Washington Wizards Sneak Out Of New York With A Win
It wouldn’t have been a Washington Wizards victory if it didn’t involve some sort of dramatic ending.
After botching a 19 point lead against the Charlotte Hornets, the Wizards were awfully close to repeating that dreadful ending against the New York Knicks on Tuesday night. They led by double-digits, made over 80 percent of their 3-point shots in the first half and could’ve ran away with the victory. Then they were seconds away from potentially losing.
John Wall and Bradley Beal were both fantastic. The team is going to go as far as their star back court could take them. The problem is, the two guards both played as good as you possibly could ask them to play…and the Washington Wizards almost still lost.
Wall recorded 28 points and 17 assists with just a single turnover.
Given how bad the Knicks’ guard rotation is, we all expected Wall to have a powerful game, but this was arguably his most complete performance of the season. He abused Jose Calderon. Once he got hot, Wall hit two clutch jumpers and put the game away with free throws.
While his points and assists numbers might look great, I was most impressed by his low turnover rate. He dominated the ball all game long and only coughed it up once. That’s extremely impressive, and quite frankly, surprising.
Beal, who’s finally back in the starting lineup, added 26 points and four steals.
When he’s healthy, Beal is undoubtedly a top-5 shooting guard in the NBA.
He’s shot the ball so effortlessly from deep and it’s gotten to a point where you can expect every 3-point attempt to drop. He also knocked down a couple of key buckets, but couldn’t close the game with free throws. For someone with such a beautiful stroke, Beal needs to start shooting it better from the line.
All of the starters scored double-digit points.
Jared Dudley, in particular, was super impressive in the first half. He looked like a taller, chubbier version of Stephen Curry for a bit. Dudley hit a spot-up three and immediately followed it up with a three in transition.
Washington will live and die with their 3-point shooting. They thrived in the first half and almost died in the second. Kristaps Porzingis took advantage of his size and lit the team up in the third quarter. Still, I thought they did a good job of fronting Carmelo Anthony and denying him position near the elbows.
If Langston Galloway connected on the final 3-point attempt, tonight’s recap would’ve been ending differently. At this point, any win is a good win. Washington will take on the Bucks on Thursday night.