through 3 2/3 innings.

Toronto Wolfpack hold on for 30-26 win over London Broncos

Jarrod Sammut had two tries and three conversions for London, with William Barthau, Kieran Dixon and Elliot Kear also scoring tries. The Broncos were expected to present the stiffest test yet for the Wolfpack, rugby league’s first transatlantic team. The Toronto Wolfpack weathered a late charge from the London Broncos and held on for a 30-26 victory Friday in the fourth round of rugby league’s Ladbrokes Challenge Cup.Captain Craig Hall led Toronto’s offence, scoring a try and kicking five conversions.Liam Kay, Jack Bussey, Jonny Pownall and Rhys Jacks also scored tried for the Wolfpack, who improved to 4-0 in Challenge Cup and Kingstone Press League 1 competition. While no longer a member of the elite Super League, the London team stands fourth in the second-tier Championship with a 4-2-0 record.After a London try started the second half, the Wolfpack responded with a pair of tries to go up 30-12.Toronto returns to action March 26 against the Keighley Cougars in a League 1 match.

Fourth-quarter surge lifts Raptors past Pistons

You can’t miss that many shots, turn the ball over 13 times and expect to win.“I’m only surprised it was a close game for three quarters.”Both teams struggled offensively in the first half, posting matching 34.1 shooting percentages. “We know that defence will carry over into offence, and once we started getting stops, we were locked in. “We didn’t shoot the lights out, but we played the game the right way on both ends, and when you do that, the shots will eventually fall.”

Toronto wasn’t spectacular offensively down the stretch, hitting seven of 14 shots, but it held the Pistons to one field goal in the final 9:31.“All of that was defence,” said Norman Powell, who played the entire fourth quarter, mostly guarding Kentavious Caldwell-Pope. DeMarre Carroll had 10 points for the Raptors.Toronto jumped out to a 53-46 lead early in the third, but the Pistons rallied to go ahead 59-58 on Caldwell-Pope’s 3-pointer. Everyone has made a run, and with 13 games left, I know we are bound to make one before it is over.” That makes it easy on the other end of the floor.”Serge Ibaka had 17 points and eight rebounds, while DeMar DeRozan added 14 points, eight rebounds and six assists for Toronto, which won for the second time in five games.Reggie Jackson had 20 points for Detroit, which lost its third in a row and dropped to ninth in the Eastern Conference. The Pistons hit three of 20 3-pointers against the Raptors, with Caldwell-Pope going 1 for 9.“No one is trying to miss shots out there, but we can’t hit a thing right now,” Van Gundy said. Jon Leuer’s tip in at the buzzer gave Detroit a 66-60 lead going into the fourth quarter.The Pistons moved the lead to nine in the opening minutes of the fourth, but made one of their last 14 shots and missed the final 10.“We just have to put in the work and shoot with confidence,” Jackson said. “We are not panicking. “We’re missing uncontested shots. Corey Joseph hit a pair of free throws with 1.1 seconds left in the half to give Toronto a 40-38 lead.Jackson led the Pistons with 11 points, while Drummond had 15 rebounds. “Our offence was just nowhere to be found.”In Detroit’s losing streak, they have shot 32 per cent outside the paint, including 30.4 per cent against Toronto. Andre Drummond had 22 rebounds, but only had eight points before fouling out in the fourth quarter.“I thought we played a strong defensive game until the last few minutes,” Pistons coach Stan Van Gundy said. The Toronto Raptors spent 39 minutes trying to get their game into gear Friday night.When they did, though, it went very well.The Raptors trailed the Detroit Pistons 72-63 with 9:13 to play, but finished the game with a 24-3 run to post a comfortable 87-75 victory.“The basketball gods are good to you when you play hard,” Raptors coach Dwane Casey said.