How Richaun Holmes has won over Washington Wizards fans

Orlando Magic v Washington Wizards
Orlando Magic v Washington Wizards / Patrick Smith/GettyImages

In Friday's win over the Charlotte Hornets, Richaun Holmes continued to provide for the Washington Wizards in a tough spot. For the second game in a row, starting center Marvin Bagley III was ruled out due to back spasms, opening up an opportunity that Holmes took full advantage of.

During the later stages of Washington's 127-115 loss to the Utah Jazz on Monday, Bagley III was removed from the game, leaving head coach Brian Keefe to deploy his small-ball lineup. The move ultimately cost the Wizards the game, surrendering a 16-2 run over the final five minutes of the contest.

Ahead of Wednesday's return to the District against the Orlando Magic, Keefe opted for the small-ball lineup to start the game. However, poor defensive switching and a lack of size on the interior allowed the Magic to dismantle the Wizards' small-ball strategy late in the game. In the 25 minutes Keefe sent out his lone center, Holmes took care of business, scoring 12 points and recording a +11 plus-minus off the bench.

Richaun Holmes shines in his first start for Wizards

Holmes' performance on Wednesday inspired confidence from Wizards fans. With Bagley III ruled out well in advance of Friday's clash with the Hornets, I took to social media to poll fans on whether they would like to see the small-ball lineup get more playing time or give the starting nod to one of the back-ups. The majority of fans felt it was time to turn to the eight-year NBA veteran.

Coach Keefe and the Wizards shared a similar mindset, giving Holmes his first start since the trade that sent him from Dallas to the District. The decision was well-received by the fanbase and paid off in a big way, earning the Wizards their first win since January 29th.

Holmes logged 36 minutes against the Hornets on Friday, posting a double-double with 14 points and 11 rebounds. His +23 plus-minus was a team best, recording both a block and a steal while shooting a perfect 5-of-5 from the field.

According to the Stathead database, Holmes is one of only nine players in NBA history to achieve each of those statistics in a single game. His contemporaries include superstar centers such as Nikola Jokic, Dwight Howard, and DeAndre Jordan. Holmes and Lamar Odom are the only two players listed to make each of their free throw attempts in their respective games.


Game Date

Minutes Played

Points (Shooting)


Richaun Holmes

March 8, 2024


14 (5-of-5)


Andre Drummond

February 6, 2023


21 (9-of-9)


Jakob Poeltl

February 12, 2021


14 (7-of-7)


Rudy Gobert

January 8, 2020


16 (5-of-5)


Nikola Jokic

October 20, 2018


35 (11-of-11)


DeAndre Jordan

December 31, 2014


14 (6-of-6)


Dwight Howard

March 27, 2014


17 (6-of-6)


Lamar Odom

April 15, 2008


15 (5-of-5)


Andris Biedrins

November 14, 2006


14 (5-of-5)


As the Wizards continue their way towards the end of the regular season, it will serve them well to rely on Holmes' play at center. Washington begins a four-game road trip on Sunday when the Wizards will face the Miami Heat at the Kaseya Center.

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