Hawks 101 Wizards 99 (ot)
December 13, 2013
Verizon Center, Washington, DC
A crushing buzzer beater by Al Horford capped off a sluggish showing by the Wizards in Atlanta last night. As evidenced by the UG Entertainment party flyer, the Wizards were clearly in post-afterparty mode as they sagged and lagged all night with sloppy play and bad execution.
John Wall, who was exclusively featured as a host on the flyer, was especially out of sorts. He forced bad shots, trailed on defense, and at times just seemed completely oblivious to what was going on around him.
So how was this game even close? Enter one Trevor Booker and a bench in complete beast mode. Booker was just outrageous last night, tallying 24 points to go with 14 rebounds. This guy is such an asset when his game is on. He powered his way to the rim down low, he boxed out and established great position for boards, and was just solid on each end of the court.
The Wizards also got ample production from Martell Webster, who returned from his ankle sprain. It was great to see him not having lost much of a step after the injury. Martell was able to run in transition and keep up with ball handlers on defense. He scored 15 points and grabbed 8 boards in 40 minutes.
The bench was a huge surprise tonight. Scrutinized all season long for their minimal support, the second unit came out in the 2nd quarter on a tear, getting buckets from Glen Rice, Jr., Jan Vesely, and….OTTO PORTER. Porter broke ice on his first NBA basket on a 18-foot baseline jumper, then hit another jumper a few possessions later. The big story coming from the second unit is the exclusion of #MaynorTime. Randy Wittman opted to go with Garrett Temple instead of Maynor, who never stepped on the floor once last night.
MVP: Trevor Booker – 24 points, 14 rebounds, 12-19 FG
This guy is just so good when he’s on top of his game. SO good. Energized, agile, strong, passionate. The traits are just surface scratchers when Cook Book is chefin’. Although he and Gortat had little answers for Horford’s dominant play, Booker made due of his second start of the season with effective and consistent play. One of the strengths of Booker’s game is his ability to not only make a play on one end of the floor, but being mobile and fast enough to race down the court and establish position to make an impact on the other end. Just hope he can develop some consistency.
LVP: John Wall – 13 points, 6-22 FG
Yeah. Read that stat and weep. Weep hard. We understand. John was just terrible last night. He lethargically moved on the floor, took any shot he wanted and bricked 16 out of 22. Atlanta is a fun ass city and when you’re the highlight of a party flyer, it’s pretty much established that your following day after will just be a void in your life. Save for a few plays late in the game, John was a void last night. On the final play in regulation with the game tied, Wall held the ball in the winding seconds to read the defense and run a play. He opted against the Gortat screen and pulled up for a jumper that bricked off the back iron.
Key stat of the game: – Eric Maynor – 0 minutes
Despite vowing for improvement and turning his season around, #MaynorTime was clocked out of last night’s game as coach Wittman opted to go with Temple to sub for Wall. Maynor never saw the floor last night and coincidentally the Wizards bench impressively scored 25 points. On a night where most of the team seemed hungover, the bench looked more controlled as they helped keep the Wizards in it for most of the night.
Tweet of the night:
Trevor Booker >
Trevor Booker has a Ph.D in Mansketball
— David Statman (@DJStatman77) December 14, 2013