John Wall: 'We Love Our Chances'


Game 7, if necessary, will be back in Toronto.

The Toronto Raptors pulled out a huge victory against the Washington Wizards on Wednesday night, winning Game 5 by a score of 108-98 to take a 3-2 series lead with Game 6 set for Friday night in the nation's capital.

The simplest reason the Wizards lost Game 5 is they took some awful shots in the fourth quarter, in which they led by five with just under nine minutes left, by hoisting up one forced 3-pointer after another. The Raptors converted on 46% of their field goals, including a terrific 11 for 25 effort from beyond the arc.

DeMar DeRozan had 32 points and Kyle Lowry 17 points and 10 assists, but arguably the difference-makers were Jonas Valanciunas, who played in the fourth quarter for the first time in about a month, and backup point guard Delon Wright.

Wall, who played the entire second half, gave up two possessions in the fourth quarter, and though he secured the ball during the closing stretch, his first shot attempt led to Toronto streaking out in transition. He has only averaged 10 points per game this series compared to the 14.7 during the regular season he averaged. He shot 12-for-24 from the floor, 3-for-4 from beyond the arc and 5-for-6 from the free throw line. They have to lock down the perimeter and, as this series has shown, that includes DeRozan even though he isn't known for making threes.

The Wizards have won eight straight playoff games at home, including games three and four against the Raptors last week which saw them overcome a 2-0 deficit.

John Wall had 26 points, and Bradley Beal added 20 for the Wizards.

Toronto trailed 87-82 after a three-point play by Kelly Oubre Jr. with 8:52 left, but regained the lead with a 6-0 run over the next 1:20.

Markets finish flat as Nifty closes in on 10600-mark
China's Shanghai Composite gained 2 percent and Hong Kong's Hang Seng gained 1.3 percent while Japan's Nikkei rose 0.9 percent. The 50-share NSE Nifty rose 29.70 points to 10,614.40 and the 30-share BSE Sensex gained 165.87 points to close at 34,616.64.

The Wizards' rebounding was a bright spot in Wednesday's loss, collecting a total of 50 rebounds. Marcin Gortat, the Wizards' 34-year-old center, said recently that he has "a little mobility advantage" against Valanciunas in this series.

"He's been facilitating for us all year", Lowry said. Washington did not get a whole lot of secondary scoring in game five, and Otto Porter.

Kyle Korver added 19 points and Cleveland's much-maligned defense tightened just in time as the Cavaliers seized their first lead in the first-round series after being down 1-0 and 2-1. Washington averaged 106.6 points in the regular season, ranking them 13th overall. His quantified shot quality - Second Spectrum's metric that measures the likelihood of an attempt going in if the average National Basketball Association player takes the shot - was 48.0, his highest of the series. "And I saw the (Game 4) film, it was insane".

Three down, one more to go.

The team talked between Games 4 and 5 about "letting it fly", and they are still using that mantra.

The Raptors were unable to manage the Wizards penetration and shooting down the stretch in the previous two games.

"We love our chances", John Wall said.

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.