Washington Wizards: Wall surpasses 5,000 career assists in win over Celtics

WASHINGTON, DC - APRIL 10: John Wall /

The Washington Wizards snapped a four-game losing streak and beat the Boston Celtics in the last home game of the season.

In their last home game of the regular season, the Washington Wizards (43-38) used a great second half to secure a 113-101 win over the Boston Celtics. The win keeps Washington in the running for both the sixth and seventh seeds in the Eastern Conference playoffs.

Wizards guard John Wall (29 points, 13 assists) made history by surpassing 5,000 assists. He’s the youngest active player to have over 10,000 points and 5,000 assists.

Backcourt mate Bradley Beal struggled from the field (6-16) but scored 19 points, while Markieff Morris (13) and Otto Porter Jr. (12) helped pace the team.

The Celtics were led by Jaylen Brown who started off scorching hot and ended with 27 points. But as Washington’s defense tightened on Brown in the second half, the game tilted in the direction of the home team. After trailing 54-52 at the half, the Wizards outscored the Celtics 61-47 in the final 24 minutes

Brown takes control early

To say Washington struggled to defend in the first quarter is an understatement. Their defense was subpar especially when it came to Brown. He silenced the home crowd early, scoring 13 of the first 16 Celtics points. Brown shot 5-for-7 from deep and dropped 21 points in the quarter.

Thanks to Brown, the Wizards would have to climb from an early 30-22 hole after the first quarter.

Wall looks ready for postseason action 

Wall was consistently great the entire game and, besides the early stretch when Brown went berserk, he was easily the best player on the floor. In his last tuneup before the start of the playoffs this weekend, Wall brought life to a sleepy audience by blowing past defenders, knocking down open three-pointers and setting up teammates for wide open looks.

In addition to his big offensive night, his most explosive plays came on the defensive side.

This was one of his game-high three blocks that had the Capital One Arena buzzing.

Wall also led the team with three steals.

It had to be an encouraging sign for folks in the DMV to see the team’s best player putting his imprint on every aspect of the game.

Unselfish Play

Last game, Wizards head coach Scott Brooks criticized his team for “selfish play” in a loss to the bottom-feeding Atlanta Hawks. Tuesday against the second-best team in the east, Brooks’ team responded with 32 assists.

Wall and company kept the ball moving especially in the second half. Backup guard Tomas Satoransky played well, creating plays for others while tallying five assists.

Mike Scott is known for his scoring off the bench, but it was his flip to Beal with just under nine minutes to go in the fourth that set up the game-clinching basket. Beal took the handoff and immediately rose for a three, was fouled in the process, and completed a four-point play that put Washington up 88-74.

Washington still has a chance to improve their playoff seeding when they head to Orlando on Wednesday night to take on the Magic. If they lose, however, they’ll be stuck in the eight spot and have a first-round date with the Toronto Raptors.