The biggest takeaway from Jordan Poole's offensive explosion

Cleveland Cavaliers v Washington Wizards
Cleveland Cavaliers v Washington Wizards / Patrick Smith/GettyImages

In Sunday's 115-104 loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers, the Washington Wizards brought Jordan Poole off the bench for just the third time this season. Although some fans disagree with the decision, Wizards coach Brian Keefe and the organization made the adjustment in hopes to it could make Poole his most effective, which he showed promise of against Cleveland.

The 24-year-old was subbed in just over five minutes into the contest after rookie guard Bilal Coulibaly suffered a right pelvis contusion on an awkward fall underneath the basket. Losing Coulibaly to injury only further handicapped a Wizards team that ruled out Corey Kispert and Deni Avdija before tip-off.

Poole's unscheduled entrance began strong with seven first-quarter points, shooting three-of-four from the field in the quarter. By halftime, Poole had racked up 17 points, knocking down three of his six three-point tries in the first half.

Jordan Poole's production the key in Wizards' nail biter

When the fourth quarter began, the Wizards trailed the Cavaliers by a score of 87-80, a deficit the Wizards quickly surmounted with the help of Poole's most effective stretch this season.

Over roughly two minutes, Poole converted on four consecutive attempts, including three from beyond the arc. The streak sparked an 11-0 Wizards run to give Washington their largest lead since the 8-minute mark of the second quarter. Coach Keefe's rotational adjustment was working to perfection.

The Wizards exhibited high energy due to the staggered offensive rotation that allowed both Kyle Kuzma and Poole to pour in points in bunches. Staggering Kuzma and Poole allowed Washington to keep the game close throughout, maintaining the consistent effort the Wizards needed to compete against Cleveland.

Although the sample size is small, it is worth noting that Poole has improved his numbers across the board with each game since taking on his new role. Against Cleveland, Poole finished the night with a season-high 31 points on 11-of-21 shooting, counting six-made baskets from three-point range in the game.

Going forward, it will be important for coach Keefe to continue tinkering with the rotations. However, for now, it seems the Wizards may have found something in staggering their two stars.

Latest NBA mock draft shows Wizards aiming for an exciting new guard. Latest NBA mock draft shows Wizards aiming for an exciting guard. dark. Next