Sacramento at Washington
Last night Washington (14-25) fell to the Sacramento Kings (16-24), 121-119, in their second to last home stance marking them 1-7 in the last 8 games. Washington has now lost 5 in a row and is currently 7-14 at home.
Of course, Washington still finds a way to be Washington and play low to their competition. Their lack-lustered effort against teams with or below a .500 winning percentage has resulted in a record of 4-11 so far this season.
“I’ll say the same thing I said the first half of the year: Nobody’s going to feel sorry for us,” Beal said.
That is completely right because with this back-court duo, there is no way The Washington Wizards should not be ranked 13th in the Eastern Conference and Scott Brooks still has a job. Washington’s inability to take advantage when it mattered most has burned them again.
The Sacramento Kings came into last night’s contest 6-12 on the road and to Washington’s favor, the Kings are 5-14 when opponents grab more rebounds.
So how exactly did Washington lose this game?
The Wizards out-rebounded Sacramento 52-38, scored more points in the paint by 32, and shot better from the field. Here is where Washington went wrong. The Wizards shot 4/25 (16%) from downtown and committed 15 turnovers that resulted in 26 Sacramento points. Sacramento only shot 30% from 3 point range but made 6 more threes than the Wizards resulting in 18 points.
De’Aaron Fox scored 28 points including a go-ahead bucket over Beal with 0.7 seconds left to lead the Kings to victory. The defense from Bradley Beal was there but Fox just an even greater shot from the corner elbow.
“First thought is always to get to the basket, and he tucked on that,” said Fox. “You can’t get to the basket every time. So when I dribbled back, I was ready to shoot the ball.”
Beal says, ”The only thing I probably could’ve done is maybe cut off his left hand, force him right. But he had it going the last 10 possessions.”
De’Aaron Fox scored Sacramento’s last nine points.
Harrison Barnes and Richaun Holmes, who has been playing exceptional by the way, added 18 points each for Sacramento. All five starters scored 15 points or more.
Bradley Beal scored 29 points on 60 percent shooting, 6 rebounds, and 5 assists in 35 minutes. Panda also missed every attempt from 3-point range which contributed to Washington’s horrible 14% shooting clip on the night.
Beal currently has 1159 points in 36 games which since the ABA merger only six other players have scored that many points in less than 40 games played. He joins the list with big names such as Michael Jordan, Allen Iverson, and James Harden.
Russell Westbrook had a solid outing resulting in his 12th triple-double of the season In 39 minutes, Russell scored 26 points, secured 14 rebounds, and dished out 10 assists. Unfortunately, Russ also had 6 turnovers including a terrible turnover with 0.7 seconds left in the game. Fans had to be puzzled because 0.7 seconds is a good amount of time to get a decent shot up and Westbrook threw the ball across the court.
Alex Len finished with 13 points and 12 rebounds. Rui Hachimura contributed 17 points and 9 rebounds in 37 minutes.
Rui and Alex have been improving but Beal is going to need more from his teammates. The “Bench Mob” needs to return and the 3 point attempts need to either be taken out of the game plan or improved in one way or the other.
Bertans, where you at?!
Utah Jazz at Washington
Washington plays their final home game before hitting the road against the Utah Jazz tonight at 7 pm. With the way the Washington Wizards work, this will be a game they have in the bag.
Donovan Mitchell is having a spectacular year averaging 25 points, 4 rebounds, 5 assists, and 1 steal per game. Donovan is accompanied by Rudy Gobert, Michael Conley (1st time All-Star in 2021), Bog-Dog, and Ingles. All of these players have the ability to light it up and make Washington pay in the paint and in opposing second-chance points.
The Wizards are 3-7 in their last ten and Utah is 5-5 in their last 10. Utah ranks first in 3point field goals made per game (17) and ran 3rd in the league in 3 point shooting percentages.
Washington could be in for a long night but this team is so unpredictable, we don’t know what to expect.