December 22, 2014

Washington Wizards Game 21 Review: Beal Beats Buzzer, Magic

BEAL HITS BUZZER BEATER, WALL DROPS DOUBLE-DOUBLE

The Washington Wizards returned to the site of their first victory of the season and left with a similar result, defeating the Orlando Magic at the buzzer in Orlando, 91-89.

With 0.8 seconds left, it seemed as though the Wizards would be heading to overtime for the second straight game. That is, until head coach Randy Wittman drew up a buzzer-beating lob-pass in the huddle during a timeout.

As if it was drawn up in the dirt, Bradley Beal (9 points) rolled to the basket and looked back to Andre Miller for the pass. Miller placed the inbounds-lob-pass with precision accuracy and Beal laid it up and in before the backboard lit up in red. The Wizards stormed the floor in victory, their 15th of the season. [Read more…]

Washington Wizards Game 17 Review: Wiz beat Lakers for 4th straight time

Bradley Beal had 27 points, on 11 of 19 shooting including three 3-pointers, and the Washington Wizards defeated the Los Angeles Lakers 111-95 at Verizon Center.

Beal also had seven assists as the Wizards (12-5) bounced back from a slow start — they trailed by six after the first period — to easily take care of the woeful Lakers squad.

“We’ve got to give some credit to L.A. [Los Angeles],” coach Randy Wittman said about the early deficit. “They shot the heck out of it in the first half and that was really our focus at halftime after looking at some stuff at the half from our defensive stuff.  We challenged a lot of shots that they made and my point to them at half was we can’t get discouraged by that.”

Beal credited an increased defensive pressure that led to the turnaround on offense.

“It was getting stops,” Beal said. “Whenever we get off to leads like that and whenever we excel in the open court and whenever we just get easy looks, it’s always off our defense. It was also us moving the ball on offense and taking what the defense gives us and basically getting the shots that we want. At the end of the day, we wouldn’t be in the position we are in if it wasn’t for our defense.”

John Wall had 17 points and 15 assists for the Wiz, while Marcin Gortat had 21 points and 11 rebounds, Paul Pierce and Rasual Butler added 14 points and Kris Humphries grabbed 20 boards.

Kobe Bryant scored 29 points and Nick Young added 21 for Los Angeles (5-14).

Washington Wizards Game 14 Review: Wiz Fall in Rematch With Cavs

WALL HELD TO SIX POINTS, CAVS BLOW OUT WIZARDS

For the second time in six days, the Washington Wizards took the floor against the Cleveland Cavaliers, dropping the rematch Wednesday night in Cleveland, 113-87.

The second of four games that these two rivals will play this year was a mirror opposite of their first matchup in D.C. last Friday night, which the Wizards (9-5) won in an impressive fashion. [Read more…]

Washington Wizards Game 13 Review: Streaking Hawks top Wiz

NENE SITS WITH INJURY

The Atlanta Hawks defeated the Washington Wizards, 106-102, Tuesday night at the Verizon Center in Washington. The Hawks have won six out of their last eight.

Mike Scott and former Wizard Shelvin Mack led a decisive 24-11 run at the beginning of fourth quarter by scoring 16 straight points to give the Hawks a 13-point lead. The game was tied at 66 going into the fourth quarter. The Wizards hit four late three-pointers to bring the score to its final margin.

The Hawks (7-5) never had a lead of larger than four before they broke it open. The largest Wizards lead was 10, at 22-12.

The Wizards (9-4) committed 25 turnovers. Bradley Beal was guilty of seven of them, while his backcourt mate John Wall turned the ball over six times.

“That was as bad as we could play offensively for whatever reason,” coach Randy Wittman said.”We were trying to do too much, over dribbling, ball sticking, and predetermining no matter what the defense was going to do. We just get in trouble like that. We had a little bit of that the first half in Milwaukee and we were able to come out of that and get it changed in the second half. That was trying to do too much by everyone.”

Bradley Beal was circumspect after the game.

“Yeah. I’m so upset at myself, I’ve never seen myself turn the ball over that many times. I think it is, everybody wants to just try and force it there and try and make a play and sometimes it just doesn’t fall in our favor, it’s a domino effect.”

Jeff Teague led the Hawks with 28 points. Paul Millsap scored 17 points and brought down 11 rebounds. Off the bench, Scott added 17 points, while Mack scored 13.

John Wall led the Wizards with 21 points and 13 assists. Marcin Gortat scored 12 points and contributed 11 rebounds.

Nene missed his first game of the season due to plantar fasciitis.

Washington Wizards Game 11 Review: Wiz dump Cavs on Wall’s big night

WIZARDS SEND CLEVELAND TO LOSING RECORD AFTER 11 GAMES

John Wall scored 28 points, pulled down six rebounds, had seven assists and four steals to lead the Washington Wizards to a 91-78 victory over the Cleveland Cavaliers Friday night at the Verizon Center in Washington. LeBron James and Kyrie Irving led the Cavs with 22 points apiece. The Wizards are now 8-3 overall, 5-1 at home this season. The Cavs went below .500 with their third straight loss.

