home 2014-15, Blogs, Game Coverage Wizards at Raptors Pregame: Looking for vengeance

Wizards at Raptors Pregame: Looking for vengeance


Washington (33-20) at Toronto (35-17)

February 11, 2015 at 7:30 PM
Air Canada Centre, Toronto, Ontario
TV: CSNWashington
Radio: 99.1FM

Tale of the Tape

[ezcol_1third]WIZARDS[/ezcol_1third][ezcol_1third][/ezcol_1third][ezcol_1third_end]RAPTORS[/ezcol_1third_end][ezcol_1third]33-20[/ezcol_1third][ezcol_1third]TEAM RECORD[/ezcol_1third][ezcol_1third_end]35-17[/ezcol_1third_end][ezcol_1third]99.8[/ezcol_1third][ezcol_1third]PPG (own)[/ezcol_1third][ezcol_1third_end]105.8[/ezcol_1third_end][ezcol_1third]97.4[/ezcol_1third][ezcol_1third]PPG (opp)[/ezcol_1third][ezcol_1third_end]100.9[/ezcol_1third_end][ezcol_1third]Won 2[/ezcol_1third][ezcol_1third]W/L STREAK[/ezcol_1third][ezcol_1third_end]Won 2[/ezcol_1third_end][ezcol_1third]Won vs. Magic 96-80[/ezcol_1third][ezcol_1third]PREVIOUS GAME[/ezcol_1third][ezcol_1third_end]Won vs. Spurs 87-82[/ezcol_1third_end]

Last time they met was..

January 31, 2015 @ Verizon Center, Washington, DC – Raptors 120, Wizards 116 (ot)
#WizRaptors Tales from the Booth

Last time the Wiz played Raps, Bradley Beal gave us this MJ pose after a 3. The Wizards lost that game, Beal’s out tonight and so this whole opening sentence has been rendered useless.

The Wizards had nosedived into a 16-point deficit by the completion of three quarters before clawing their way back via 10 John Wall points and eight more from Kris Humpries. Meanwhile, on the Toronto side, the Raptors’ shooting percentage plummeted from a scorching 55% clip in the first 3 quarters, to 6-20 in the 4th, fueling the Wizards blazing comeback. A Paul Pierce 3 with 0:25 left in regulation knotted the game at 109.

In the overtime period, Kyle Lowry would help take advantage of several critical missed shots by the Wizards – all OT shots are critical, actually – and score seven of the Raptors 11 points to shun Washington’s pursuit of a comeback.

From the Crystal Ball

by Irfan K

What to Watch: My word how things have changed! Just over a week ago, we wanted the Wizards to win this game so as not to fall behind the Raptors in the head to head. Now? The Raptors have a two game lead on the Wizards, they are 2-0 in the head-to-head, and the Wizards just want to get wins wherever they can get them.

With that said, the last game was a classic. Wizards looked dead, stormed back in dramatic fashion, only to fall short in OT. I expect that loss to drive the Wizards in this game. Look for the Wizards to win all the intangibles: Energy, loose balls, offensive rebounds. The Wizards are going to be playing angry, and with the tremendous Toronto crowd against them, they are going to have an us-against-the-world mentality. This one’s going to be good.

Key matchup: John Wall vs. Kyle Lowry. A lot may have changed since the last time these two met, but the starting point guards have not. So this is still the key match-up. Wall’s explosion and playmaking vs. Lowry’s power and scoring bursts. Both All-Stars will take over portions of this game. That is a given. The All-Star who takes over most, or times his bursts of greatness best, will come out with his team on top.

While we’re here, let’s shamelessly pay homage to this Wall block on Lowry from a year ago.

X-factor: The All-Star Break. You know how when you’re waiting for Spring Break, all you can focus on is how much time you’re going to waste during Spring Break. Every test right before Spring Break, you fail. Every lecture right before Spring Break, you skip. Psychologically, Spring Break starts a few days before Spring Break actually starts. All-Star Break is Spring Break for NBA players. Some party. Some relax. Some vacation. Some go home. But they all enjoy it, and they all look forward to it. I expect the Wizards to come out seeking vengeance against Toronto. If I’m wrong, it’s because they were looking forward to Spring Break too soon.

Fun factor(s): The Toronto crowd. It’s not just Drake. This crowd is GREAT. They are smart, they are passionate, they are loud, and most importantly, they are ALL Toronto fans. You will know which possessions are huge, which players are about to make a play, or how bad (good for the Wizards!) a call was just by their decibel level.

I do however have one question for Toronto fans. I like, #WeTheNorth, but how do you not go with #WinterIsComing?!? Do people in Toronto hate Game of the Thrones? Are there Copyright ramifications? Can you even watch Game of Thrones in Canada? (Seriously, tweet me your answers @aIRFAN_2, I’m curious).

Prediction: Wizards come out ready for vengeance. Raptors come out ready for Spring Break. #WeTheNorth gives their team enough energy for another great game, but for this game, the #WizardsAreComing.

we are Hoop District

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