TORONTO -- Considering it was only his fifth game back after missing more than two months following arthroscopic knee surgery, John Wall's 23-point, 15-assist, four-steal, two-block performance in Saturday's playoff opener against the Toronto Raptors sounds masterful in theory.
Unfortunately for Wall's Washington Wizards, the All-Star point guard's shooting woes were a factor in dropping Game 1 of their Eastern Conference quarterfinal series, as Wall made just two of his 10 attempts at the rim as part of a 6-of-20 shooting night overall.
As he sat courtside Tuesday morning at the Air Canada Centre, reflecting on Game 1, Wall suggested that uncalled fouls were at least partly to blame.
"I think a couple of them, I did get fouled on," Wall said of his uncharacteristic eight misses from point-blank range, adding that the officials admitted to him at halftime they had already missed two or three calls.
"I'd rather you not tell me about it, just like the last two minutes report," Wall said. "Me as a player, I've got to do a better job of just not worrying about it - fouls or contact - just try to finish my plays like I usually do. I wasn't looking for (fouls) at all. I just felt like when I got to the basket at times, that's when I got fouled. Only time I'd really say I didn't get fouled was the one time in transition, when Kyle (Lowry) jumped with verticality. That was a great defensive play. But the one I had before that in transition (when DeMar DeRozan stopped him), I felt like I got fouled."
Wall's backcourt mate, Bradley Beal, agreed Tuesday that the Raptors got away with some holding and grabbing in Game 1, and Wall noted that watching some of the other playoff action around the Association only added to his frustration.
"It's always something new when it comes to me. Then I watch other games, and notice guys get the same type of calls," said Wall. "A ref that reffed our game (Saturday) and reffed yesterday's game (between Philadelphia and Miami) is calling something that's ticky-tack (on Monday)."
It should be noted, however, that Wall got to the free-throw line 10 times Saturday during a game in which no one else attempted more than four free throws, and his free-throw attempt rate (free throws per field goal attempt) of 50 percent far exceeded his regular-season FTA rate of 36.1 percent.
"There's nothing I can do. As a basketball player, I can't make excuses," Wall said. "I've just got to do a better job of finishing plays."
Game 2 between the Raptors and Washington tips off Tuesday night in Toronto.