Joseph beats buzzer with 3 as Raptors beat Wizards 84-82
WASHINGTON (AP) — On one of their worst offensive nights of the season, Cory Joseph and the Toronto Raptors executed when it mattered.
Joseph made a 3-pointer at the buzzer following a well-worked inbounds play, lifting the Raptors an 84-82 victory over the Washington Wizards on Saturday night.
“I knew if I got to him clean, he was going to knock it in,” said DeMar DeRozan, who found Joseph in the corner with a kickout pass. “That’s just Cory. You can trust him with that.”
Kyle Lowry scored 27 points for the Raptors, who before Joseph’s 3 had not led since early in the first quarter and tied a season high with 22 turnovers.
DeRozan added 20 points for Toronto, which overcame that sloppiness to win its fourth straight.
“As long as there’s time on the clock, it don’t matter, anything can happen,” DeRozan said. “As long as we stay with it until the last second comes off the clock, we feel we have a chance.”
Bradley Beal scored 20 points for Washington, which lost its fourth straight despite allowing its fewest points of the season.
John Wall added eight of his 18 points in the fourth quarter, but shot 6 for 25 (24 percent) and missed a pair of late free throws that opened the door for Toronto.
“We felt like we let this one slip away,” Wall said. “But you can kind of deal with this, the way we competed. And that’s the most important thing.”
Ending a miserable four-game, five-day stretch, Washington shot under 36 percent from the floor in three straight games, including 32.9 percent (27 of 82) on Saturday.
“We’ve got to cut the negativity we have coming from players, coaches, staff, media,” said Marcin Gortat, who finished with 16 points and 10 rebounds. “It’s not even fun coming here anymore. So much negativity. I understand we’re losing games, but (darn).”
Washington failed to hit a field goal over the final 4:24 to fall to 1-8 in its last nine regular-season games against Toronto. The Wizards did sweep the Raptors in the first round of last season’s Eastern Conference playoffs.
Washington looked headed to victory until Wall’s free throw misses. Then following a timeout, DeRozan curled around a screen to get the inbounds, drove toward the baseline and kicked the ball out to Joseph in the left corner. Joseph rose and sank his 3-pointer as time expired.
“The play was for DeMar to catch it and get something quick,” said Raptors coach Dwane Casey. “He had the presence of mind in a very short period of time to make a play and Cory works on that shot tremendously.”
DUDLEY DOES RIGHT
Wizards F Jared Dudley earned his first start of the season after scoring 19 points in Friday’s loss at Boston and performing with an attitude coach Randy Wittman said others had lacked.
“He was flying around out there like a crazed animal, and all of the sudden good things happen,” Wittman said.
Raptors: C Bismack Biyombo had a season-high 16 rebounds. ... The Raptors improved to 5-2 in the first game against a team they lost to in playoff series to the previous season.
Wizards: Washington had only 10 healthy players. C Nene sat with a strained calf after playing only two minutes on Friday, and G Gary Neal sat out with a strained groin. ... F Drew Gooden’s five-game absence is also because of a calf strain, Wittman said.
Raptors: Host Phoenix on Sunday.
Wizards: Visit Cleveland on Tuesday.