What was supposed to be an eventful game in Rio de Janerio , Brazil turned out to be an awful game of basketball between the Washington Wizards and Chicago Bulls. After having one of the worst starts I’ve seen in quite some time, the Wizards failed to complete their comeback behind their bench’s effort and ultimately fell 83-81 to the Bulls. Here are the Bullet Points:
- Bradley Beal was the only starter to score a bucket for Washington in the first half. Everyone else looked liked they wanted to go home, including John Wall who finished the game with 3 points on 1 made field goal out of nine attempts. Beal looked to shoot off the dribble, and although he didn’t make very many in isolation situations, it was great to see him finally get comfortable creating his own shot. Beal scored 16 points in just over 25 minutes of action.
- Wizards head coach, Randy Wittman, decided to start Trevor Ariza once again despite his awful play during their first preseason game against the Brooklyn Nets. Needless to say, he didn’t look like a starter this afternoon. Ariza made just three of nine shot attempts, but more importantly, he didn’t look in sync with the offense whatsoever. His defensive ability is overrated, and at this point, the Wizards need to consider swapping Ariza with Webster as soon as possible.
- On the other hand, there were points in the game where Martell Webster became the only source of offense for Washington. He scored 15 points on only 8 shot attempts, and his jump shot looked just as good as it did this past season. The Wizards desperately need a surge of offense in their starting lineup, and I have no doubt that Webster could provide that.
- Taj Gibson dominated Washington’s lowly big men tonight, scoring 18 points to go along side 8 rebounds off the Chicago bench. He scored at will, and there was nothing Jan Vesely, Trevor Booker, or Kevin Seraphin could do about it. Joakim Noah didn’t even play tonight, and the Wizards had no chance of stopping Chicago’s big men. Something has to change, and it has to change quickly. If the Wizards are having trouble stopping second string power forwards, how will they defend top-notch All-Stars during the regular season?
- Glen Rice Jr. and Eric Maynor were also bright spots for the Wizards tonight. Like everyone else on the court, their shot wasn’t falling, but they were both pretty productive. Rice looked very good defensively, and scored off the dribble multiple times. Maynor looked more composed than he did on Tuesday, but he still forced the issue. He finished with 8 points and 8 assists off the bench.
- The box score.
It’s a small sample size, but I’m a tad concerned about what I’m seeing from the Wizards thus far. Washington has looked good in stretches, but for the most part, they’ve been rather underwhelming. Their frontcourt has looked awful, and I wouldn’t be surprised if the management makes some calls around the league prior to the start of the season. Of course, I don’t know the thinking behind management, but I’m sure they’re a bit worried about some of the things they’re seeing.
Washington as fallen to 0-2 during preseason, and they’ll meet the Miami Heat on Tuesday in an attempt to redeem themselves.