John Wall: Drake told me he had the broom for us - Washington Times
“We’ve got to find ways to take (threes) out of the game and make it a reasonable opportunity for us,” Wall said. “And that’s keeping those guys off the three-point line, making them beat us with a lot of twos and one-on-one basketball.”

The Raptors attempted a season-low 18 threes in the Wizards’ 106-98 win Sunday. Toronto went the whole 82-game season without shooting fewer than 21.

Even more encouraging for the Wizards, Toronto made just seven. The Raptors entered Sunday’s contest shooting 44 percent from deep.
RR 
20 hours ago
Raptors look to make up for ‘uncharacteristic’ loss | Toronto Sun
As you might expect, tweaks have been made by both the Raptors and Wizards, momentum shifting from Toronto to Washington as the series moved from the Ontario capital to the U.S. one.

The one constant in the series has been turnovers, that tried-and-true measuring stick in today’s analytics-driven sports world that always separates winners from losers in the post-season, whether it’s basketball or football.

Naturally, some turnovers are self-induced, the result of being sloppy with the basketball or being indecisive.
RR 
20 hours ago
Raptors' success in Game 5 will come by spreading offence around - Sportsnet.ca
"I just try to go out there and be aggressive," he said, sounding a bit groggy barely 12 hours after the Raptors fourth-quarter meltdown Sunday as he tried to make sense of a lost weekend. "Sometimes you can’t give up on it if you miss two shots, three shots in a row. You’ve got to continue to go out there and be aggressive."

It’s easy to dismiss it as ‘hero ball’ – where a player wants to put himself in position to make plays and win games even if they aren’t the winning play, the smart play.
RR 
20 hours ago
The Washington Wizards Play Basketball Like a Degenerate Gambler | Wizards Blog Truth About It.net
For any other team, this would be a problem. Not for these Wizards, though. This is exactly where Washington needed to be, with their backs against the wall. The Wizards stared Teddy KGB in the eyes, paused for a second in faux contemplation of their next move, then pushed all their chips into the middle of the table. Washington ended the game on a 26-10 run, beginning with six points from Beal and – after Beal fouled out with 4:58 remaining – four baskets that were either scored or assisted by John Wall.

Game 4 ended on a high note, with Wall dropping his signature, “This is my city,” and the crowd celebrating on their way out to F Street. But there’s one universal truth in gambling: No matter how high you get, there’s always a bad beat on the horizon. The Wizards saw this first-hand last season when they won two straight home games against the Boston Celtics in convincing fashion, only to get destroyed in the pivotal Game 5.
RR 
20 hours ago
DeMar DeRozan takes share of blame as Raptors regroup | Toronto Sun
“I just think we have to make that adjustment to realize that they’re not blitzing (DeRozan) as much anymore, they’re playing more single coverage,” Wright said of Washington’s switch to a more conservative defensive approach.

The Wizards stopped blitzing DeRozan and Kyle Lowry, which led to many open shots in the first two games, and when Toronto’s players had good chances to fire away, they declined far too often on Sunday.
RR 
20 hours ago
Casey confident Raptors can fix 'uncharacteristic' play - Sportsnet.ca
That he used the word “uncharacteristic” in reference to his team’s recent play six times in the 10-minute session probably tells you something about what he saw over the weekend. About how the Raptors have bafflingly gotten away from what’s made them successful. And why Casey’s confident matters can improve in short order.

“There are things that we can correct,” he said. “Some uncharacteristic things that we’ve been doing.”
RR 
20 hours ago
Woz Blog: Raptors should not be in this spot | Toronto Sun
Serge Ibaka, who has had a strong series, struggled on offence. He missed shots, fumbled passes and just didn’t look crisp. Instead of the usual, longer break between games, there was only one day off and Ibaka seems to be worse with less rest. He still rebounded and defended well, but this wasn’t his best night. 

