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Raptors (7-13) at Wizards (7-10)

Wizards starters: Gilbert Arenas, Nick Young, Caron Butler, Antawn Jamison, Brendan Haywood

Raptors: Jose Calderon, DeMar DeRozan, Hedo Turkoglu, Chris Bosh, Andrea Bargnani

Line: Wizards by 3.5

Gilbert Arenas was assessed a technical foul in Toronto on Tuesday when he missed a layup, partly because he felt someone had grabbed his jersey and no foul was called. The next day against Milwaukee, Arenas could be spotted incessantly talking to officials about non-calls. No matter how many times he drove to the basket and hit the ground, he couldn't get a break.

After attempting just two free throws against the Bucks, Arenas expressed his displeasure with how officials are calling the game for him, saying that they are intentionally ignoring contact on his drives to the basket. "It's just frustrating because I can't play my game, because I'm 'jumping into everybody'. If two refs say it, that's fine," Arenas said. "But if every ref says it to me, it means you're before the game, you're consciously thinking 'When he goes to the lane, we can't call it because they're jumping straight up.' "

Through the first 13 games of the season, Arenas averaged 7.6 free throw attempts a game. But in the past four games, Arenas has only attempted eight free throws combined. He didn't make any trips to the foul line against Charlotte, but he made all five of his free throw attempts against Toronto on Tuesday.

"I think they need to change the way they call the game. That's all it is," Arenas said. "Am I making basketball plays? The big man's out of position and if he didn't work fast enough to get out of that lane, that's how the rules work. If you didn't get outside that lane, anything in there, it's blocking foul. If you get outside it, it's a charge. Now, I get in there and it's a no-call."

In his last meeting with Chris Bosh, Brendan Haywood helped keep the all-star forward quiet when they were matched up head-to-head. Bosh scored 22 points on Tuesday, but he shot just 7 for 22 from the field. In the second quarter, Bosh scored 18 points with Haywood starting the period on the bench. With Haywood guarding him the other three quarters, Bosh was 1 for 14.

Haywood said he is expecting Bosh to come out determined to play better on Friday, but added that he is up for the challenge. On Wednesday, Haywood helped limit Andrew Bogut to just eight points, nearly 10 below his average.

"For this team to be successful, the way I help the team is defense and rebounding," Haywood said. "When you have a high level player like a Chris Bosh, a Bogut, I really take pride in trying to hold them under their average and at least if they get there, they have to shoot a bad percentage. I play defense the way the coaches tell me too, as far as taking away their left hand or right hand, and I try to be aggressive and use my length to bother their shots. The last two games, it's worked."

The Raptors are fired up and frustrated after losing the past five games. They were especially upset after surrendering a season-high 146 points in Atlanta on Wednesday. The players and coaches reportedly held an hour-long team meeting to address the chemistry problems inside the team, mostly between the players born in America and those who hail from Europe.

Coach Flip Saunders said he is hopeful that his team doesn't let up against a staggering foe. "We're talking about a team that is struggling to win a game. They've got good players that aren't playing very well right now. We've got to put ourselves in the position where we can jump on them right away," said Saunders.

Saunders said he is expecting Toronto to come out ready to play. "You give up 146 and you're going to try to correct it. I think there's no question. They've given up about a 120 a game over the last six games, and they've called each other out about being a poor defensive team, so they're going to try to come out with a great ammount of intensity to start the game, and we have to try to match it, which is something we haven't done real well at. We've done it on the road some, but not at home. But hopefully we'll be able to do that tonight."

By Michael Lee  |  December 4, 2009; 6:49 PM ET
 
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Next: Raptors 109, Wizards 107

Comments

wow they have NOTHING tonight. this might be over by halftime.

Posted by: rachel216 | December 4, 2009 7:34 PM | Report abuse

boykin's three got them goin!

Posted by: rachel216 | December 4, 2009 7:48 PM | Report abuse

The Wiz only have 7 assists at the half and are shooting 31.3%, but are somehow still in the game, probably because the Raptors have 8 more turnovers and the Wiz have 5 more offensive rebounds for more second chances.

The Wiz just need to play a strong second half.

Posted by: cannontl | December 4, 2009 8:27 PM | Report abuse

Jamison and Butler are stinkin it up tonight. Sheesh! Our Captains!

Posted by: bozomoeman | December 4, 2009 8:47 PM | Report abuse

I am so sick of Caron Butler. Sit his a s s down!!!

