Yes, hello, we already know the mood going into Game 1 of Raptors vs. Wizards. Many experts (and fans, let’s be honest), are worried about Toronto’s Game 1 performance. And why shouldn’t they be? The Raps haven’t won a Game 1 in [checks paper] 17 years. That, my friends, is a long time. (I was but a young high school student then — good times.)
Anyway, let’s set all that aside and ask the bigger question: who is winning this series?
The Raptors come in as the East’s number one seed, which has to count for something. They’ve been relatively healthy — though fingers crossed on Fred VanVleet is doing — and consistent throughout. As both a top five offense and defense for most of the regular season, Toronto’s squad has proven itself capable of handling almost every challenge thrown its way. This includes a Wizards team that has been all over the map this season.
The Wizards spent large chunks of the season playing without their best player in John Wall. And they spent most of the rest of the time celebrating the fact that they didn’t have to play with Wall — which is, in a word, odd. Wall is a great player, and has done a lot to make the Wizards a good team. But there’s a stench wafting off this Washington squad; they don’t seem to like each other much — Bradley Beal and Wall, in particular. This could be a problem for Washington, or they could unite in the spirit of spite and play up their potential.
Raptors fans (and some of the players themselves) surely remember 2015 when that same All-Star combo (plus Otto Porter and Marcin Gortat — and the ghost of Paul Pierce) ran roughshod all over our beloved team. I promise that’ll be the last time I bring that up. We’re nervous, is my point.
In any case, now we arrive at the decision point: the Raptors and Wizards play Game 1 today at 5:30, just four hours away. It’s hailing, and raining, and freezing raining, and snowing(???) outside, and we need to pick a winner.
So, who ya got?
What’s the outcome of Round 1, Raptors vs. Wizards?
This poll is closed
Raptors in 4 (I am elated)
Raptors in 5 (Not bad at all!)
Raptors in 6 (As long as they win Game 1)
Raptors in 7 (I need a vacation)
Wizards in Any Number of Games (Life is cruel)