Jonas Valanciunas fared far worse. The game was simply a disaster for the big man, with some shades of the 2015 Washington sweep swimming to the surface.
RR 
20 hours ago
Drake: Rapper told John Wall Raptors would sweep the Wizards | SI.com
"I told him to be here for Game 3," Wall told reporters according to ESPN. "He told me he was going to be here. He didn't show up. He told me were getting swept. He said he had the broom for us."

The Raptors global ambassador may have bitten off more he can chew, and also set up Kyle Lowry and DeMar DeRozan to deal with his mess. In the two games in Washington, Wall and backcourt mate Bradley Beal combined for 114 points, 34 assists and 10 steals as the Wizards tied the series.
RR 
20 hours ago
It will take more than two Raptors to tangle with Wizards | The Star
The good news was DeMar DeRozan, in the course of the fourth quarter of Sunday’s loss in Washington, became the first player in Raptors history to score 1,000 playoff points. The bad news was he appeared to be determined to score 1,000 more before the buzzer.

DeRozan, in the course of the final seven minutes, launched eight shots, many of them ill-advised. By trying in vain to single-handedly take over a game, he helped give away a winnable one.

“He doesn’t have to do that,” Dwane Casey, the Raptors coach, said after Monday’s practice. “That’s why we changed what we do. That’s why we changed our offence, to make the sure the ball is moving, clicking. And it’s one of those things. Sometimes you fall back into that (one-on-one) mindset. Which, at some point in the shot clock, you have to have that. But not that early in the shot clock.”
RR 
20 hours ago
Bradley Beal isn’t interested in predicting when the referees will blow their whistles - The Washington Post
After the Wizards’ practice Monday, Beal listened closely to the beginning of a question. When the topic of “officiating” came up, Beal’s silent expression said everything.

“He doesn’t want to get fined,” joked a team staffer who was standing near the exchange.

Beal has collected 14 personal fouls through the first four games of this physical and often testy series. While his sixth and final foul Sunday provoked an unexpected rage from the usually calm and collected Beal — the call against him was suspect at best — he has battled against the interpretation of what is and what is not a foul throughout the series.
RR 
20 hours ago
Familiar problems for new Raptors - Article - TSN
They say they’ve changed, that they’re a different team than the one that kept getting in its own way at this time of the year, and for most of the last six months they looked the part. They committed to sharing the ball, altering their shot spectrum and diversifying the offence by empowering their role players and becoming less predictable.

It came together quicker and more effectively than almost anyone imagined. Then, in seven and a half minutes, it all came apart.

Toronto was up by eight points, less than a quarter away from taking a commanding 3-1 series lead over the Wizards, before Washington closed Sunday’s Game 4 on a 24-8 run. The Raptors were, as Dwane Casey put it, frenetic. There was no method to their madness offensively. Any possession that didn’t end prematurely in a turnover likely ate up the bulk of the shot clock until, more often than not, the ball found DeMar DeRozan, who would force up a tough jumper.
RR 
20 hours ago
Raptors' Dwane Casey: 'We let our foot up off the pedal' - Sportsnet.ca
“He and Russell Westbrook are one of the fastest plus one of the most powerful guys when they’re coming at you like a freight train,” Casey said. “I put him up there in the same level as a LeBron James as far as how strong he is, how forceful he is when he’s coming down the floor with the ball.”

Casey went on to say that the Raptors will look to change the personnel in terms of who guards the Wizards’ two all-stars. The Raptors have thrown Kyle Lowry, Delon Wright and OG Anunoby at Wall over the course of the four games thus far, and experimented with Pascal Siakam on Wall for a few possessions in Game 4.
RR 
20 hours ago
10 things I saw from Raptors-Wizards (Game 4) – William Lou – Medium
1. Choke: The Raptors should have won this game, period. There’s no excuse for blowing a 14 point lead, especially after Bradley Beal fouled out on a BS call. They could have ended it in the first half if they weren’t so sloppy and paid for it at the end.
RR 
yesterday
Wizards put top-seeded Raptors in familiar playoff position
Beal was having one of those performances that have become the norm for him in the postseason, a 31-point effort that rallied his team back from a 14-point deficit to give the unlikeliest of eighth seeds a chance to even the series with the top-seeded Toronto Raptors. But for the final five minutes, the Washington Wizards weren’t going to have that sweet stroke from beyond the 3-point arc or that wicked step-back jumper, and John Wall wasn’t going to have his All-Star partner. After Beal addressed the team, Wall told Yahoo Sports, “I looked him in the eyes and said, ‘Damn right, we’re going to win.’ ”

