After beating the New York Knicks in a hard fought game last night, the Washington Wizards were asked to bounce back quickly and compete against the Chicago Bulls the following day. Needless to say, the Wizards didn’t look very energized and the Bulls went on to get a fairly easy victory, 96-78.
Washington scored just 26 points in the first half. Chicago scored 28 in the first quarter. That’s really, really bad.
It was virtually impossible for the Wizards to dig themselves out of that hole, but John Wall helped them cut a 26 point deficit to just 11 in the third quarter and it obviously wasn’t enough. Wall scored 20 points to go along side 6 assists, but was unable to stop D.J. Augustin from erupting for 25 points off the bench. It seemed like Augustin hit a big shot whenever the Wizards gained some momentum and it certainly didn’t help that Joakim Noah was controlling the rebounds, not allowing the Wizards to get much of an advantage from that standpoint.
Besides Wall, Marcin Gortat was the only one who showed up to play for Washington. Although Noah scored 21 points on 9-13 shooting and grabbed 12 rebounds, Gortat countered 19 of his own points and 8 rebounds on Polish Heritage Night. Washington shot less than 40% from the field and the Wall/Gortat duo wasn’t enough to prevent the blowout. Bradley Beal struggled to find his shot, Trevor Ariza made just 1 of his 9 attempts and the bench was pretty much nonexistent.
With tonight’s loss against Chicago and the Charlotte Bobcats’ win over the Cleveland Cavaliers in overtime, the Wizards will have to find a way to get some crucial wins before the postseason begins. They’ll play against the Bobcats on Wednesday night, in a game that could be considered their most important contest of the season.
It would’ve been nice to see the team compete after getting a thrilling victory against the Knicks, and although no excuse is valid at this point, it’s tough to beat the best defensive team in the NBA on the second night of a back-to-back.
Washington has to put this game behind them and move on to the next one.
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