Heading into Tuesday’s matchup against the Dallas Mavericks, many fans of the Washington Wizards were anxious about Kyle Kuzma and his willingness to resign. Following a report by Josh Robbins of The Athletic where we learned that Kuzma is open to resigning with the Wiz, much of that concern turned towards the upcoming game.
Kuzma was always going to be the focus of this game, especially following the Rui Hachimura trade which seems to have been made in order to resign the possible All-Star. The injury to Kristaps Porzingis only amplified that extra pressure to perform. Every fan had their eyes on him.
The first half was almost entirely a team effort as Bradley Beal led the team in scoring with 11 points, yet the Wizards outscored the Mavericks 65-60. In the first 24 minutes of action, while they may have had the lead, Kyle Kuzma had only contributed six points. Extremely underwhelming for a player who needed to have a big game.
Then the second half hit. Almost as if a switch flipped in his head in the break, Kyle Kuzma started playing with a newfound aggression, shooting 17 times in the second half alone. He ended the game with 30 points, 24 of which came in the second half.
This strong performance would be just what the doctor ordered as the Wizards would hold off the Mavericks by only a single point, despite some players seeming like they wanted to lose.
His strong performance was supported by a 22-point outing from Bradley Beal and a 15-point double-double from Deni Avdija, continuing his streak of strong performances playing the power forward.
If it weren’t for Kyle Kuzma’s heroic shot making in the second half, this game would have been lost for the Washington Wizards. Luckily, he saved the day and powered them to victory once again.