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Raptors down Lakers as Howard tossed on technical
13:00 AEST Mon Jan 21 2013

Toronto guard Jose Calderon scored 22 points and handed out nine assists Sunday as the Raptors handed the Los Angeles Lakers their fifth straight NBA road defeat, 108-103.

The Lakers were without center Dwight Howard for the second half, after he was ejected with 1:18 left in the first half for his second technical foul of the contest.

Howard and Raptors forward Alan Anderson were whistled for a double-technical after they tangled while jostling for position under the basket.

Howard picked up his first technical in the first quarter for arguing for a foul call.

In the second incident, Anderson appeared to initiate contact and jaw with Howard, but after the officials conferred the double-technical call stood.

"I don't want to talk about it," said Howard, who had never been ejected from a game until December 26, when he was tossed for a flagrant foul on Denver forward Kenneth Faried.

"I didn't do anything to get ejected," Howard said. "(Anderson) pulled me. They called a double tech."

Landry Fields added a double-double of 18 points and 10 rebounds for Toronto, who had 18 points from Ed Davis and 14 from Anderson.

"We played well enough this week to win a couple of games, but we didn't," said Raptors coach Dwane Casey, whose team snapped a four-game slide.

"Today, our guys stayed together, followed the game plan and played together as a team."

Kobe Bryant led the Lakers with 26 points but connected on just 10-of-32 from the field and had six turnovers.

Bryant put his shooting woes down to "dead legs" and prescribed ice baths for himself.

"I've just got to rest my legs, man. My shot's just short," he said. "That's on me. I'll take this loss on me, gladly. There's a lot of easy shots, a lot of them, that I should put down. And I will."

Bryant didn't have much time to rest, with the Lakers continuing a three-game road trip on Monday in Chicago.

Pau Gasol added 25 points for a Lakers team that lost their second straight and are languishing in 11th place in the Western Conference and third in their division.

Howard had five points, two rebounds and one assist before he was thrown out of the game.

Toronto leapt to an early lead thanks to a 19-4 scoring run as the Lakers made just two of their first 11 shots.

The Lakers trailed by double digits from there until narrowing the gap to 29-20 going into the second quarter.

Antawn Jamison then opened the second with a 3-pointer to trim the deficit to six points, but Toronto responded with a 15-7 run to regain control.

Los Angeles mounted another challenge and pulled within 51-49 shortly before halftime, but a jump shot by Calderon gave Toronto a four-point halftime lead.

Los Angeles trailed 83-70 going into the fourth quarter and couldn't put together a strong enough challenge to get past the Raptors, who had lost their last four meetings with the Lakers.

"We were down, but we fought back and tried to make it close," Lakers coach Mike D'Antoni said. "Right now on offense the ball seems to be sticking and defensively we're having our ups and downs."


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