Arenas, Hayes Carry Wizards in OT
Washington 119, Toronto 111 (OT)
WASHINGTON, Dec. 6 (Ticker) -- Gilbert Arenas came up big in regulation and Jarvis Hayes became the go-to guy in overtime for the Washington Wizards.
Arenas scored 37 points and Hayes scored six of his season-high 21 in the extra session while also coming up with a big assist and steal as the Wizards outlasted the Toronto Raptors 119-111.
"The first one I missed so bad that I was just happy the ball came back to me," said Peterson, who missed a 3-pointer from the top of the key before burying another from the left wing. "I thought, 'If I get the ball back, I'm going to have to make the shot.' Luckily it came back into my hands and I was able to knock down the shot to get it to overtime."
Hayes opened the scoring in the extra session and gave the Wizards the lead for good at 110-107 with a 3-pointer with 3:56 left.
"Once a player like Jarvis Hayes gets it going, he can shoot with the best of them and he showed that tonight," Arenas said. "His confidence is really picking up and once he hits a shot, he feels like he can hit them all. If he has an inch of daylight, you encourage him to take the shot."
Antawn Jamison, who collected 26 points, 14 rebounds and six assists, stretched the lead to five on a layup that was set up by a beautiful long bounce pass by Hayes.
The third-year swingman helped seal the victory with a steal which led to a clear-path foul. His free throw made it 115-111 with 37 seconds left.
"I wanted to come out and be aggressive from the jump and that's what I did," said Hayes, who also grabbed a season-high eight rebounds. "We're still trying to find that consistency so we can reel off a few wins and get back on top of the division."
"We got some stops," Wizards coach Eddie Jordan said. "Jarvis came in and did a great job in overtime, especially on the defensive end."
Jamison's long jumper on the next possesion swelled the lead to six, although Arenas narrowly avoided a charging call before passing the ball off to Jamison.
"In overtime, we ran our sets and executed well," Jordan said. "It was a good thing that we had defensive-minded players on the floor, and yet we stayed very disciplined on the offensive end. It was a combination of both."
Toronto coach Sam Mitchell said the combination of Arenas and Jamison, coupled with the hot hand of Hayes, was too much for the Raptors to overcome.
"Their two All-Stars stepped up and did some good things when they needed it," Mitchell said. "That's what the really good ones do, and they've got two of them. That makes it tough. Then they've got a guy like Hayes."
Chris Bosh collected 27 points and nine assists for the Raptors, who had won their previous two contests.
"We see what happens more and more when we lay it on the line like that," Bosh said. "We give ourselves a chance to win. We're in the game. We went into overtime and we just had a tough stretch."
"I won't say we had a moral victory but guys are starting to really realize that if we play hard we can give ourselves a chance to win," Peterson added. "That's all you can really ask for."
Despite the loss and the team's 3-16 mark, Mitchell remained upbeat on what his team has been doing.
"The guys played hard, they played together, they tried to help each other," Mitchell said. "Sure, they make mistakes, but young guys do that. We can live with those. The guys try to do everything I ask them to.
"What am I going to go in there and say to my guys, other than 'Great effort'? ... Those guys are busting their hump, man. Regardless of what our record is, I'm proud to be these guys' coach."