It may be a lost season for the Toronto Raptors, but establishing a franchise record for consecutive wins may help them feel good about themselves heading into the summer.
Toronto looks to move within two victories of tying that mark when it completes a home-and-home series Sunday night against the New York Knicks, who haven't won at Air Canada Centre in over five years.
The Raptors (30-45) came away with a 102-95 victory over New York (29-47) on Saturday afternoon to win six in a row for the first time since April 2007. They haven't registered seven consecutive victories since a franchise-record nine-game run from March 22-April 9, 2002.
"There's nothing you can do about yesterday and times past," coach Jay Triano said. "I mean we've been frustrated throughout the year, but we're not right now. We've just got to keep playing and try to win as many games as we can."
Andrea Bargnani scored 23 points, Chris Bosh had 17 points and 13 rebounds, and Shawn Marion added 12 points and 13 boards Saturday for the Raptors, who kept their slim playoff hopes alive.
"We keep playing. We don't pay attention to the standings," Bosh said. "We just try to win the next game and they say we're not eliminated yet, so until that day we have to prepare the right way for every game."
The slumping Knicks were eliminated from postseason contention. New York, which hasn't made the playoffs since 2004, has lost four straight and 10 of its last 11 in coach Mike D'Antoni's first season with the team.
"I don't know, I was pretty disappointed that we didn't (make the playoffs) to be honest with you," D'Antoni said. "I just thought too many games would come down to where we could take control of it, 15 or 16 games less than five points, and we just never came up with the big play or the big stops and tonight was just another night."
Al Harrington and Chris Duhon each scored 22 points for the Knicks.
"Once you get a feel of being in the playoffs and playing in the playoff games, that's a feeling that you strive to continue to have," said Duhon, who played in the postseason with Chicago. "I just think these guys deserve it. They need to deserve to understand the different level. You've got to play a different way, so the intensity is higher. It's a lot of fun playing in the playoffs."
The Knicks will be trying to avoid a season high-tying sixth straight road loss and snap a nine-game skid in Toronto.
New York won its first six road games against the Raptors after they entered the NBA in 1995-96 but has since dropped 16 of its last 19 visits to Toronto.
The Raptors, who have won a season-high four in a row at home, have also taken 14 of 19 overall meetings between these Atlantic Division rivals since the start of the 2004-05 season.