Wizards Get Another Shot At Raptors
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(AP) — The Washington Wizards haven’t earned many wins this season, but recorded a decisive one at home against the Toronto Raptors last month.
The Raptors turned the tables on the Wizards in lopsided fashion last week.
That loss is part of a four-game skid that Washington will try to end when Toronto visits the Verizon Center on Monday night.
Washington (4-20) ended an 0-8 start with a 93-78 home victory over Toronto on Jan. 10, but fell 106-89 at the Air Canada Centre on Friday.
Friday’s win was the only one in the last four games for the Raptors (8-17), whose comeback attempt in Miami fell short Sunday in a 95-89 defeat. Toronto cut a 15-point deficit to three with 3:23 remaining but missed six of its final eight shots.
“It just shows that we can play with anybody, even the best players in the league,” said swingman DeMar DeRozan, who had a team-best 25 points. That was a challenge for us and we definitely stepped up. It (stinks) that we didn’t get the win, but it just shows what we’re capable of.”
The Raptors will try to bounce back by snapping a three-game losing streak at the Verizon Center. These teams have split their last six overall meetings since the start of last season.
Washington heads into this one after suffering another blowout defeat Saturday. One day after the loss to Toronto, Washington fell behind by 24 points at halftime in its return home en route to a 107-81 defeat to the Los Angeles Clippers.
The Wizards scored just 38 points in the first 30 1/2 minutes Saturday, and were outrebounded 53-32 for the game. Their 17 assists were barely half the Clippers’ total of 32.
“We all should have been embarrassed. We were on our home court – and they came out and did what they wanted,” said starting forward Rashard Lewis, who finished with two points to match his season low. “As a unit, none of us came to play.”
Lewis scores 15 points in last month’s win over the Raptors, when he was one of four Wizards in double figures. Toronto’s leading scorer from that game, Andrea Bargnani, is now out indefinitely with a strained left calf.
Toronto’s bench shined during Friday’s victory over Washington, with Leandro Barbosa scoring 19 points despite dealing with flu-like symptoms. Amir Johnson added 18 points and 13 rebounds, and starting guard Jose Calderon had a season-high 17 assists.
The Raptors topped 100 points for only the third time this season, but have done so only once in their last six visits to Washington. They’ve scored at least 102 in 12 of the last 14 matchups between these teams in Toronto