April 22, 2018

Washington Wizards Game 9 Review: Beal Returns, Wiz Fall To Mavs

BEAL SCORES 21, WIZARDS LOSE TO MAVERICKS

The Washington Wizards suffered their first home-loss of the season to the Dallas Mavericks on Wednesday night, 105-102, but they did return one of their biggest stars in Bradley Beal.

With 4:52 left in the first quarter, Beal – who missed the Wizards’ first nine games with a wrist injury – entered the game for the first time since preseason.

About a minute later, Beal got his first shot: a three pointer that missed the mark. While he didn’t exactly begin his regular season with a bang, he was back and not afraid to shoot the basketball.

As the clock wound down in the opening period, Beal dropped his first bucket for Washington. Thanks to an assist from Marcin Gortat, Beal knocked down a 20-foot jumper to put the Wizards ahead 25-19.

The second period opened up with Beal being his usual self. After driving to the hoop to make a layup, he followed that up by making a three-pointer. Just a few minutes later, he was substituted for Rasual Butler, but his brief flash on the court was productive and promising.

Coming off the bench, Beal scored a team-high 21 points in 26 minutes, recording three assists and three rebounds, as well.

Entering the fourth quarter, the Wizards found themselves down by three, 76-73. After seeing the deficit grow to seven, Washington went on an 8-0 run to take an 85-84 lead. As the minutes wound down, the elevated play of J.J. Barea (14 points) and the Wizards inability to knock down a shot proved to be their demise.

In the final 2:36, the Wizards managed just four points on layups by Beal and Gortat. Meanwhile, two clutch three pointers by Barea and Dirk Nowitzki – who returned after leaving the game with an ankle injury – that kept the game out of reach.

As the Wizards suffered their first home-loss of the season, they drop to 7-3 after losing a close game to the Mavericks. Next up, they’ll stay home for a Friday night showdown with the Cleveland Cavaliers. Tipoff is set for 8 p.m. ET.

GAME NOTES

  1. John Wall registered his seventh double-double, and third in a row, this season with 11 points and 11 rebounds.
  2. Coming off the bench, Bradley Beal showed plenty of spark for the Wizards. He dribbled the ball well, passed the ball well and his shot looked solid. All in all, I think the wrist is fine.
  3. Paul Pierce and Marcin Gortat both finished the game with 17 points for the Wizards and Gortat tied Wall Kris Humphries with six rebounds.
About Brian Skinnell

Brian Skinnell is a Staff Writer for District Sports Page covering the Redskins, Nationals and college football. He is a born-and-raised follower of Washington, D.C. sports, “The” Ohio State Buckeyes and auto racing. A graduate of Shepherd University in December of 2014, he has a degree in Recreation and Leisure Studies with a Concentration in Sports Communications. Prior to joining District Sports Page (for his second stint), he spent time with Rant Sports, Yahoo Sports and the Washington Redskins. For his day job, he is an Editor for Team Velocity Marketing. Follow him on Twitter @Brian_Skinnell.

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