For those unaware of how the Wizards went from being a team that entered the season expecting to become an Eastern Conference power only to bottom out from injuries and funky chemistry, understand that they only know how to operate through anger and adversity. Losing Beal meant that the challenge was going to be that much steeper, the reward that much greater. So, the Wizards capturing a 106-98 win in Game 4 Sunday to even their series with Toronto at 2-2 was only stunning if you haven’t been watching. “It’s how we live,” Markieff Morris said afterward. “It’s how it has to be.”
RR 
yesterday
Toronto Raptors fail to maintain halftime lead in Washington
A game the top-seeded Raptors had led by 11 points at the half -- and by eight with less than eight minutes remaining -- had slipped. Toronto now finds itself tied 2-2, with Game 5 scheduled on Wednesday at the Air Canada Centre against a resurgent Wizards team that stated on Sunday night has identified the formula for knocking off the Raptors. "[We] know what we can do to beat this team," Wizards guard John Wall said from the postgame podium. "We know what we got to do to stop this team."

Wall's confidence is to be admired, and the Wizards deserve praise for a more deceptive offense that lured Toronto into a lousy combination of mismatch basketball, frenzied turnovers and missed opportunities on the offensive end. But whatever strategies Washington deployed effectively on Sunday night, the Raptors' failures in Game 4 were largely self-inflicted.
RR 
yesterday
Raptors' playoff demons resurface in dispiriting Game 4 loss to Wizards | theScore.com
All year, the shorthand for that evolution has been "culture reset" - the fateful ideological phrase that Raptors president Masai Ujiri famously uttered after his team was swept out of last year's playoffs by the Cleveland Cavaliers. The consensus at the time was that Ujiri was hinting at sweeping personnel changes, but what the Raptors ultimately became, with their unchanged coach and largely unchanged roster, made that notion seem downright quaint.

But here we are, four games into the proving ground that is the postseason, and while they've taken a different route to this point and exorcised some demons along the way, the Raptors are right back where they've been in three of the past four years: tied at two games apiece with a statistically inferior, lower-seeded team in the first round. (The other year, you might recall, was the one in which they got swept in the first round by the Washington Wizards, the very team they're now deadlocked with.)
RR 
yesterday
Raptors let golden opportunity slip away in Game 4 against Wizards | Toronto Sun
With Bradley Beal fouled out from the 5-minute mark of the final quarter, the Raptors should have had an advantage but it was the Wizards who looked the more dangerous and composed team through the final stages of the game on their way to a series-tying 106-98 win.

The ball movement and the flowing offence that has been the hallmark of this Raptors team was no where to be found in the final five minutes as Washington outscored Toronto 14-6 in the with Beal cooling his heels on the bench and still steaming over the foul that ended his night.
RR 
yesterday
Crunch time woes leave Raptors looking in the mirror - Sportsnet.ca
“I took some bad shots. That led to them getting out in transition, getting some easy buckets. We put them on the free-throw line. They executed, we couldn’t get a stop, and we couldn’t get a bucket,” DeRozan said. “We’ve just got to watch film, understand what we’ve got to do, and me and [Kyle Lowry] understand how much better we have to be, especially in late game situations.”

A look at the lineup Casey turned to down the stretch, with Lowry, Delon Wright and DeRozan forming a three-headed guard unit, and Serge Ibaka and Jakob Poeltl in the front court, isn’t particularly pretty. That rotation finished with a minus-64.5 net rating in its five crunch-time minutes, getting outscored 12-6 as the Wizards ran away with the game.
RR 
yesterday
Raptors air an old playoff re-run in Game 4 loss to Wizards - Sportsnet.ca
When the Toronto Raptors made their sweeping changes in the off-season a year ago it was because what they were doing on offence wasn’t working in the post-season.

