Washington Wizards vs Toronto Raptors Preview
Wizards 0-0 vs Raptors 0-0
When: Wednesday, Oct 20th, at 7:30 p.m.
Where: Scotiabank Arena, Toronto, ON
TV: NBCS Washington, NBA League Pass / Radio: The Team 980, WFED 1500 AM
Wizards: Thomas Bryant (Out, Left ACL), Rui Hachimura ( Out, Personal), Cassius Winston ( Out, Left Hamstring)
Raptors: Pascal Siakam (Out, Shoulder), Yuta Watanabe (Out, Calf)
Keep an eye on:
Defense: will Washington's defense improve? Its no secret that this is the big question facing the team this season, and growth in this area will determine how much they rise in the Eastern Conference. Washington had the worst defense in the NBA during the 20-21 season, ranking dead last in points allowed, giving up 118.5 points per game. Wes Unseld Jr was brought in to change that. Throughout the preseason, we have seen flashes of an improved defense and Unseld Jr's philosophy being applied, however, it wasn't consistent, which is to be expected with so many new faces now on the roster. Toronto brings a dangerous team with great guard play ( Fred VanVleet, Goran Tragic, Gary Trent Jr, Malachi Flynn), long, versatile, athletic wings (OG Anunoby, Chris Boucher, Scottie Barnes, Dalano Banton, Yuta Watanabe) and rugged bigs (Precious Achiuwa, Khem Birch). This will be a good test to see how much Washington has grown defensively. If everyone buys in, including franchise player Brad Beal, Washington has the talent and depth to be the surprise team in the Eastern Conference.