October 21, 2020

Washington Wizards Game 79 Review: Wizards diminish chances of home playoff series after being blown out by Nets

The Wizards came into the Barclays Center riding a four game win streak and sniffing out a chance to get back into the top four seeds in the Eastern Conference. With John Wall getting his second straight game off after playing in 208 consecutive games, the Wizards were dominated as the Nets won 117-80.

The Wizards early five point lead quickly disappeared as they became stagnantly inefficient without Wall as their floor general. Washington consistently were forced into difficult shots late in the shot clock or turned the ball over, which Brooklyn translated into 11 points. The Nets went on an 18-3 run early in the game and followed that up with an 11-4 run which featured Brook Lopez in the paint. Lopez hit 7 field goals and heavily contributed to the Nets 20 points in the paint leading to a 31-14 deficit after a quarter of play.

The second unit for the Wizards could not do much better as the Nets started out on a 10-2 run. After later being down as many as 27, the Wizards begin to take advantage of easy buckets before the Nets defense was set leading to a 13-2 run. After starting the game 0-5 from the field, Bradley Beal made his next six shots in a personal battle against defensive star Markel Brown. Unfortunately the Wizards were down 54-38 at halftime with the Nets continuing their hot shooting.

Bradley Beal started the third quarter with a couple clutch three pointers, which helped the Wizards cut the deficit to 10. The Nets were able to stretch the lead back up to 18, but behind the strong post presence from Marcin Gortat the Wizards chipped back away to a 10 point deficit again. Gortat was 9 of 10 from the field for 20 points through the first three quarters. The Wizards could not get the deficit to single digits as multiple calls went against them and they entered the final quarter needing to close a 75-62 gap.

The Nets started the quarter on a 13-0 run to put the Wizards out of the game for good. This run was extended to 20-1 as Washington saw themselves down points 32. Both Nene and Marcin Gortat were checked on by the medical trainers and would not return in the game although neither seems to be major. With a back and forth ending for the fourth quarter in a mini-game of bench players, the Wizards were glad when the game was over, losing 117-80.

Why the Wizards Lost:

  • The Wizards committed 21 turnovers that the Nets cashed into a whopping 38 points, a negative 27 point differential for Washington.
  • The Wizards got no scoring from individuals not named Beal or Gortat. The rest of the team combined for 13-52 shooting from the field and a measly 35 points.
  • The Nets shot the ball with incredible efficiency at a 50.6% mark from the field including 60% from beyond the arc.

The Wizards will welcome in the Atlanta Hawks in their regular season home finale with still a lot to play for. The Hawks have little to play for as they are locked into the #1 seed in the east and may decide to rest some marquee players. Even if the chances for the Wizards to have home court advantage in the first round are slim, it will be important for the Wizards to get something positive going before entering the post season.

About Neil Dalal

Neil Dalal is a Staff Writer for District Sports Page covering the Redskins, Wizards, and Maryland Terrapins. Neil grew up in Silver Spring, MD and attends the University of Maryland. Neil has loved everything related to the Redskins, Wizards, Capitals, and Terrapins since he was eight years old. However, he favors the Orioles, as he started watching baseball before the Expos moved to DC. You can follow Neil on Twitter @NeilDalal96.

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