It was to shift DeMar DeRozan away from feeling the burden of having to make every play, or score every time or even wanting to.

Cue the culture reset.

And through the 82-game regular season and a third of two playoffs games, everything was going so well – passing, cutting, shooting threes – that it was hard to consider what might happen if or when the new stuff didn’t work, or hit a rough patch.
RR 
yesterday
With Playoff Beal back, the Wizards are revitalized in playoff series vs. Raptors
Whether that was the catalyst or not, the results followed. Beal poured in 28 points in 10-for-19 shooting with four rebounds, four assists and three steals. He hit four threes, more than he had in the first two games combined.

Beal wasted no time to make an impact scoring the ball. His first points came on a quick burst to the basket where he stopped on a dime, turned around and banked it in. By the end of the first quarter, he had 12 points in 11 minutes.

"I just wanted to be aggressive, get shots that I wanted which is what they were going to force me to take," Beal said.
RR 
yesterday
The Dysfunctional Functionality of the Washington Wizards - The Ringer
“You have to give Washington credit,” Raptors head coach Dwane Casey said over the weekend. “They came out and did what they were supposed to do. I said it before, they are not your typical eighth seed. I do not know what they were predicted in the beginning of the year but they were not eight in our conference, so we have to have that level of respect for who they are.”
RR 
yesterday
Wizards reach their breaking point against Raptors. Then they get it together. - The Washington Post
The game was tied at 92 when Toronto guard DeMar DeRozan stumbled into Beal while going after a loose ball, and an official made what seemed to be a game-changing — no, game-losing — call. If it’s possible to skip furiously, that’s how Beal reacted to receiving his sixth foul, dashing to the scorer’s table in protest and then saying some R-rated words as he ventured back to the bench. Coach Scott Brooks screamed. The Capital One Arena crowd jeered.
RR 
yesterday
Will the new and improved Toronto Raptors please stand up? | The Star
If you watched Toronto’s 122-103 Game 3 loss to the Wizards, you know the answers to all those questions was a shrug and a nod in the affirmative. You also might be of the belief that much of what happened could be cast aside as a one-off. Everything in this first-round playoff series had been going along swimmingly for the Raptors in Games 1 and 2, wherein they shared the ball with the same kind of all-for-one togetherness that turned them into a 59-win team with the second-best regular-season record in the NBA. But everything changed in Game 3. Sure, it didn’t help that the desperate Wizards got epic performances from all-star guards John Wall and Bradley Beal.
RR 
2 days ago
Washington Wizards win Game 3 against Toronto Raptors, led by All-Stars John Wall and Bradley Beal
Wall was determined to come back stronger than ever and lift Washington past that second-round barrier that has stymied this team for so long. But the Wizards treated the regular season like a championship-caliber team that was used to being able to turn it on in the postseason.

The Wizards promptly fell flat on their face in Canada, allowing the Raptors to do things they don't normally do, such as win a Game 1 of a series and take a 2-0 lead.
RR 
2 days ago
NBA fines Wizards' Markieff Morris for role in altercation against Raptors | WJLA
Markieff Morris has been fined $25,000 by the NBA on Saturday for attempting to escalate an altercation and pushing an official during a game against Toronto on Friday night. Morris shoved official Ken Mauer aside when Morris and Toronto's OG Anunoby had to be separated after a near-fight that drew other players less than three minutes into the Wizards' 122-103 victory.
RR 
2 days ago
Toronto Raptors plan to stick with bench mob despite woes against Washington Wizards - The Globe and Mail
The Raptors rolled to the top seed in the Eastern Conference behind a 59-23 season, in which they used bench players for 44 percent of all available minutes. They say they’ll continue to roll with what got them here. The team’s bench success was no fluke.

