Newcomer Leonard scores 24 as Raptors beat Cavaliers 116-104
KAWHI Leonard helped the Toronto Raptors extend their success in season-opening games.
Leonard had 24 points and 12 rebounds in his Toronto debut, Kyle Lowry scored 27 points and the Raptors beat the Cleveland Cavaliers 116-104 on Wednesday night, extending their streak of opening-night victories to six.
“I felt good,” Leonard said. “I’m happy we came out and got a win. I came out of the game healthy, so it’s a win-win for me.”
Acquired from the Spurs in a July blockbuster that sent four-time All-star Demar Derozan to San Antonio, Leonard was introduced to a thunderous ovation, the final Raptors starter to have his name announced to the capacity crowd of 19,915.
“It was great,” Leonard said. “They gave me some more energy.”
Leonard played 37 minutes in his first competitive game since January with the Spurs. The two-time NBA Defensive Player of the Year was limited to nine games last season because of a quadriceps injury.
“It’s fun to watch, it’s fun to play with,” said guard Danny Green, who was traded to Toronto along with Leonard. “I’m happy for him, that he’s playing again.”