“He’s [Wall] our leader, man. He’s asked to carry a big load for this ball club. He’s an All-Star. He’s going to do the scoring, he’s going to do the assists, he’s going to be a defender. That is why you are going to see a lot of his jerseys in the stands,” said Wizards forward Paul Pierce.

Washington head coach Randy Wittman was forced to call a timeout with 6:36 left in the first quarter after back-to-back turnovers by Wall and Marcin Gortat led to fast break points by Anderson Varejao and LeBron James, giving the Cavs a 13-8 lead.

Immediately following the timeout, Bradley Beal came into the game for Garrett Temple, as he eases his way back into the starting lineup. Beal instantly triggered fast breaks with back-to-back steals from James and Kyrie Irving, which led to a Wall layup followed by a Wall three-point play to tie the game at 13.

Cleveland head coach David Blatt said about the causes of Cavs’ turnover problems, “Irresponsible play with the ball and bad decisions. I can think of, off the top of my head, five or six clear breaks where we didn’t finish with a shot and that is just not high-level basketball.”

James’s finger roll gave the Cavs their last lead at 21-17 with 2:40 remaining in the first quarter. The Wizards overtook the Cavs for good with a 9-0 run to close the quarter, keyed by Beal’s three-pointer bracketed by a Wall layup and 21-footer. The quarter was punctuated by Tristan Thompson’s goaltending rejection of Otto Porter’s putback with 1.8 seconds left.

The Wizards continued to build their lead into the second quarter. The Cavs called timeout on their possession after Beal’s finger roll gave the Wizards a nine-point lead at 36-27 with 7:40 left before halftime. Paul Pierce’s three-pointer extended the Wizards’ lead to 13 at 48-35. Joe Harris tried to answer with a floating runner in the lane, but was called for a charging foul. The Wizards would carry their 13-point lead into halftime at 55-42.

The Wizards’ biggest lead of the game came when consecutive 20-footers by Wall forced a Cavs timeout with 3:44 left in the third quarter, trailing by 16 at 72-56. The Cavs never mounted a serious comeback bid, not making a basket in the final 9 minutes of the game. The exclamation point came with Beal’s three-pointer with 1:25 left in the game restored a 12-point lead.

“First thing is that guys have to take a good look in the mirror and ask themselves where and how they can impact positively and try to simplify things. You have to look and see if you can make a change or two but not recreate the wheel. You have to stay in there and show grit and get a good day to gain a yard at a time,” said Blatt.

“You know, all year, it’s a long year, every time you have big emotional wins, and you come into the next game, those are the games that are trap games, and that is what I tried to tell the guys. You know those are the games that great teams win, and it feels good and hopefully we can put this win behind us and move on because we have another test on a Milwaukee team that have been playing great,” said Pierce.

Washington Wizards Add Veteran Depth With John Lucas

On Tuesday afternoon, the Washington Wizards announced the signing of veteran guard John Lucas.

The signing of the Oklahoma State product seems to be purely for depth reasons, especially with Bradley Beal expected to miss 6-8 weeks with a wrist injury. Along with Andre Miller, the Wizards now have some solid veteran depth to rely on at the guard position. [Read more…]

Washington Wizards Preseason Game 6 Recap: Wiz Lose Pierce, Fall To Hornets

PAUL PIERCE INJURES KNEE AS WIZARDS FALL TO HORNETS

Taking their first home-loss of the preseason, the Washington Wizards fell to the Charlotte Hornets on Friday night at the Verizon Center, 96-86.

For the second time this preseason, the Wizards took the floor with Charlotte. Last time they went toe-to-toe, they saw Bradley Beal go down with a wrist injury. This time around, another star left the floor early. [Read more…]

Wizards Without Beal, But No Reason To Panic

For the next 6-8 weeks, the Washington Wizards will be without their star shooting guard, Bradley Beal.

After suffering a broken wrist in preseason action against the Charlotte Hornets, Beal – who averaged 11 points in about 26 minutes in the first two preseason games – will be shut down for the next month and some change to recover from the injury. According to The Washington Post, surgery will be needed. [Read more…]

Washington Wizards Exercise Options On Bradley Beal, Otto Porter

Announced by the club Tuesday afternoon, the Washington Wizards have exercised the fourth-year option on Bradley Beal’s contract and third-year option on Otto Porter’s deal.

“Bradley and Otto are both big pieces of the core group of players that we will build around as we continue to improve our team,” said team President Ernie Grunfeld in a press release issued by the team.  “We look forward to them playing significant roles in our success both now and in the future.” [Read more…]

Washington Wizards Add Assistant Coach Howard Eisley

On Thursday afternoon, the Washington Wizards announced via a team press release that they have added Howard Eisley to their assistant coaching staff.

A 12-year pro that ended his playing career in 2006, Eisley has spent the last four years as an assistant with the Los Angeles Clippers. As a player, he averaged 6.5 points, 3.5 assists and 1.7 rebounds. [Read more…]

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