“I don’t think confidence slipped,” said Miles. “The playoffs, the biggest thing about it is everything is scouted, everybody is scouted, their tendencies and plays. It’s just about playing basketball, and that’s what the second group does as well as anybody — just play basketball.”
RR 
2 days ago
Raptors facing key defensive questions heading into Game 4 - Sportsnet.ca
If you want to draw a line from how the ‘old’ Raptors became the ‘new’ Raptors—at least offensively—you could do worse than starting from that contentious video session in Milwaukee.

What exact form the new-look Raptors offence would take wasn’t clear at the time, but everyone involved new something had to give.

“I mean, before we even got to the point where we changed the offence, for me to come back I knew something was going to change,” said Lowry. “We didn’t know what it was going to be, but we knew it would be different.”
RR 
2 days ago
Sunday game preview: Toronto Raptors at Washington Wizards | The Star
On paper this ought to favour Toronto. The Raptors, after all, boasted what was arguably the best cadre of backups in the NBA this season. Washington’s reserves ranked 15th on that list. But the absence of Toronto’s most reliable backup, Fred VanVleet, has been a contributing factor to Washington enjoying the reserve advantage in Games 1 through 3. VanVleet, nursing a shoulder injury that has kept him out of all but three minutes of this series, can’t be expected to be the saviour here. The likes of Delon Wright and C.J. Miles need to be more of a factor than they were in Game 3.
RR 
2 days ago
Raptors' 'bench mob' being outplayed by Wizards reserves | CBC Sports
"Fred's the type of guy, he's always making plays for us when things get a little stagnant," said Jakob Poeltl. "On defence, he's everywhere. He plugs the gaps. He helps out teammates all over the court. It's a little bit of everything that he does for us.

"[But] we know it's not an excuse. We know we have 12, 13, 14 guys on this team that can come in and contribute."

VanVleet has played less than three minutes in this series after suffering a shoulder injury in the season-finale. Casey said he's still "day to day."
RR 
2 days ago
All those turnovers a dagger for Raps in Game 3 loss | Toronto Sun
First credit where credit is due. The Wizards were far more aggressive, far more physical in a Game 3 on their home court than they had been earlier in the series and they forced the Raptors to react perhaps before they were fully ready, leading to a lot of these turnovers.

But Toronto has not been a team that is turnover prone. They averaged 13.5 a game in the regular season which was seventh-best in the Association. But through three playoff games that number is up to 16.7, the worst of any playoff team, save Portland, who are mired in dead last with 16.7 turnovers in the second season.
RR 
2 days ago
Raptors' Anunoby thriving, unfazed by bright lights of the playoffs - Sportsnet.ca
“It sounds crazy, but sometimes we need that,” Gortat said. “It’s definitely not bad. [Morris] set a tone. We were physical from the get-go. And that helped us.”

Anunoby’s interpretation of the events supports this. Asked Saturday what transpired between him and Morris, Anunoby said he hadn’t done anything to send Morris to the floor.

“He pushed me for no reason,” Anunoby said.
RR 
2 days ago
NBA Playoffs 2018: After a disastrous Game 3, it’s time to kill the DeRozan plus bench lineup - Raptors HQ
Imagine a team playing great for the first 46 minutes, and then collapsing in the final two before losing. You’d blame the loss on whatever happened in the final two minutes, right? The same can be—and should be—applied here.

How can the Raptors remove this issue until VanVleet returns? In my opinion, Dwane Casey needs to play Lowry with Wright and the bench unit. Lowry is, for comparison sake, the same type of player that VanVleet is in the lineup. Taking the ball out of Wright’s hands and putting it into Lowry’s could help alleviate these insanely bad two to three minute stretches in which Toronto coughs up a lead.
RR 
2 days ago
Toronto Raptors know how good they are and one playoff loss won’t shake that belief | National Post
“We’re fine,” Lowry said on Saturday afternoon, after the Raptors practised on the campus of Georgetown University in downtown Washington. “I mean, it’s a loss. We’re not happy at all.”

