Originally written on khandor's sports blog  |  Last updated 2/3/12

What is really at stake in tonight’s Raptors vs Wizards match-up?

This is what the current standings look like in the NBA.

12. Toronto Raptors, 7-16, .304
13. Washington Wizards, 4-18, .182

Given that these 2 teams have already played each other one time this season:

Game 1, Tue Jan 10, in Washington, [Toronto, L]

and that they will be playing 2 more times after this evening:

Game 2, Fri Feb 03, in Toronto
Game 3, Mon Feb 06, in Washington
Game 4, Sun Apr 01, in Toronto

… there is actually more than a good chance that the loser of tonight’s game will eventually finish this season as one of the 5 worst teams in the league and, therefore, secure a relatively high selection in the 2012 NBA Draft Lottery.

To wit …

If you happen to be a die-hard Raptors fan who:

i. Is happy that Toronto had the good fortune to acquire Jonas Valanciunas [C] with the No. 5 [overall] Selection in the 2011 NBA Draft Lottery;

and,

ii. Actually wants to see your favourite team be able to eventually develop into a legitimate contender to win a League Championship, sometime in the not-too-distant future;

then, you best be cheering hard this evening for a victory … by the visiting Wizards … so Toronto actually improves its chances of adding Harrison Barnes [G/F] to its roster next season, as well.

———————————————

PS. As difficult as it may seem, sometimes in life it really is most important that one goes “backwards”, temporarily, so that one can eventually go “forwards”, once again, in a way which authentically significant.

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