Third time is a charm, right? Tonight for the Wizards it was. In their third preseason game, the team went to Cleveland and pulled out their first victory of the 2012-2013 season. But let’s get straight to some game notes and Bullets Points.
- Randy Wittman changed up the starting line-up for tonight’s game. He benched A.J. Price, Jordan Crawford, and Trevor Ariza and in their place started Jannero Pargo, Bradley Beal, and Martell Webster.
- Kevin Seraphin started once again but was limited to six minutes before leaving the game with a strained calf.
- One of the benched starters, Trevor Ariza, continues to play poorly. His jump shot is not falling; he looks unsure of himself on the court; and he’s not fitting into the flow of the offense. Maybe he’s just getting acclimated to his new teammates or maybe he’s the next Rashard Lewis.
- Tonight’s starting point guard, Jannero Pargo, “contributed” six turnovers in 16 minutes. What started as a wide-open competition for the starting point guard spot has turned into a mess with Shelvin Mack leading the race.
- Speaking of Mack, he played 20 minutes and was a steadying force on the floor with 9 points (4/6 FG), three assists, and most importantly, zero turnovers.
- As usual, Jordan Crawford is a mixed bag of good and bad. The good? He had seven assists and posted a plus-14 in his 31 minutes. The bad? He went 5-for-16 from the floor and turned the ball over five times. Randy Wittman early in training camp said that Crawford was practicing better than he ever did before, but now it all seems like just talk. In all honestly, “J-Craw” is the same player he always has been — an inconsistent, polarizing, frustrating, potential microwave scorer.
- Bradley Beal is as advertised. He’s the real deal, as his Twitter handle states. The game isn’t too big for him and he just “gets it.’ In his match-up with fellow high-lottery pick, Dion Waiters, Beal owned him. Bradley Beal put the clamps down defensively against Waiters stealing the ball from him once and forcing him to chuck up an errant shot as the shot clock ran down. Wizards fans, be excited.
- Jan Vesely was awful, and then he was good. He improved as the game wore and began to look more and more like the confident player we saw in the summer league. He’s still got to do a better job on the boards though, as Tristan Thompson dominated the Wizards big-men to start the game on the glass. It wasn’t until Shavlik Randolph came in that the Wizards started to box out and grab rebounds. Randolph finished with nine rebounds in 16 minutes.
- Chris Singleton did not play due to a shoulder injury.
- But the hero of tonight’s game was Brian Cook. The fact that I just typed that hurts my head. He hit on three 3-pointers and helped the Wizards keep the lead in the final minutes. What does this mean for his future with the team? Who knows, but probably nothing.
- Here’s tonight’s box score
See you all Monday night in Brooklyn.