“But we’ve got to go out there and play again. There’s another game tomorrow at 6 p.m. We got a great practice in, great film in. We’re communicating. And that’s the biggest thing. We have to communicate, all be on the same page and know we have a bigger goal. And every day is a step to our goal.”
RR 
2 days ago
10 things I saw from Raptors-Wizards (Game 3) – The Defeated – Medium
Response: The Wizards are nothing if not absurdly prideful and they came out with their best effort. Marcin Gortat and Bradley Beal finally woke up, and the Wizards played with more desperation. The game was manageable through 2–½ quarters before a no-call led to a huge run for the Wizards that sealed it.
RR 
3 days ago
Raptors lose to Wizards in Game 3, lead series 2-1 - Sportsnet.ca
"That’s the ball game," a surly Casey said. "Some of it was self-inflicted, making passes that weren’t there, soft passes. But a lot of it was their intensity. We knew they were going to come out in a desperate mode, I thought we met it in the first quarter, but after that we didn’t."

DeMar DeRozan scored 23 points to lead the Raptors on a chippy night, while Kyle Lowry had 19. Jonas Valanciunas finished with 14 and OG Anunoby had 12.

The Raptors, who were swept by Washington on the same court in the opening round of the 2015 playoffs, never led by more nine points, falling behind for good early in the second quarter. And when Ty Lawson drilled a three with less than a second left in the third, it sent the Wizards into the fourth with a 101-82 advantage.
RR 
3 days ago
Washington Wizards, Toronto Raptors called for five technical fouls in 'chippy' Game 3
Ain't nobody fighting out here," Lowry said. "It got physical, but ain't nobody fighting. I mean ... it was heated. It was a heated moment, but that is the game of basketball. It gets competitive, and we're all grown men. We know what it is."

Teammates, referees and team officials then intervened as players were separated. Technical fouls were assessed to Anunoby and Morris.

"It sounds crazy, but sometimes we need that," Gortat said. "We need that. The crazy part is that it's always [Morris]. It should always be someone else. Personally it should be me. I don't have too many technical fouls. I don't have too many of those situations, but I should, and he did that for us, and he took a big hit today and foul trouble. He sacrificed himself for the team."
RR 
3 days ago
It took three minutes for the Wizards and Raptors to get into a Game 3 altercation
It didn't take long for playoff basketball to escalate in the nation's capital.

Less than three minutes to be exact.

On only the fifth possession of Game 3 between the Wizards and Raptors at Capital One Arena, Wizards forward Markieff Morris and Pacers forward OG Anunoby got tangled up and let their emotions out.
RR 
3 days ago
Raptors lose chippy Game 3 to Wizards | Toronto Sun
“When they play at that level, they are really good,” Raptors’ point guard Kyle Lowry said of the Wall-Beal tandem. “They are the heads of the snake, and we gotta cut them off.”

The Raptors also came in expecting the Wizards to come out swinging, looking to set the physical tone that the Raptors had owned through the first two games.

The first-quarter shoving match between Markieff Morris and OG Anunoby after Anunoby had already been called for a foul was the start. Both players were given technicals, but that just set the stage for a chippy game.
RR 
3 days ago
Washington Wizards gain new life by rolling past Toronto Raptors 122-103 in Game 3 of series | National Post
There was plenty of ugly for the Raptors. Repeated mistakes — Toronto had 19 turnovers — led to Washington baskets in transition, and opened the door for John Wall and Bradley Beal to fill up the stat sheet. Each of them had 28 points. It was exactly the kind of performance a reeling Wizards team needed from their best players, but the Raptors might have survived it if they hadn’t troubled their opponents so little.

Turnovers had not been a particular problem for the Raptors in the first two games at home and they weren’t at the start of Game 3, either. Toronto, thanks to more strong play from their starting unit, built up a nine-point lead in the first 10 minutes on Friday night, leading to much muttering from the Washington crowd.
RR 
3 days ago
Raptors disappear in lopsided loss to let Wizards back in series | CBC Sports
Trailing Toronto 2-0 in their the opening-round playoff series, the Washington Wizards came out swinging Friday night. Siakam's lip, with three stitches thanks to what he believed was an errant Kelly Oubre elbow, spoke of just a little bit of the carnage.

