Published: Sun, April 15, 2018
Sport | By Gary Shelton

Raptors' Fred VanVleet (shoulder) ruled out for Game 1 against the Wizards

Raptors' Fred VanVleet (shoulder) ruled out for Game 1 against the Wizards

Updates with new lead.

With the 2018 National Basketball Association playoffs upon us, we take a look at first round the matchup between the Washington Wizards and the Toronto Raptors. DeMar DeRozan had 17 points C.J. Miles and OG Anunoby each had 12 and Kyle Lowry had 11 points and nine assists for the Raptors, whose only previous victory in the opening game of a playoff series came in the second round against Philadelphia in 2001.

A "culture reset" carried the Toronto Raptors to the top of the Eastern Conference for the first time this season.

Not that they're overly excited about it.

TORONTO - Serge Ibaka had 23 points and 12 rebounds, Delon Wright scored 11 of his 18 points in the fourth quarter, and Toronto snapped a 10-game losing streak in playoff series openers by beating Washington.

"It's out of the way now", DeMar DeRozan said of the streak.

The Raptors had gone 0-10 in their last 10 Game 1 matchups in the NBA Playoffs.

Raptors over the Wizards in 4-game sweep. "It's a journey, it's a marathon", Casey said. And we don't expect him to be out long.

Wolves promoted to Premier League after six-year absence
They've been out of the Premier League for six years however by no means seemed at risk of lacking out this time round. Third-placed Fulham were held to a 1-1 draw at Craven Cottage by Brentford which confirmed Wolves' promotion.

"They are a good team", Wizards coach Scott Brooks said, about Toronto's sizzing three-point shooting.

But there was no sigh of relief after the win, said coach Dwane Casey. "His 3-point shooting is huge".

Washington star point guard John Wall, who missed half the season with a knee injury and had not faced the Raptors in any of their four regular season meetings, put up 21 points and 15 assists.

Bradley Beal contributed 19 points, Mike Scott had 14 off the bench and Marcin Gortat finished with 12 for Washington, which shot nearly 48-percent and had a 59-55 lead at halftime.

"We've been here before", Beal said. On home court, we're supposed to win.

Lowry connected on both free throws and then found Wright for a layup to give Toronto the lead. "I think it's consistent of what we've been trying to do the entire year: move the ball and set up other people and trust other people to make plays when [the opponent is] trying to take those two out".

This isn't the Toronto Raptors team that hadn't won a National Basketball Association playoff opener in 17 years. But the Raptors' double-digit lead was shortlived and they led 28-23 after one.

"Playoff games are tough", Casey said.

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