The Toronto Raptors close out preseason action with an improbable win against the Washington Wizards
FiredUp Network Sports Writer
Tuesday, October 12, 2021
The Toronto Raptors held their final preseason game in Washington against the Wizards in which they escaped with a 113-108 win thanks to the late-game heroics of two bench players. Toronto rested both OG Anunoby and Fred VanVleet, giving an opportunity to the players who are fighting for the last three roster spots.
The offense was a bit of a struggle at first but Goran Dragic helped keep the Raptors afloat. The one-time all-star finished with 16 points, four rebounds, and three assists. Meanwhile, on the Wizards side of things, Kyle Kuzma had easily his best performance in his short time wearing a Washington jersey, proving to be a nuisance for Toronto as he finished with 24 points on 67 percent shooting from the field.
Washington led by as much as 14 points and was dissecting the Raptors' defense. Spencer Dinwiddie was a maestro in finding the open man including Davis Bertans a few times for open three-pointers. Despite the lack of energy throughout the majority of quarters, Toronto closed out those quarters exceptionally. Mostly due to the stellar play of Malachi Flynn.
In yet another game where he makes a compelling argument for more playtime, Flynn finished with 22 points, three assists, and two rebounds. His timely shot-making in the fourth was crucial in Toronto's efforts at chipping away at their deficit. But it was thanks to an unexpected explosion from Sam Dekker that willed the Raptors to victory.
Checking into the game in only the second half, Dekker finished with 18 points on 4-5 shooting from beyond the arc in just 16 minutes of play. He simply couldn't miss from three including a four-point play that sucked the life out of the Washington reserves that were in the game at the time.
It will be interesting who secures the final three roster spots but Dekker made a substantial argument for why he should be on the final roster with the performance he had. With the preseason concluded Toronto will now turn their attention to gearing up for their regular-season opener which happens to be against the Washington Wizards. The game will be at 7:30 PM ET.