Wizards Report December 8Posted on January 14, 2013 by DJ-WizardsRadio
By Dave Johnson
It’s hard not to get a sense of deja-vu with the Washington Wizards. Down by 18 points in the third quarter, the Wizards were able to make fans in Atlanta squirm when it was a two point game in the fourth quarter before succumbing to a 104-95 loss to the Hawks.
It was a familiar script for the Wizards in a season that has produced only two wins against 14 losses. For the sixth time this season, and the second time against the Hawks, the Wizards fell behind by double-digits in the first quarter.
Here is today’s Wizards Report:
To be sure it was the loss was a disappointment for the Wizards who openly talked of the importance of building on their win over the Miami Heat. Still, the Wizards can ill afford to dwell on the loss with a home game against Golden State tonight at Verizon Center.
For the Wizards it was their tenth straight loss to the Hawks in Atlanta dating back to January of 2008. Players on both teams have changed during that time period, but a corps group of Hawks including Josh Smith, Al Horford, and Zaza Pachulia have helped the Hawks control the boards and as a result the games.
Smith had 15 rebounds to go with his game-high 23 rebounds. Horford grabbed 14 rebounds and added 14 points, while Pachulia had nine boards including five on the offensive glass. In total the Hawks had a 47-32 rebounding advantage on the Wizards including 15 offensive rebounds which provided a 22-10 edge in second-chance points.
The Hawks outscored the Wizards 48-32 in the paint and 16-10 in fast break points. All five Hawks starters scored at least 14 points for the first time this season and the group recorded a season-high 86 points. With 23 assists, Atlanta dished-out at least 20 assists for the 15th time in 16 games.
Wizards head coach Randy Wittman:
“We stopped trusting each other again. We got down early, and again it was because of too much dribbling and trusting where we’re going. Plus (the Hawks) guards just totally dominated us tonight. (The Hawks) also dominated us on the boards. Had we done a better job in the second and third quarter it might have been a different outcome. I was actually more concerned with what we were doing at the other end tonight in terms of our defense. I think our defense is what cost us the game tonight. It was one of our poorer performances on defense this season.”
Defensive drop off:
The Wizards have been able to point to defense as a strong point this season, but that was not the case on Friday against the Hawks. The Wizards especially struggled with defending dribble penetration as Hawks’ guards Jeff Teague and Devin Harris routinely weaved their way into the paint.
Nene was able to play a season-high 24 minutes and finished with 12 points and 6 rebounds. Jordan Crawford had 14 points and 5 assists. That’s eleven assist over the last two games for Crawford. Kevin Seraphin led the Wizards with 19 points. Bradley Beal recovered offensively from a hesitant first half to score 14 of his 18 points in the third quarter.
Golden State Warriors:
The Warriors have opened their seven-game east coast road trip with a 2-0 record. After winning in Detroit on Wednesday, the Warriors defeated Brooklyn on Friday 109-102 to improve to 12-7 on the season. David Lee had 30 points and 15 rebounds.
The Warriors are a team on the rise. After a 23-win season last year, the Warriors are building around Lee, Harrison Barnes, Stephen Curry, and Klay Thompson. In Brooklyn Curry exploded for 28 points. Off the bench the Warriors get energy from Carl Landry
The Washington Wizards are nothing if not resilient. On a night when they lost starting point guard A.J. Price to injury in the first quarter, the Wizards found a way to recover from an early deficit before falling 101-97 to the Golden State Warriors. The Wizards bid for a third consecutive home win was tripped up by missed free throws and rebounds. At the free throw line the Wizards were only 14 of 23. On the boards the Warriors had a 57-37 advantage in rebounds. The warriors finished with a 15-4 advantage in second-chance points. Here is today’s Wizards Report: