We stressed how important it was for the Raptors to win the games they are suppose to win if they are to truly become part of the playoff race. It didn’t happen last night at the ACC. It started with a first quarter in which despite being close made you want to find the remote and see what else was on. It was 17-16 Wizards at the end of the first.
The Wizards would pull away a bit during the second quarter as the Raptors offense was still in a deep freeze after shooting just 33.3% in the first it was not much better in the second. Rudy Gay had been made to disappear by the Wizards. So much so that Andrea Bargnani who had been scoreless in the last two games had more points than him on the night.
Gay would finish with a 1-11 night from the field and just 7 points as Bargnani had just 8 points going 4-11 from the field. Aside from DeMar DeRozan few other Raptors showed up to this rare Monday night affair at the ACC. He had 25 points on the night and Lowry 18 as the only Raptors to reach double digits. Amir Johnson benefited the most from all the Raptor and Wizards misses with 13 rebounds.
The fans had started talking playoffs as the Raptors had climbed their way up to ninth in the east entering the night 4 games back of the idle Milwaukee Bucks who the Raptors will see on the weekend.
It was an uninspired and lacklustre effort on the part of the Raptors losing 90-84 to the Wizards. They did come alive in the second half to score 52 points. They lacked the lockdown defense to go with it as the Wizards would score 50 themselves in the second half.
For long-time Raptor fans they come to expect as typical, just when you start to give the team some credit they come up with a performance like this. Raptors will need to figure it out as they travel to Cleveland for a game tomorrow with the Cavs who are cellar dwellers like the Wizards.
A couple episodes of the Starting 5 coming up for your listening enjoyment in the next 24 hours. Jack Armstrong will be one of the guests and the second will be on of my fellow members of the blogging community as Bryan Colangelo likes to call us.