Washington Wizards: Four numbers from the preseason opener

Washington Wizards Rui Hachimura RJ Barrett (Photo by Ned Dishman/NBAE via Getty Images)
Washington Wizards Rui Hachimura RJ Barrett (Photo by Ned Dishman/NBAE via Getty Images) /
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Washington Wizards Thomas Bryant
Washington Wizards Thomas Bryant (Photo by Stephen Gosling/NBAE via Getty Images) /


The number of points and rebounds by Thomas Bryant in his preseason double-double.

If there was anyone out there apprehensive about the three-year, $25 million deal the Wizards gave Thomas Bryant this summer, he should have silenced them with his performance in the preseason opener.

Bryant was everywhere doing everything last night, and doing it all with that infectious Thomas Bryant energy we have all come to love and expect from the Wizards center. In the second quarter, it was Bryant’s play and enthusiasm that helped lead the Wizards on an impressive 18-3 run.

So much for preseason rust. Bryant picked up right where he left off last season and poured in a 14-point, 14-rebound double-double. The points are nice, and Bryant scored them effectively as always, shooting over 71 percent from inside the three-point line. The rebounds, though, are even more encouraging. Bryant was a force down low last season, there’s no denying that, but he wasn’t always a force on the glass, averaging just 6.3 rebounds per game. His per 36 minutes stats painted a bit of a better and more realistic picture, though. There, he averaged 10.9 rebounds last season.

But either way, 14 boards from Bryant is excellent. Last season, he recorded 14 or more rebounds just four times. Each time he did it, he needed at least 31 minutes of playing time. He needed 39 thrice. Against the Knicks, though, Bryant grabbed 14 rebounds in just 27 minutes. He also had two assists and two blocks.

Next. Three things to watch during the Wizards preseason. dark

Again, it’s just preseason game number one, so take all of this with a grain of salt. Still, it’s encouraging. These Wizards might not be contenders, but they sure are fun.