Kyle Kuzma expresses deep frustration with the Wizards defense

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The Washington Wizards suffered a yet another deflating loss last night, this time against the Orlando Magic. The Wizards' league-worst defense was the main reason behind the 139-120 loss, as they allowed 133.7 points per 100 possessions. Kyle Kuzma was rightfully disappointed with the team's efforts in his post-game interview.

Speaking to Josh Robbins of The Athletic, Kuzma said: "We can't guard a stop sign. That's kind of really what it boils down to. We let anybody get whatever they want on us. So, until we change that, then that's probably going to be the result."

The lack of defensive effort and intensity has been a continuing problem for the Washington Wizards all season. The game against the Orlando Magic was no different.

Despite being one of the surprise teams in the league with a 12-5 record going into last night, the Magic offense has been below-average all season. They beat teams with their defense, size, and physicality. They have an offensively limited backcourt with Anthony Black and Jalen Suggs, and are an overall young, inexperienced team. However, the Wizards made them look like an unstoppable, dominant offensive force, letting them score at a season-best clip.

Yes, the Orlando Magic shot unsustainably well from three, hitting 17 of 27 attempts. Yet, the Wizards' defensive problems went deeper than that.

The pick-and-roll defense is non-existent. The Wizards bigs including Daniel Gafford couldn't provide any physicality or resistance in the paint. The Orlando Magic got to their spots and attacked the rim with ease, converting 61% of their field goal attempts.

No offense to Orlando Magic: they are a very good team, especially on the defensive end. Yet, a team that starts Goga Bitadze at center, and Anthony Black at point guard shouldn't be scoring 139 points on another NBA team. If the Wizards have trouble guarding a Franz Wagner-Mo Wagner pick-and-roll, a Cole Anthony isolation, or a Joe Ingles drive, they will not be able to stop anyone else.

Kuzma is right, getting absolutely lit up by the short-handed Orlando Magic is the NBA equivalent of not being able to guard a stop sign. That is embarrassing. It's up to coach Wes Unseld Jr. and the rest of the team to have a better showing when they face Orlando again tomorrow.

Next. Kyle Kuzma is having a career season. Kyle Kuzma is having a career season. dark