Posted by: rphilli721 | December 4, 2009 8:47 PM | Report abuse

Never seen a player pass up easy shots for harder ones. Commit so many untimely turnovers and the offense just stops when it gets to him. His pass the NY at the end of the 3rd for a dunk was a second late. I didn't even think he was going to pass it. I would start Blatche and move Jamison to the 2 in a second. He's had what 2 good games all season.

Posted by: rphilli721 | December 4, 2009 8:54 PM | Report abuse

Yeah and how many wanted to throw NY under the bus not too long ago.

I think CB will turn it around eventually.

Posted by: cannontl | December 4, 2009 9:01 PM | Report abuse

Caron either needs a Shrink or a Dew!

Posted by: bozomoeman | December 4, 2009 9:02 PM | Report abuse

Should the Zards go on to win this game, the great irony will be that usually it's the Wiz that lose double digit leads and games in the 4th.

Posted by: bozomoeman | December 4, 2009 9:09 PM | Report abuse

What on god's earth is Boykins doing in the game on defense the last two Toronto possessions? What? He is not exactly hard to shoot over. Dumb.

@Cannon,

What does NY have to do with CB? NY sucked and is playing slightly better now, but CB has sucked pretty much all year. IMO, Blatche has outplayed him virtually every game.

Posted by: rphilli721 | December 4, 2009 9:36 PM | Report abuse

As much as I have enjoyed Boykins's play the past few games, Flip is milking it and overusing him.

Posted by: Utilityman1 | December 4, 2009 9:43 PM | Report abuse

what a horrible OT. game over. gil's TO was huge. and they can't get any stops.

Posted by: rachel216 | December 4, 2009 9:44 PM | Report abuse

Some of the dumbest possessions I've ever seen in overtime! Game over!

Posted by: rphilli721 | December 4, 2009 9:44 PM | Report abuse

Sad to see the Wizards are letting another game at home slip away to a team they should be able to handle on home court. Even the wins they've been getting haven't looked all that convincing, like wins a playoff team should gain against "lesser" competition. Wizards threw this game away. Not sure Toronto had to earn it in OT. Wizards still not a good team right now.

Posted by: CDon | December 4, 2009 9:45 PM | Report abuse

And I think Boykins should not be in the game right now. If you need stops, play someone who can make stops. If you need to score points, consider putting Young on the floor.

Posted by: CDon | December 4, 2009 9:46 PM | Report abuse

Well, I'm hoping I could say I spoke too soon. Good to see the Wizards climb back out of a hole they dug for themselves.

Posted by: CDon | December 4, 2009 9:47 PM | Report abuse

rphilli721- we spoke too early! oops! but can they get a stop?!!!

Posted by: rachel216 | December 4, 2009 9:47 PM | Report abuse

nope can't get a stop. ugh

Posted by: rachel216 | December 4, 2009 9:52 PM | Report abuse

Tough, tough loss.

Posted by: and_1 | December 4, 2009 9:54 PM | Report abuse

Bad loss. Wizards are still a mentally weak team, compounded now by the fact that they're not a cohesive unit, either.

Posted by: CDon | December 4, 2009 9:54 PM | Report abuse

lmao...blown lay up...figures! Just when you think he is all the way back. That is was a layup line shot and he can't elevate enough. What a waste! That game was a huge set back. Bosh was an animal!

Posted by: rphilli721 | December 4, 2009 9:56 PM | Report abuse

didn't help that they missed a bunch of FTs down the stretch. they need to practice those FTs.

i would've went for the three but i guess not...

Posted by: rachel216 | December 4, 2009 9:56 PM | Report abuse

TERRIBLE way to finish this one out at home. Arenas needs to hit that jumper or drive to the hoop with some balls. Weak, weak, weak.

Posted by: FrancoNiell | December 4, 2009 9:57 PM | Report abuse

On a positive note we saw some vintage Gil tonight. We might have something to look forward to after all.

Posted by: and_1 | December 4, 2009 9:57 PM | Report abuse

Wizards did a good job to come back -- even if they couldn't pull it off.

Hindsight is 20-20, but I would have been curious to have seen Young instead of Boykin in the OT period (e.g. Arenas sliding over to PG, Young SG). Boykin had a solid 2nd quarter, but he came back to earth tonight in the 4th.

Posted by: JPRS | December 4, 2009 9:59 PM | Report abuse

arenas hasn't been able to finish layups consistently this season.. it's a little off.

Posted by: rachel216 | December 4, 2009 10:01 PM | Report abuse

@rphilli

Young sucked most of the year too early on.