"They came out and punched us and we allowed them to," coach Dwane Casey summed it up.

Bradley Beal and John Wall scored 28 points apiece and the Wizards roughed up Toronto 122-103, cutting the Raptors' lead in their first-round playoff series to 2-1.
RR 
3 days ago
Bradley Beal bounces back in Wizards’ Game 3 victory - The Washington Post
Brooks, according to Beal, even went so far as to apologize for contributing to some of the off-guard’s shooting woes, underscored by a Game 2 performance in which Beal went 3 for 11 with nine points and a plus/minus rating of negative-34.

By halftime of Friday night’s 122-103 victory at Capital One Arena, Beal — to the delight of a packed house — had reclaimed the smooth shooting stroke that elevated him to 13th in the NBA in scoring and resulted in the sixth-year guard’s first all-star selection.
RR 
3 days ago
Raptors lose Game 3 and cool in Washington | The Star
Dwane Casey cautioned his team to prepare for it: “We’ve got to play this game like it’s 0-0,” said the Raptors coach. Kyle Lowry talked about the importance of “staying the course” and “staying cool” when Washington brought its inevitable onslaught.

“The intensity of the playoffs, every single game gets raised,” Lowry had warned on Friday morning. “With them being home, they’re going to be confident. They’re going to come out aggressive and come out swinging.”
RR 
3 days ago
Raptors' Fred VanVleet to miss Game 3 with shoulder injury - Sportsnet.ca
Toronto took the second game of the series as well, earning a 130-119 victory over Washington. They’ll look to repeat that performance on Friday, but will once again be without one of their top bench performers, who averaged 8.6 points per game in 2017-18 while shooting 41.4 per cent from three-point range.

With a 2-0 lead in the series going into Friday’s game in Washington, the Raptors are holding VanVleet out to give his shoulder time to heal, head coach Dwane Casey told Sportsnet’s Michael Grange.
RR 
3 days ago
Toronto Raptors’ Kyle Lowry took a step back to help his team move forward - SBNation.com
Lowry didn’t have to worry about modernizing his game this season like the rest of his teammates, who added some combination of playmaking, shooting, defense, and slashing. He represented the side of the Raptors’ problems that couldn’t be fixed on a practice court, problems he’s been picking at for years: fatigue and mental fortitude.

His task, then? Fewer minutes, fewer shots, and less time with the ball, a difficult ask of a player who made a career of stretching his body to its upper limit.
RR 
3 days ago
Meet the new Dwane Casey: Toronto Raptors coach has evolved to point where he’ll play anyone on the roster | National Post
It’s what we’ve done all year. I trust everybody that’s under contract,” Casey said on Friday morning as his team prepared for Game 3. “I’m willing to use everybody under contract. Because I’ve seen what they’ve done, I see what they do in practice. I saw what they’ve done in training camp. I saw what they did the few games that they played in the G League.”

The coach makes it sound like no big deal when he puts it like that, but one only has to look at his lineup deployment from previous seasons to understand how much of a departure this has been from what Casey himself used to do. In his first visit to the playoffs with the Raptors, in 2014, Casey played DeMar DeRozan for more than 40 minutes per game, and Kyle Lowry just under 39 minutes. Four more players averaged more than 27 minutes.
RR 
3 days ago
Bodog: Raps favourite to win the East - Article - TSN
After jumping out to a 2-0 first round series lead over the Washington Wizards, the Raptors odds to win the Eastern Conference on Bodog are 5/4, ahead of the Cleveland Cavaliers' odds at 8/5. The Cavs are currently tied 1-1 with the Indiana Pacers in their first round series.

