By: Jeremy Hyman
The Wizards and Raptors split the season series, 2-2.
Wing Scorers - Toronto is the only team in the Eastern Conference with two different 20 point scorers and they both play out on the wings. DeMar Derozan (21.6) and Rudy Gay (20.4) are a dangerous one-two combination as they both have the capability to carry a team on their back and score the ball at will. With the Wizards' top wing defender, Trevor Ariza, still questionable with his hamstring injury, these two could present a problem on the offensive end. On the flip side, the Wizards wings will be critical to their offense tonight as Bradley Beal and Martell Webster look to again give the Wizards the perimeter shooting they need.
Finding the Second Unit - The Wizards have gotten creative staggering different starters out on the court with the second unit, but there's no question they'll need some more production from their bench. One player who has given the Wizards some energy in that second unit has been Jan Vesely. He's doing all of the little things that help a team win and gaining confidence with each game. Look for Vesely to play valuable minutes again tonight as he has served as the first big man off the bench over the past couple of games.
Wizards - Bradley Beal continues to score the ball at a high clip as he again led the team in points on Wednesday night with 26. That's three straight games he's scored over 20 and there's no sign of him slowing down.
Raptors - DeMar DeRozan tied a career-high with 37 points last Wednesday vs. Chicago and is averaging 25.8 points a game over the Raptors last five games.
Offensive Rebounding - The Raptors enter tonight's game second in the NBA in offensive rebounding at 13.6 per game. Limiting them to one shot per possession will be key to the Wizards getting their third win in a row tonight.
The action kicks off at 7:00pm at the Air Canada Centre.
These two players both come in scoring the ball at a high rate and have very similar season averages. They both lead their team in scoring and will likely spend much of tonight guarding each other, which should make for a fun matchup. Last season, Beal averaged 23.0 ppg in three games against Toronto, while shooting 54.3% from the field and 61.1% from 3-point range. DeRozan averaged 22.3 ppg in four games played against the Wizards, while shooting 47.3% from the field.
Bradley Beal goes in all alone for the slam.