CB has been a good player in the past, an all star even. I am not ready to give up on him yet.

Posted by: cannontl | December 4, 2009 10:07 PM | Report abuse

I think Toronto wanted the game a little more tonight.

Posted by: cannontl | December 4, 2009 10:08 PM | Report abuse

Wow.
Suanders said in his post-game conference that this is the most disappointed he's been in the team this year. That's saying a lot considering all that has happened already.

Posted by: and_1 | December 4, 2009 10:11 PM | Report abuse

Butler is simply horrendous IMO. Passes up open shots and looks simply LOST out there.

Posted by: Crunkenstein | December 4, 2009 10:23 PM | Report abuse

For all of you who thought the Wizards were back because they won 2 games in a row this game should bring you back to reality.

Face it the Wizards are if lucky a 6,7,8 spot playoff team which means if they play a healthy Clev, Bos, Atl or Orl they will get knocked out in the first round.

Hopefully the new owner won't be so loyal and he will clean house and start over with this club. I can't sit through another season of the little 3!

CB 4-11 1-3
AJ 4-16 1-7
GA 12-26 5-11

Tot 20-53 7-21

They suck.....

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | December 4, 2009 10:40 PM | Report abuse

Just took a look at the box score.
All of our starters had a negative +/-, with Arenas being the worst at -19 and, ironically, Young and Butler being the best at -3.
Don't know what to make of that.

Posted by: tgif11 | December 4, 2009 10:40 PM | Report abuse

WIZARDS revert to form tonight, to wit: LIZARDS. Winning five of six is too heavy a burden for this team to carry. "Glory, glory, hallelujah, when I lay my burden down...."[PORGY and BESS].

Posted by: glawrence007 | December 4, 2009 10:23 AM | Report abuse


Posted by: glawrence007 | December 4, 2009 7:35 PM | Report abuse

And a third time. "Lay my burden down." In other words.......wait, try this.......in FLIP SAUNDERS' words, this team can't stand prosperity. My sentiments exactly. While the phyrric "feel good, we played a good game" carma flowed around the arena and into t.v. land homes, FLIP called it like it was. "Two non-playoff teams....." Coaches disgust at kicking a sure win in the head, and snapping the winning spirit birthed by four wins in five games was palpable. Unfortunately, I was right on the money before the game, during the game, and now with the post-mortems. Damm, I hate it when I'm right.

The answer is to first try to instill that winning team spirit in the individual players.......that f*** you opponent, WE are NOT going to lose, so don't swell up on me. And then secondly, begin the process of weeding out the ones who are infected with losers malaise and are unwilling to change.

Player accountability is on the horizon in D.C. for the first time in a long time.

Posted by: glawrence007 | December 4, 2009 10:48 PM | Report abuse

That was a beautiful drive to the hoop by Gilbert on that last play. He came so clean to the hoop, I think he was thoroughly surprised how easy the layup was and he blew it.

Then Jamison blew one of his point blank signature put back tip ins.

Man they deserved to pull that one out. Especially after falling behind in the OT and then Gilbert pulls them back into a tie with the three ball.

That one hurt. Even how bad that Toronto wanted it, we still could have had it.

Wow! Why does that game seem so important.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | December 5, 2009 12:42 AM | Report abuse

For all of you who thought the Wizards were back because they won 2 games in a row this game should bring you back to reality.

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | December 4, 2009 10:40 PM |

Yeah, a reality of a Team that fought hard but came up a fingernail short.

That fact that they lost might mean continued failure to some, though it could mean something different to others.

One thing is for sure though, I think the Wizards are pissed really bad about this loss and at the same time they can hold there heads up because they fought hard and it wasn't a stinker.

They needed to win and did not pull it off, but 15 rounds is not over yet.

It is a long season BulletsFan78 and I am sure that the Wizards will finish higher than the two numbers in your handle.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | December 5, 2009 1:12 AM | Report abuse

Gilby tried to take over the game by shooting 26 shots, but Les BouleS still lost!!!

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | December 5, 2009 10:08 AM | Report abuse

This team will be blown up and they will have several terrible seasons and have high draft picks which may eventually have them playing good ball by 2015...maybe.

That's the best any Wizard fan can hope.

THEY ARE THE REDSKINS! They are not as good as THEY think they are.

Raptors and Bobcats at home.. LOL What a joke

Posted by: frediemac1 | December 5, 2009 11:14 AM | Report abuse

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