The Wizards returned home to the Verizon Center for the first time since their February 10th loss to the Miami Heat. Tonight’s opponent, the Sacramento Kings, provided an opportunity for the Wizards to go into the All-Star break on a winning note. However, an all too common second half collapse allowed the Kings to come back and win 115 to 107.
Now on to the Bullets Points:
- Two minutes into the game Trevor Booker got into foul trouble with two quick fouls, and less than a minute into the second half he picked up his fourth foul. Due to Jan Vesely’s stomach virus and only one minute of playing time, Booker assumed the role of foul specialist with his four fouls in 17 minutes.
- The Wizards got off to a hot start in the 1st quarter and led 34 to 29 through the first 12 minutes. In the first quarter John Wall led the charge with 12 points, 3 assists, 3 rebounds, 2 blocks, and one steal.
- Rashard Lewis managed to pass up an open lay-up in the first quarter after a rebound. Instead he opted to pass it back out. Rashard Lewis’ incompetence reaches new levels each and every night it seems.
- The Wizards were bad defensively all night, and the first quarter saw Tyreke Evans score on lay-ups on four straight Kings possessions.
- Through two quarters the Wizards were easily the better team. They were making shots, running in transition, and outworking the Kings, and found themselves with an eight point at halftime.
- Along with John Wall, Jordan Crawford was the primary bright spot for the Wizards. This is becoming a trend now too. In 34 minutes off the bench, he had 32 points on 12 of 19 from the field and 3 of 6 from thee point range. This was the fourth game in the last five that Jordan has had a field goal percentage of at least 50%.
- The Wizards tonight used their three guard line-up a lot tonight, largely due to the ineffectiveness of the small forwards — Chris Singleton and Rashard Lewis. The line-up was effective offensively scoring the basketball, but the downside was seen on the offensive glass where the Wizards gave up 18 offensive rebounds to the Kings. This isn’t surprising given the Kings are 5th in the NBA in rebounding and first in offensive rebounding.
- “Jimmer Mania” was in full force tonight at the Verizon Center. While his fans were impressive in their numbers tonight, Jimmer Fredette wasn’t so much. When on defense, he was abused by Jordan Crawford. At one point he was posted up by Crawford, Fredette fouled him, and Jordan Crawford got the and-1 call. On the offensive end he was mainly a non-factor. He had 8 points on 2 of 5 shooting, 3 of 3 from the free-throw line, and he made one of his two three-point attempts.
- John Wall fell just short of a triple-double with his 21 points, 11 assists, and nine rebounds.
- Where to start with JaVale McGee…? This is a pretty good place to start. JaVale swatted an obvious goal tend into the eighth row. Add in his poor job on the glass — even though had 10 rebounds — allowing the Kings far too many opportunities for tip-ins. He also played poor defense on DeMarcus Cousins, had another goal tend that allowed for a three point play, and had two turnovers — one on an obvious push-off foul. After that foul he proceeded to go up for an emphatic slam, only to miss in typical JaVale McGee fashion.
- Remember last Tuesday’s game in Portland? Nick Young longs for days like that. It was another bad shooting night for “The Cuddler” to the tune of 6/23 from the field. He also had the worst plus-minus for the Wizards tonight with a -15. But hey, he did have one assist tonight.
- Kevin Seraphin played 23 minutes tonight. It was the first time since February 6th vs. Toronto when he got over 20 minutes of playing time. He had 6 points and 6 rebounds, with three fouls for good measure.
- Both the Kings and Wizards had 27 attempts from the free throw line. The difference? The Kings made 25 of them, and the Wizards made only 16.
- Another major difference came in the paint, once again. The Kings scored 64 of their 115 points in the paint. The Wizards only scored 38 of their points in the painted area.
- Misleading stat of the night: Rashard Lewis had a plus-minus of +5.
- Kings’ guards Isaiah Thomas and Marcus Thornton scorched the Wizards tonight. The rookie Isaiah Thomas (the last player selected in last June’s draft) had 18 points and 6 assists and Marcus “The Bayou Bomber” Thornton turned it on in the second half to finish 22 points to help aid he Kings’ second half comeback when Tyreke Evans sat out with foul trouble.
The Wizards (7-26) have a six day break until their next game next Tuesday in Milwaukee. We will get to see John Wall in Friday’s Rising Stars Challenge and Saturday night’s Skills Competition between now and then though.
Enjoy your All-Star break.