Tough break and an even worse loss. Washington had all the momentum to win this game but ultimately choked in the final two minutes. As you can say, Washington’s luck had finally caught up with them. The Wizards played great basketball in February by winning 9 games to match a franchise record but I would be biased if I didn’t acknowledge that a few of them were very lucky.
Who has Washington’s rabbit’s foot? Give it back!
Washington led by as much as 8 with 3 minutes left in the game. Washington’s inability to close out games has been a gasoline trail and Boston struck the match by scoring 7 unanswered points to trail by 1 with 1:34 left.
The Wizards score on back-to-back drives including a beautiful left-hand layup by Bradley Beal to put Washington up 5 with 45 seconds left. Beal scores 14 of his 46 points in the 4th to try and put Washington on his back once again but Boston and the Basketball God’s had other plans for the Wizards.
Remember, Jayson Tatum? The guy who went 3/14 from the field and only scored 6 points in 23 minutes in the match-up two weeks ago? Well, the 2021 All-Star pick put that game behind him and showed the league why he is one of the top performers in the league.
Tatum scored 11 of his 31 points in the 4th quarter including a reverse layup that would ultimately change the outcome of the game. Tatum splits the defenders with an impressive reverse layup that puts Boston down by 1 with 14 seconds left. Tatum’s awkward landing causes him to fall on the floor and slide near the right side of the baseline.
Here is where things get interesting…
Russell Westbrook inbounds the ball to Bradley Beal in the same spot that Tatum just fell in. With Boston down one, anyone would think that their immediate reaction would be to foul. Well, Beal gets double-teamed on the baseline, tries to gain a little space, and slips on Jayson Tatum’s sweat from the previous play. The refs blow the whistle saying Beal steps out of bounds and Boston regains possession to take the lead for the W.
“I should have called the timeout,” Brooks said.
“Most of the time they will trap you and foul you and put you on the free-throw line. Unfortunately, he slipped on a wet spot. That’s on me. I should have called the timeout.”
Beal responds to the final seconds saying, “That was some of the goofiest s— I’ve ever seen in my life.”
“Slipped out of bounds, gave Tatum three layups at the end of the game.”
This was completely unfortunate but Washington should have not been in this predicament to begin with. If this team wants to have any hopes of making a play-in tournament or clench a playoff spot, they must capitalize in the final minutes of games.
Overall, this was a very disappointing loss.
Beal’s Scoring Curse
Now, I am not the most superstitious person but something is in the air when Bradley Beal scores 40 or more points and it is not a good thing. In last night’s loss, Beal scored 46 points on 16 for 29 field goal shooting, shot 50 percent from 3 point range, and made 11 of 12 shots from the charity strike.
Unfortunately, that impressive scoring effort was the 11th straight loss for Washington when Beal scores 40 points or more. Beal currently holds the longest streak in the NBA for doing so and I cannot imagine that he’s happy about that.
At this point, someone needs to cut Beal off when he starts nearing that 40 point mark. Not really but that stat is absolutely insane and should never happen.
Davis Bertans broke franchise history last night and surpassed Bradley Beal’s record set in 2017. Bertans is now the franchise record holder for hitting at least two 3’s in 16 consecutive games. Last night, Davis scored 20 points and made 5 out of 7 three-pointers in 26 minutes. In all fairness, free throws and Bertans are the reasons why the Washington Wizards did not get blown out in the first half.
Wizards started the game off 0/7 from the field and 0/3 from 3-point range in the first seven minutes. Washington found themselves down by 10 early and Davis hit the first FG of the game 5:45 left in the first. Thank goodness for the Latvian Laser.
Davis was pretty frustrated with the loss as well. “We’re all pissed off after the loss, of course. This was a game we could take.”
In February, Davis Bertans shot 43.4% from 3 point range and is slowly bumping that season 3 point percentage back to 40%.