NBA Preview from The Sports Network
Wednesday, April 3rd
(All times Eastern)
Washington Wizards (28-46) at Toronto Raptors (27-47), 7 p.m.
(Sports Network) - The Washington Wizards will try to build on their two-game
winning streak on Wednesday night when they visit the Toronto Raptors at Air
The Wiz moved their home winning streak to eight games Tuesday with a 90-86
victory over the Chicago Bulls, a team in the thick of things in the Eastern
Conference playoff race.
"This was, I thought, a really positive step again for us in learning and
moving in the direction we want to go," said Washington coach Randy Wittman.
"We didn't particularly, I think you can ask any of our players in there, play
our 'A' game, yet we gutted a win out. We gutted a win out and (over) 82 games
you're not going to have your 'A' game and to be a good team and move in the
direction we want to move in, you have got to find a way to win when you don't
have that and defensively that was tonight."
The Wizards held the Bulls to 37 points in the second half and to 39 percent
shooting from the field.
John Wall was once again spectacular with 27 points, nine assists and eight
rebounds. A.J. Price netted 13 off the bench and Nene, Emeka Okafor and Trevor
Ariza all had 10 apiece.
Bradley Beal aggravated his knee injury and didn't play full minutes.
Washington has lost three in a row on the road, but, on Sunday, the Wizards
topped the Raptors in D.C. The Wiz won that one by 17, but the Raptors will be
out for revenge.
Toronto has been awful of late. The Raptors are 4-14 in their last 18 and 1-7
over their last eight. They've lost two in a row, including a home setback to
the Detroit Pistons on Monday.
Jose Calderon returned to Toronto and was instrumental in the Pistons 108-98
Monday's loss officially knocked the Raptors out of the playoffs.
"It hurts," said Raptors head coach Dwane Casey. "Our goal was to knock on the
doors and get into the playoffs. A couple of weeks ago we saw that light, but
it faded when we could not take care of games against Washington, Cleveland
"Unfortunately it is over now. It hurts."
Rudy Gay led the way with 34 points and Jonas Valanciunas (17) and DeMar
DeRozan (15) also played key roles.
The Raptors were outscored by the Pistons, 33-19 in the fourth quarter.
The Wizards have won two of three this season against the Raptors, including a
game in Toronto.
04/03 10:37:33 ET
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