1. John Wall, Dime City Mayor
An elite point guard sees the floor extremely well. He finds cutters, gets the offense into its sets quickly, directs traffic, and more. When an offense runs fluidly, every beneficiary of the point guard’s work looks good. I mean, look at what Steve Nash did for those Phoenix team. Hell, I averaged 12.9 PPG in that offense. True story!
Here, Wall directs a flawless pick and roll (which Washington runs more than a lot of East teams) and finds Nene for a layup finish over Jonas Valanciunas, who (true story!) fouled a Wizards player on every play. Washington hasn’t relied much on Nene for offense so far this series, but if it’s needed, Wall will find him.
2. Otto gonna Otto
Wizards fans have been waiting for this, right? Invigorated by Paul Pierce abandoned the mild-mannered role for a more aggressive one in Game 2. He slashed, popped, and got key put-backs on his way to 15 points (6-8 shooting) and 9 rebounds.
Here, Otto takes Demar Derozan off the dribble and knifes through the lane to make an acrobatic layup over (a fouling) Jonas Valanciunas. “Regular Otto” would have handed the ball to the closest Raptors player and gotten an early start on some local community service. This version, though, has what he’s needed since he got to Washington: minutes and confidence.
3. John Wall #takeover
John Wall is suprahuman. He’s faster than a Honda Accord being driven by a 16-year old male with a new license. He has pistons in his thighs that give him ease of vertical lift like a new drone. He has the wingspan of one of those fictional birds that, like, fly really high and does . . . um, bird stuff . . . like dunking eggs. He’s an amazing specimen.
In what will likely be the signature sequence of the series, Wall hangs in the air for a full quarter, blocks Demar Derozan’s shot and steals his soul. On the other end of the floor, he drives the lane on the fast break and finishes through contact over someone other than Jonas Valanciunas (Amir Johnson). You can’t do that without speed, robot legs, and feathers. Don’t even bother trying.
4. Is Toronto about that #KSLife?
What does #kslife mean to you? Losing your pet snake somewhere in the city? Putting a seatbelt around your favorite stuffed toy? How about just being a delightful French oddball?
What it should be is always being ready. Kevin has solid season and his hard work is paying off in the form of worthwhile playoff minutes. Here, he shows some pick and roll synergy with John Wall, sliding off around the elbow and hitting a contested jumper over Jonas Valanciunas. YES, Seraphin picked up four fouls in 10 minutes of play, but that’s just being efficient and hard-nosed.