December 1, 2014 – Verizon Center, Washington, DC
John Wall – 13 assists, 2 turnovers in 32 minutes (sat out 4th quarter): When the Wizards win a game wire-to-wire style, it’s highly probable that John Wall served a hand in a good portion of the damage. Earning himself a courtside seat in the 4th quarter after a season-high 13 assists, Wall dismantled the Miami defense in 32 minutes with a myriad of moves. Cross court passes for corner 3’s, screen and rolls played to perfection and of course, that unfair quickness that naturally becomes a Twitter trend every night the Wizards play.
Heat 2-22 from 3-PT: The Heat brought Brick City to DC and the groundbreaking ceremony was held at the 3-point arc. For much of the night, the Heat actually got good looks at the basket from deep but the rim just seemed unmerciful. The Heat started the game 0-6 from downtown in the first and shot a dreadful 0-12 in the second half.
Moment of the Night
A night of vengeance.
After spending the first week of the season suffering from the fetor of James Ennis’ crotch on his upper lip, Rasual Butler sought vengeance on the Miami Heat as well as absolution from a tarnished soul. And he got it.
With all the blogger brouhaha surrounding the Wizards’ offensive woes, a performance like last night’s at the Verizon Center to counter all the scrutiny was more than needed. I mean, we got a Buffalo Wild Wings-sized tailgate platter of just about everything. I’m talking about the $17.99 joint with the boneless wings and mini corn dogs. Substitute the mozzarella sticks for french fries at no extra cost type of shit. Cross-court passes to Otto for a corner 3. Rasual Butler’s hot stroke. Paul Pierce off-balance midrange jumpers. Textbook Wall-Gortat screen and rolls. More Rasual Butler. A splash of Bradley Beal. A lot of John Wall. Andre Miller craftiness. Rasual Butler. Kevin Seraphin on the boards. Drew Gooden tip-ins. DeJuan Blair garbage time. Rasual Butler.
The Wizards never trailed in this game, led by as many as 25 and by the 4th quarter, they had the entire starting 5 frolicking on the sidelines.
Here’s how it went down..
The Wizards began this game much like many others: looking to establish a tone down low with Marcin Gortat. And for the second straight game, they found great success. Gortat got things started with good position down low against Chris Bosh, receiving the entry pass, and turning around for a clean lefty hook. Moments later, Gortat found himself on the scoring end of a textbook screen and roll with John Wall. He was 2-2 in the 1st quarter.
Hey, Chris Bosh! GTFORTAT!
Ball movement has been a staple in the Wizards’ offense. They rank 4th in the league in total team assists per game and against the heat, 75% of their 39 buckets were assisted (that’s 29 assists.)
Otto Porter once again was an immediate impact in the game. It’s like putting a player on autopilot mode and just expecting him to perform. His hustle is merely unmatched. His awareness defensively is great and continues to get better. Oh, he’s still shooting the ball pretty damn well, too.
Gortat’s defense on Chris Bosh was an area of concern before the game. Bosh’s superb mobility versus Gortat’s subpar mobility was seemingly a recipe for a defensive disaster but actually ended up not so much one. Bosh still got his of course, but on numerous occasions, when attempting to gain a step on Gortat while driving to the rim, Gortat stood his ground well, moving his feet orderly to cut off Bosh’s path.
John Wall’s speed, man. It must be really nice to be able to lose a defender at will, and at any given moment. And once that’s done, it’s must be even more nice having tools to create offense. Otto Porter, for example.
F it. Let’s just make this the John Wall Show.
Rasual Butler has got to be dreaming of multi-year contract extensions and a deferred retirement plan. Once again, an offense that is facilitated by John Wall has become rejuvenatory for an NBA player’s career. Butler is now leading the lead in 3-point shooting at a 55% clip. At this rate and at this age, you could say Butler could be serviceable into his 50s so long as he plays alongside John Wall.
Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh are good. Very good, in fact. Despite their team getting rolled over by the Wizards from beginning to end, the two Heat stars proved why one of them is a perennial Hall of Famer and why the other recently got 95 million dollars richer. Bosh and Wade combined for 18-27 shooting and 42 points. The rest of the squad? 15-45 shooting and 44 points. If only they had a third superstar. Hmmmmm..
The Wizards bench mob tho. The second unit scored half of the team’s total points last night and all 26 in the 4th quarter.