The latest odds mark the first time since LeBron James returned to the Cleveland that the Cavaliers aren't the favourite to win the Eastern Conference.
RR 
4 days ago
Raptors' frontcourt winning battle but may face adjustment in Game 3 - Sportsnet.ca
In a matchup with plodding big man Marcin Gortat, Washington’s starting centre, Jonas Valanciunas had an opportunity to thrive — and he has, averaging a double-double (14 points on 70 per cent shooting and 11.5 boards) while helping to hold Gortat to just 12 points and nine rebounds total through two games.

Throw in Serge Ibaka — averaging a double-double himself (16.5 points, 10.5 boards) and tied for third in the NBA with 2.5 blocks per game early in the post-season — along with nitro-boosters Pascal Siakam and Jakob Poeltl, and the Raptors frontcourt was poised to be the difference-maker in Round 1.
RR 
4 days ago
Raptors fully aware beating Wizards in Washington will be no easy task | Toronto Sun
The Verizon Center might now be known as Capital One Arena, but it’s the same place where Toronto dropped a pair of games three years ago, to bring what had been a stirring 2014-15 season to an unceremonious close.

“We had some tough experiences out there, especially in the playoffs, right?” recalled Jonas Valanciunas after practice on Thursday before he and his teammates took off for D.C.

Did they ever. DeMar DeRozan and Kyle Lowry combined to miss 35 of 51 shot attempts in Game 3, yet the team somehow lost by only six points.
RR 
4 days ago
NBA Playoffs 2018: After two playoff games, this is a different DeMar DeRozan - Raptors HQ
DeRozan has always been able to score — Game 2’s 37-point outing reinforced that — and while past playoffs have cast him in a negative light, calling into question his ability to put the ball in the basket is the height of stupidity. In four of the last five seasons, DeMar has finished top-10 in total points scored — fairly cut and dried, I’d say.

So far in these playoffs, DeRozan has shown what a different player he is, compared to past versions that dealt with playoff hiccups. This time out, he’s been the coolest, calmest and most collected player on the court. So much so that there are times I find myself pleading for DeMar to show a little more fire. His demeanour can mislead; drawing some into believing some BS fake news narrative like “He doesn’t leave it all out on the court!” or “He needs to crank up his give a **** meter”, etc.
RR 
4 days ago
Raptors’ C.J. Miles getting hot from deep at the right time - The Globe and Mail
“I’m always yelling after making a three, it does something great for my confidence, my team’s confidence, especially in those moments when I’m going into the game because of what they consider my expertise,” Miles said. “Defenders do such a good job of trying to stay with you and keeping you from doing it. So you’ve got to find the creases and take your shot.

“I get a rush from a big three-point shot, like the high flyers get from dunking,” Miles added. “Especially when you can make the other team have to call a timeout.”
RR 
4 days ago
Raptors fully aware beating Wizards in Washington will be no easy task | National Post
We had some tough experiences out there, especially in the playoffs, right?” recalled Jonas Valanciunas after practice on Thursday before he and his teammates took off for D.C.

Did they ever. DeMar DeRozan and Kyle Lowry combined to miss 35 of 51 shot attempts in Game 3, yet the team somehow lost by only six points.

The finale was far worse. The Raptors trailed by 14 after a quarter and left the floor heads down, humiliated, after falling by 31 points.
RR 
4 days ago
Toronto Raptors stars DeMar DeRozan and Kyle Lowry talk about their on- and off-court evolution
ESPN: The regular season you guys just put in the books is a pretty big departure for the NBA. Usually if a team hasn't gotten quite where management wants it to go, they rip up the roster. This team, you guys kept the roster and changed the playbook. Now that you've seen that evolution through a season, how do you think it went?
DeMAR DeROZAN: I think you gotta withstand the test of time, you know? You gotta go through them dog days sometimes, to be built even stronger. And I think that's what we did. You gotta give the credit to the front office, believing. And it's a testament to us, sticking to our game. And one that continued to get better.
RR 
4 days ago
« earlier      
br rr tfc

Copy this bookmark:



description:


tags: