Lowry guides Raptors past Heat and into Eastern finals


The Toronto Raptors advanced to the conference finals for the first time in their history after eclipsing the Miami Heat 116-89 in game seven of Sunday's NBA play-off decider.

With the Eastern Conference semi-final series deadlocked at 3-3 after the Heat forced a deciding game, Kyle Lowry came up big to help the Raptors earn a showdown with the top-seeded Cleveland Cavaliers.

Lowry earned a well-deserved standing ovation, posting 35 points, nine assists and seven rebounds in Toronto.

With his stellar performance, Lowry became the first player in Raptors history to record back-to-back 35-point play-off games.

DeMar DeRozan added 28 points to help the Raptors continue their best season in franchise history.

With Jonas Valanciunas out with an ankle injury, defence-minded Bismack Biyombo was called into action and provided a double-double via 17 points and 16 rebounds.

Dwyane Wade and Goran Dragic led the Heat with 16 points apiece, but it was not enough to stop the Raptors in front of their raucous home crowd.