November 22, 2014 – Verizon Center, Washington, DC
Wizards outrebound Bucks 53-36; outscore in paint 48-38: Despite losing Nene for the game (plantar fiscitis) after just 6 minutes of play, the Wizards were not deterred from doing what they’ve been doing all season long: dominating the interior. The Wizards dictated the glass and got buckets at the rim.
The convenience of Rasual Butler Having a butler around can really help get things done around the hous..err..basketball court. In all the games this season in which Rasual Butler has clocked more than a minute of burn (he played just 1 minute vs. Cleveland on Friday), he has hit at least one 3-pointer. He’s also hit one in 6 of the last 7 games for the Wizards.
Moment of the Night
Lob City DC!
You know, we should act like this is nothing. We should act like we’ve been here before. It’s the #HouseOfGuards. They s’posed to do shit like this. NAHHH. Bradley Beal calls he and John Wall the best backcourt in the league and while many won’t agree..yet, it’s plays like this that prove that they are truly shaping into what Brad says they are.
Without even getting a chance to soak in their dominating win over the Cavs the night prior, the Wizards were scheduled to skate off to Milwaukee to face the Bucks on the second night of a back-to-back.
Usually a night like such would result in a game lost due to some complacence and players being flustered from the overwhelming hype with the Cleveland game and actually living up to it. For the first 16 minutes or so against the Bucks, that’s exactly what it seemed like. The first six minutes of the 2nd quarter especially were a channel switcher. And watching Andrew Zimmern on Bizarre Foods in Mongolia chow down on stew made from mushed pig brain would have been a better viewing option.
But as Randy Wittman continued to ride with his second unit that , the Bucks continued to chip away, eventually getting turnt up to a 15 point lead. This – somewhat surprisingly – would lead to no dejection on the Wizards’ part as John Wall and Paul Pierce took command of the game and swung it around by 31-points (!!!) in the Wizards’ favor.
And to know those poor Milwaukeeans at the Bradley Center felt they were in for a kick-back night sipping on the finest local brew and watching their team whoop on an Eastern Conference foe only to end up moping towards the stadium exits well before the game’s final buzzer, well, it doesn’t make me feel anything and this is a run on sentence.
Paul Pierce, this paragraph is dedicated to you because you were GINORMOUS tonight. Pierce is a godsend to this offense and last night he was all but merciful to the Bucks. Bestowing his prowess to the tune of 25 points and 10 rebounds to go with four 3-point shots, Pierce was the catalyst in turning this game around for the Wizards, and he was practically the closer with 7 points in the 4th.
As mentioned in the ‘Key stats’ above, the Wizards established a heavy presence down low and per usual, in they initiated that presence early in Milwaukee by opening up with a lay-in attempt by Nene who missed but got a follow-up by Gortat. A few plays later, Gortat again would commandeer the paint, ripping down an offensive board and putting the ball back in the basket.
Haven’t seen a John Wall chase-down block in a while. So here’s one on Brandon Knight.
The Wizards did play a bit sloppy in that 1st quarter, turning the ball over 7 times which led to 8 Bucks points and a lot of Giannis Anthadiogahggjkfgdfgdasiofdjasd (I’m just going to refer to him as Giannis in this post). For his size and length, Giannis runs the floor terribly well and is definitely sneaking into becoming one finest young stars in this league.
The Wizards switched on defense quite a bit in the first half. Some of these switches matched Wall up against Giannis and the size discrepancy gave Wall a disadvantage, allowing Giannis to effectively back down Wall in the post for an easy bucket.
Can’t say enough about Kris Humphries, though. He’s extremely dependable with his midrange shot and a dominance on the glass which leads to putbacks and second-chance points. Humphries also chimed in with 8 fourth quarter points to help close out the game for the Wizards.
The Bucks began to chip away a bit late in the 1st quarter and into the 2nd as the Wizards went on a rampage of bad possessions. A Larry Sanders block on Pierce led to a Khris Middleton 3. Andre Miller telegraphed a pass and had it stolen, leading to another Bucks break led by Giannis. Miller then fouled Jarryd Bayliss on a 3-point attempt. This all opened up a double-digit lead for the Bucks and the Wizards seemed to be unraveling.
Even when Wall returned, the funk continued. He missed a layup, then forced a bad pass to Gortat leading to more Bucks points in transition. The Bucks, by the way, outscored the Wizards in that department 23-16 for the night.
Things would start to sway soon, starting with Rasual Butler.
The Butler, serving up hot biscuits fresh out the oven with this pretty move.
Things really began to swing the Wizards’ way in the 3rd quarter, where John Wall and Paul Pierce combined for 14 of their 27 points. The Wizards forced 4 turnovers in the 3rd period helping Wall do his thing in transition. Including this again:
Paul Pierce was excellent in that 3rd quarter. He knocked down a 3, then followed it up by getting to the line on the next possession. Hit a 3 again and all of a sudden the Wizards are up by 9?!
By the way, Nene was confirmed to be out for the rest of the game at the beginning of the 2nd half when Drew Gooden was spotted on the floor in his place. Nene is again suffering from his recurring plantar fasciitis.
The Wizards closed out this game in a most proper fashion. Scoring 37 points in the final quarter, the Wiz got buckets via a combination of just about everything, but the key performers were none other than John Wall and Paul Pierce. Pierce knocked down two late game buckets, both assisted by Wall, before Wall stole an inbounds pass and took it in for a game-sealing jam.
The Wizards also got sporadic contributions from Kevin Seraphin, Rasual Butler and Kris Humphries as well. Butler hit a 3 to begin and end the 4th quarter, while Humphries and Seraphin hustled on each possession to keep the Wizards ahead.