For a team clinging to the hope of reaching 10th place and making an appearance in the NBA’s postseason play-in games, last night’s at-the-buzzer loss to the Toronto Raptors was a kick in the teeth.
For the fans who’d already given up on the team reaching the postseason and whose thoughts turned to the likes of Cade Cunningham, Jalen Suggs and Eric Mobley, it was a needlessly harrowing come-from-ahead defeat.
In classic Wizards fashion, Washington built a 19-point lead early in the third quarter only to cough it up and lose on a buzzer-beating three from Gary Trent Jr.
Neither team played well. The Wizards where outshot by the Raptors (though Toronto didn’t shoot well) and were -3 in turnovers. They stayed in the game with offensive rebounds and free throws.
Russell Westbrook had one of those signature Westbrook games — another triple-double (23 points, 14 rebounds, 11 assists), but just 9-25 from the floor and 4 turnovers. After three excellent quarters, Westbrook’s touch turned stony — just 2-11 shooting in the fourth.
Davis Bertans shot well — 5-8 from three-point range — and grabbed 5 rebounds in 24 minutes. Garrison Mathews joined him in the sniping, hitting 4-6 from deep.
Deni Avdija was decent with 12 points and 10 rebounds. His defense wasn’t stellar, but he avoided fouls and turnovers.
Other than that...not so good. Alex Len had 13 points and 8 rebounds, but also 3 turnovers and 4 fouls. Anthony Gill, playing rare minutes in place of an injured Robin Lopez (quad tightness) had 6 rebounds in 10 minutes, but also shot 1-5.
Ish Smith would have had a decent night if he could have avoided those 3 turnovers. Chandler Hutchison and Raul Neto were just plain awful.
For the Raptors, YODA hero Malachi Flynn tortured the Wizards with 16 points, 6 rebounds, 4 assists, 4 steals and 2 blocks.
Below are the four factors that decide who wins and loses in basketball — shooting (efg), rebounding (offensive rebounds), ball handling (turnovers), fouling (free throws made).
I’ve simplified them a bit. While the factors are usually presented as percentages, that’s more useful over a full season. In a single game, the raw numbers in each category are easier to understand.
PACE is possessions per 48 minutes.
Four Factors: Wizards at Raptors
Player Production Average
Below are Player Production Average (PPA) results from last night’s game. PPA is my overall production metric, which credits players for things they do that help a team win (scoring, rebounding, play-making, defending) and dings them for things that hurt (missed shots, turnovers, bad defense, fouls). PPA is a per possession stat that includes accounting for defense and role. In PPA, 100 is average and higher is better.
The table below is sorted by each player’s total contributions for the game.
POSS is the number of possessions each player was on the floor in this game.
|Gary Trent Jr.||31||67||63||-17|