Raptors fall to Wizards in OT thriller, putting playoff prospects in peril
Toronto now 4 games back of Washington for final play-in spot with 5 remaining
Bradley Beal scored 14 of his 28 points in the fourth quarter and overtime Thursday night, and Russell Westbrook had his 34th triple-double of the season in the Washington Wizards' 131-129 win over Toronto that all but eliminated the Raptors from the NBA's play-in tournament.
"We just needed one of those [shots] to go," Toronto coach Nick Nurse said, "but it was not to be."
Beal, who played 45 minutes just a day after the Wizards lost at Milwaukee, spent most of the game trying to escape Toronto's defensive attention.
"As soon as I walked out of the locker room they had a guy on me," he said. "It was tough, but it was effective. It kept me out of the game. I had to move without the ball and let my teammates make plays."
"I think we had him turned in circles most of the night," Nurse said.
WATCH | Wizards outlast Raptors in OT:
Westbrook had 13 points, 17 rebounds and 17 assists before fouling out with 15.3 seconds left in overtime. The triple-double was the 180th of his career, leaving him one behind Oscar Robertson. It was the sixth triple-double in seven games for Westbrook, who came up one assist short in the other game.
"I didn't think he played one of his better games," Wizards coach Scott Brooks said, "but look at the numbers."
Raul Neto scored a career-high 25 points, and Robin Lopez had six of his season-high 24 points and two big blocks in overtime for the Wizards, who had lost their previous nine games against the Raptors.
"I always come in with the mentality of being aggressive and taking shots when they're needed. They had two or three guys on Brad the whole game," said Neto, who made 7 of 11 shots, including five 3-pointers. "It was a key game for us to make the play-in and everybody was locked in."
Westbrook did not seal his triple-double until a driving layup with 2:22 left in the fourth quarter that left the Wizards one point behind.
Beal scored eight of the next 10 points for Washington, but Fred VanVleet's 3-pointer with 1.3 seconds left sent the game into overtime.
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Three of the Wizards' last four games have been decided by one or two points.
"To bounce back against a team that's desperate, playing for their playoff lives — we knew they were going to bring it," Brooks said.
A putback by Khem Birch followed by Siakam's 15-foot jumper gave the Raptors a 71-58 lead, the largest of the game, early in the second half.
The Wizards tied it 82-82 with 1:49 left in the third quarter on on a four-point play by Garrison Mathews, but then went more than three minutes without scoring.
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