Raptors vs. Wizards Odds & Picks: These Trends Say Toronto Will Cover
Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images. Pictured: Pascal Siakam.
- The Toronto Raptors head to D.C. for a matchup with the Wizards, who are coming off a rare win.
- Toronto has feasted on teams under .500 this season, and Pascal Siakam is facing a mouthwatering matchup.
- Roberto Arguello lays out why he is backing the Raptors on Wednesday night.
Raptors vs. Wizards Odds
|Moneyline||-240 / +198|
|Time||7 p.m. ET|
|TV||NBA League Pass|
|Odds as of Tuesday night and via FanDuel.|
The Raptors face the Wizards for the first time this season on Wednesday night in Washington, D.C.
The Raptors are coming off of a 128-113 win over the Grizzlies on Monday and have won four of their last five games overall. The Wizards, meanwhile, beat the Bullsin Chicago on Monday and with a win over Toronto, Washington will tie its longest winning streak of the season — all of two games.
If the Raptors hope to win and cover as road favorites, they need Pascal Siakam to step up to help their backcourt duo of Kyle Lowry and Pascal Siakam. Norman Powell also needs to continue scoring efficiently as OG Anunoby (calf) is questionable and Patrick McCaw (knee) remains out.
The Raptors also need Siakam to return to his All-Star form. Siakam’s career-low effective field goal percentage of 48.9% ranks in the 16th percentile among bigs as he hasn’t been particularly accurate anywhere on the court. Per Cleaning The Glass, Siakam ranks in the 39th percentile in shooting percentage at the rim (64%), in the 54th percentile in midrange accuracy (43%) and in the 12th percentile in 3-point accuracy (27%).
Siakam needs to find his shooting stroke and drive to the rim more often. With 40% of his shot attempts coming at the rim, he ranks in the 35th percentile among bigs, while his 38% of midrange attempts rank in the 78th percentile.
Siakam will have a great chance to play well against a Wizards team that is 28th in defensive efficiency and playing without its best rim protector in Thomas Bryant, who is out for the season. Siakam will need to be aggressive getting to the rim since the Wizards allow the fewest shots at the rim and the most midrange shot attempts among NBA defenses.
A big night for Fred VanVleet and Pascal Siakam vs. the Grizzlies 🔥
➤ Vanvleet: 32 Pts, 9 Ast, 8-14 FG
➤ Siakam: 32 Pts, 6 Ast, 11-18 FG pic.twitter.com/F5LcYxhyaN
— NBA on ESPN (@ESPNNBA) February 9, 2021
If Siakam can get to the rim, he should have success against the Washington defense that ranks among the bottom eight teams in the NBA in shooting percentage allowed at the rim, in the midrange (where they are dead last), and on 3-pointers.
While Siakam hasn’t scored efficiently this season, he is still making winning plays, averaging career highs in rebounds (7.8) and assists (4.6). Siakam has played his best basketball lately, scoring 30 or more points in four of his last six games.
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The Wizards have gotten phenomenal play all season from Bradley Beal, who leads the NBA with 34.8 points per game. To beat the Raptors, they will need Russell Westbrook to step up while Beal continues to score at a high level so the Wizards can keep up with Fred VanVleet and Lowry.
Highest PPG in a season since 1990:
— CBS Sports HQ (@CBSSportsHQ) February 5, 2021
Despite ranking in the 97th percentile in usage rating among point guards (35.1%), Westbrook has ranked in just the 24th percentile in points per 100 shot attempts (98.2), per Cleaning The Glass. Westbrook is third in the NBA with 9.5 assists per game, but he also leads the NBA with 4.8 turnovers per game.
According to Cleaning The Glass, he is taking a career-low 29% of his shot attempts at the rim this year while attempting 50% of his shots from the midrange (the second-most in his career). This is troubling for the Wizards as Westbrook ranks in the 89th percentile among point guards in shooting percentage at the rim (64%), while he ranks in the 24th percentile in midrange shooting percentage (34%).
If Westbrook is aggressive getting to the rim, it should give Wizards shooters like Davis Bertans, Deni Avdija and Garrison Matthews plenty of open looks against a Raptors team that allows the fifth-most 3-point attempts in the NBA. Toronto also is allowing opponents to shoot the ninth-highest percentage on from beyond the arc (38.4%).
The Raptors are 3-9 this season against teams with winning records, but they are 8-4 against teams with losing records.
Expect that trend to continue, especially if Anunoby is available.
The Raptors have also won consistently against the spread as BetLabs shows they have covered seven out of 11 times as a single-digit favorite against teams with losing records this season.
Take the Raptors -5.5 on FanDuel to cover with value down to -7. VanVleet, Siakam and Powell have all played their best basketball of the season over the last two weeks, as the Raptors have won four of their last five, and that should continue against this poor Wizards defense.
If Anunoby returns, that will also be a big boost for the Raptors on both ends of the floor with his efficient 3-point shooting and lockdown perimeter defense. If he isn’t active, Siakam will continue to see a higher usage and there is enough value on FanDuel’s Player Performance Double on him to score 20-plus points and the Raptors to win at +136 (with value down to +120).
Pick: Raptors -5.5 (up to -7)