Thoughts on #WizKnicksPosted on February 07, 2013 by Jacob Raim
Jacob Raim - WashingtonWizards.com
The Wizards put forth what might be considered their most complete effort of the year in taking down one of the hottest teams in the NBA, the Knicks. Here are some thoughts on the game:
1. 48 Minutes
Complete performances have not come that often for the
Wizards this year but tonight was certainly one of them. They did not have a letdown quarter, the
Knicks only went on one extended run (the end of the third) and the Knicks
never led the game by more than five.
The offense never fell into much of a stagnant state as John Wall made
sure the ball kept moving all night.
Three point shooters, particularly Webster and Ariza, were getting good
looks because of that ball movement. The
result was 106 points, 53% shooting, 55% 3 point shooting and a game where the
Wizards out played one of the best teams in the NBA.
2. Three Point Shooting
The Knicks are on pace to break the record for most three
pointers made in a season. They make,
and take, more threes than any other team in the NBA. Last night the Wizards took eight fewer
threes than the Knicks, which was to be expected. But what was not expected was the fact that
the Wizards still made two more. No, it
is not every night that two guys will be as hot as Webster and Ariza were from
beyond the arc, as they combined to shoot 10/16 from long range. The fact is they were getting good looks all
night. The Knicks did not do a great job
closing out three point shooters and as mentioned before, the Wizards ball
movement was excellent. New York shot
9/28 from three, good for 32%, below their season average of 38%.
3. Webster and Ariza
Speaking of three point shooting, Webster and Ariza were
incredible last night. Webster continued
his hot shooting ways and Ariza continued to be a scoring option off the bench,
scoring in double figures for the fourth time in five games. Webster shot 5/9 from three and had 19 points;
Ariza shot 5/7 from three and had 20 points.
With Beal out, the scoring slack has to be picked up by somebody and
tonight it was from the two small forwards.
They actually played together for much of the game, particularly down
the stretch, with Webster at the two and Ariza at the three. Ariza also did a solid job on Carmelo Anthony
on the defensive end. Anthony had 31
points but it was on a very high volume of shots and Ariza did not allow
Anthony to beat the Wizards down the stretch.
4. Wall Breaking Down the D
John Wall played an exceptional game last night, scoring 21 points and dishing out nine assists. He was consistently breaking down the Knicks defense with drives to the hoop and forcing them to collapse on him, leaving open jump shooters on the wings to kick to. He was a huge reason Webster and Ariza found so much success from long distance. The Knicks started giving him much more space later in the game and while his jumper was not on, he took advantage of it to find good looks for others. Wall also played 39 minutes and the entire fourth quarter, leading to the conclusion that there are no more limitations.
5. Singleton's Back
Back in the rotation that is. Last night Singleton played 22 minutes
including crucial minutes in the fourth quarter. He had 10 points on 4/5 shooting and was very
effective at the four on defense against the Knicks small ball lineup. With the Knicks not going with a true post
player, Singleton handled the four and defended well, helping on Anthony and
controlling the Knicks pick and roll offense.
6. Chandler's Quest for 20
Tyson Chandler was looking to become the first player in over 10 years to get at least 20 rebounds in four consecutive games and Washington did not allow him to do it, "holding" him to 13. Chandler is an absolute menace on the boards (11.3 per game) and has been unstoppable of late. It was Nene and Okafor who had the responsibility of putting the body on him and they controlled his impact on the glass to a more reasonable level than of late.
Posted in: Sports
Bradley Beal tested out his sore right wrist and took shots at Tuesday's practice as the Wizards get ready for a tough matchup with the division leading Knicks.