(Lake Buena Vista) LAKE In the closing seconds of Monday's game, Jimmy Butler passed Goran Dragic for what could have been the tying basket.
Instead, Fred VanVleet used his speed to deflect the ball and confirm the Toronto Raptors victory.
The Raptors point guard posted a career-high scoring 36 points, leading the Torontonians to a 107-103 victory over the Miami Heat.
His work on defense has been as impressive as that on offense.
“What makes his defensive play unique is that he doesn't look fast on the pitch. He doesn't move up and down the court that quickly, but his speed in sideways movements and the way he moves his feet is amazing, observed Raptors head coach Nick Nurse. He has very good vision, he anticipates well and he is a few times ahead of the games. "
Pascal Siakam contributed to this victory by amassing 22 points while Serge Ibaka amassed 15. Kyle Lowry also did his part with 14 points and eight rebounds for the Raptors (48-18) who have won their last six games, including the first two since the relaunch of the NBA season.
In the loss, Dragic led the Heat's attack (42-25) with 25 points. Canadian Kelly Olynyk scored 17 points, two days after exploding 20 points in the fourth quarter in a 125-105 victory. Butler, who missed Sunday's practice, provided 16 points.
The Raptors, whose game was scheduled for the afternoon because many regions of Canada had a day off Monday, held the lead for most of the game.
They moved away from the Heat with a 20-7 streak in the third quarter that gave them a 17-point priority. The Heat reacted, however, to bring the score 84-79 in favor of the Raptors with a quarter to go.
A three-point basket from Olynyk gave the Heat a three-point lead midway through the fourth quarter, but a three-point basket from Siakam paved the way for a mini Raptors rally.
When Ibaka stuck the ball into the basket with a pass from Lowry, the Raptors were leading by six points with 6:11 left.
The Heat still managed to come within one point of the Raptors with 41 seconds left thanks to a three-point basket from Jae Crowder and a basket from Dragic on a stride shot.
The Raptors missed a few chances, but VanVleet came to play the hero thanks to his defensive brilliance.
“We were changing everything and I was sort of preparing for a breakaway,” VanVleet said of his important game. I saw Jimmy come back, he likes to cut on the sideline, so I was just trying to get it. 'be the surplus player in the basket. I saw Dragic cut so I wanted to beat him to his position and I was able to get my hands on the ball. "
VanVleet's former top was 34 points, succeeding against the New Orleans Pelicans on October 22.
“He (VanVleet) was hitting tough shots. You have to live with these, said Heat player Bam Adebayo. Several of them were widely contested. He made some big plays in the NBA Finals last year. That's what he does. "
Of the 22 NBA teams in the Walt Disney World bubble, the Raptors face the toughest schedule. However, their impressive 107-92 victory over the Los Angeles Lakers, in which the Raptors' defense limited the Lakers to a 35% hit rate on Saturday, seemed to show the Toronto side are not worried.
The Raptors will take over Wednesday against Orlando before crossing swords with the Boston Celtics on Friday. After that, the Raptors will have four classification games left before the playoffs start.