Some news before we get to tonight’s game. The Raptors announced via press release just prior to the game they have picked up the option for the fourth year on Ed Davis’ rookie contract. It is pretty much standard stuff, but a sign of good faith the Raptors still have faith in Ed. Now on to what is healthy of the Washington Wizards taking on the Raptors featuring the debut of Kyle Lowry. I am interested to see what Lowry brings to the table. Probably shouldn’t expect much given it is his first game and the pre-season. Second start in a row for Jonas and Lowry was in the starting 5 for this one.
Wizards win the tip and get a three ball from Webster in the corner. Bargnani first attempt of night is no good. Not long after Lowry would drive to the hoop and score showing what he can do. Jonas with a basic post move draws contact and a non-shooting foul. DeRozan would get a pretty nice slam after an empty trip with a missed three for Lowry and Raptors lead 4-3.
Jonas shows what he can do with and a great fake than drive and slam Raptors leading it 10-6. Raptors were moving at fast pace and maybe needed to get things under control a little still up 11-10. That said, Kyle Lowry = Up-tempo offense. The lead would go away with a score from booker on the break. That sounds like a cheesy cop show sitcom. Booker shows Jonas a little something with a nice move that left him puzzled. The Wizards had quietly built a 20-13 lead. Andrea Bargnani with a block but gives it right back to the shooter and it leads to a foul and Wizards keep possession. Than another foul and that puts the Wizards in the Bonus and they lead 23-15 after a pair at the line.
My under the radar choice from This Week In Raptorland Alan Anderson hit’s a three to give the Raptors offense some life. Ed Davis would get a bucket and Calderon in his new role with bucket as well and Raptors cut the Wizards lead down to just three. The run would stall there and the Raptors defense was leaking badly in the first. It was 34-24 Wizards after one and that will not make Dwane Casey happy.
Don’t expect to see Terrence Ross’ name in this re-cap as Matt Devlin informed us he is sitting out with a sore knee. Second unit was in for the start of second and doing a much better job so far with a 5-0 run to start the quarter causes Washington to call a time out to re-group. A very sloppy effort by both teams out of the time out but Amir Johnson finally keeps the run going with a bucket on the jumper. Defense was much better the entertainment value wasn’t. The Raptors may win ugly more than a few times this season. Raptors had a 13-2 run in first 6 minutes of the quarter to take back the lead 37-36. A glimpse of something good with starters back in as Lowry with a nice pass to DeRozan led him right into drawing a foul and getting to the line.
Jonas gets another foul his second really was a questionable call, but doing a good job with fouls for most part. Lowry hooks up with Fields to tie it at 45.Raptors would fall behind again but a fading jumper from Bargnani would actually find the target and Wiz led 49-48. More signs of Bargnani life and the Raptors had a lead 52-49 with under a minute to go in the half. Lowry shows his jets with 5.2 second on the clock he drives the length of the floor draws contact and gets to the line makes his free throws and the Raptors lead 54-49 at the half.
Demur DeRozan leads the way with 11 points at the half in the nothing new news from the pre-season. Raptors were running but kind of recklessly and as a result Wizards took control with back to back 3’s by the former Pacer A.J Price. Part of a 10-3 run to put the Wizards back on top by 2 and led 59-57. Raptors got back on track and a nice slam by Landry Fields made it 65-61. It turned into a back and forth affair tied many times the latest of those ties broken by an Amir jumper which looks really nice and Raptors nose ahead 69-67. Wizards would pull ahead in the late going and take a 77-73 lead to the 4 th quarter.
Wizards would open the final quarter with a 5-0 run. John Lucas III seeing his first action would nail a three to make it 84-78. He was on the floor with Calderon and he plays monkey see, monkey do and makes another three to make it 84-81. This was the good news but Andrea Bargnani was done for the night with a left calf bruise. Calderon blew an open lay-up he would make up for it with a three to tie the game at 88 only to give up the lead on the other end with some typical Jose defense. Raptors were fighting hard but the fact they were life and death with an undermanned Wizards squad was not doing much for me pre-season or not. Ed Davis was flirting with a double double with 8 points and 9 rebounds. Raptors swapped Lowry for Calderon with Lucas still in. Speed to the make with these two on the floor this could be fun to watch in the future. Raptors were still down 97-96 after a Lowry bucket on the Lucas handoff. Raptors took the lead back with two minutes to play 98-97. In the end this was far from pretty but the Raptors looked like they were going pull this one out of the fire. Lot of good, Lot of bad, a little of everything. Raptors did try to give this one away late but would hang on for the win 104-101.
This game had a little bit of everything. A real good, bad and ugly pre-season affair. A bruised calf likely means Andrea will not play till home opener….I am joking. But he might not given last season. Bruise is not a sprain though. I never went to medical school but I am safe in declaring this. Fields had a good night. So did a lot of others. But they had their issues on D most of the night against a team given their roster should have been an easy win. It wasn’t that.