Wall is 'very confident' in Forcing Game 7

Wizards forward Porter Jr. to miss rest of series vs. Raptors

Wall is 'very confident' in Forcing Game 7

The Washington Wizards could not crack the Raptors defense in their tough game five loss.

The Wizards held a five-point lead in the fourth quarter, but ultimately lost 108-98 to fall behind 3-2 in the series.

"I think we always prepare for any lineup that goes out there", DeRozan said.

For Casey, the Raptors went back to taking "the shots we normally take".

DeRozan had 30 of his 32 points through three quarters, then turned facilitator in the fourth. Valanciunas played just 15 minutes in Game 4 but 32 on Wednesday and finished with 14 points and 13 rebounds. "With C.J. out there, he spaces the floor tremendously, they've got to worry about a knock-down shooter like him", DeRozan said. We just didn't make shots. Wright made big play after big play down the stretch and finished with 18 points, five rebounds and five assists in 26 minutes.

In a close, back-and-forth affair, the Raptors led 79-78 heading into the fourth quarter. Toronto was killed on the glass, out-rebounded 50-35.

However, Washington has a stellar home-court advantage, which has seen the team win eight consecutive playoff games, including Games 3 and 4 of this series. This Wizards team is better than that Bucks squad. Thousands more anxious fans gathered outside in Maple Leaf Square to watch both the Raptors and Toronto Maple Leafs play on the big screens. Kelly Oubre Jr. converted a three-point play with a dunk and a free throw that gave the Wizards an 87-82 lead with nine minutes to play. "We were just more aggressive".

DeRozan does a good job of maintaining body and ball control going straight up against Wizards' big men and is often rewarded by the referees.

Game 5 was a completely different story.

Washington's John Wall reacts after missing a shot during Game 5 on Wednesday
Washington's John Wall reacts after missing a shot during Game 5 on Wednesday

Gortat had six rebounds in the first quarter.

Washington didn't score again until Beal's three with 16 seconds left.

But there's just one more thing Wall wants to make clear. "I thought that was the difference".

Neither team has won on the other's floor. With game six in Washington, the Raptors will need to tighten up a few areas if they don't want to this series to last a full seven games. Game 6 is Friday in Washington.

Casey said the losses were uncharacteristic of how the Raptors have played on the road this season. "He gave us an opportunity for Kyle (Lowry) and DeMar (DeRozan) to get of the ball a little bit more".

"It's the best-out-of-three and for somebody to win the series they got to win on the road".

"Both teams held up banners that said "#TorontoStrong" to honor those affected by the van attack that happened in Toronto on Monday.

The Raptors chose to stick with their veteran big man down the stretch and it paid major dividends as Valanciunas had six points in the fourth quarter, but more importantly it was his presence in the paint on both ends that was the key as he had some big rebounds and even made some plays in pick-and-roll defense (not known as his strong suit) in crunch time. The Raptors as a team had 26 assists, compared to 21 for the Wizards. Beal and Porter hit late jumpers, helping Washington trim to Raptors lead to 48-47 at halftime. There was the 25 road wins this season, a franchise record, but the Raptors also had a net rating of plus-4.8 points per 100 possessions away from home, a figure that put them third in the National Basketball Association, behind only wonder-teams Houston and Golden State.


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