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Game Notebook 42, Wizards vs. Sixers: Slow to start, fast and furious to finish

Wizards 111
Sixers 76

January 19, 2015 – Verizon Center, Washington, DC

You’re going to start this game off really slow Coach Wittman, but then the 76ers will choke themselves out, ok?

There was a time not too long ago for the Wizards when games against an inferior team that they should have won would instead result in a little bit of diarrhea for us fans. For the first few minutes of the game against a really, really, really young team (youngest in NBA History per our friend Glen Consor) those bowel movements were starting to kick in for Wizards fans in attendance and those watching at home. Allow me to digress for a second…it is not foreign on Wizards fans to be witnesses to great performances on Martin Luther King Day, it does after all feel like Washington always plays at home on this special day. It had just been a while since the fans had something to remember, a la Gilbert Arenas dropping 51 and a game winner over Utah.

But these are different times now for the Washington Wizards. Gone are the days where we need one man to score all the points and provide all the entertainment. Enter Johnathan Hildred Wall, Jr. If you were to look at the box score alone you would see 11 points, 10 assists and a +19. With Wall, though, it is never about the numbers but more so when and how they come. Right as Wizards fans were starting to reach for the Mylanta, the man they call #OptimusDime went on a tear and pulled Washington away from Philadelphia faster than a kiss cam segment gone wrong.

There was the crossover…

There was the yo-yo dribble into a pass…

Wall was even selecting which 76ers defenders he wanted to guard him by dribbling wherever he wanted to go…

All in all, the Wizards did exactly what they had to do in this game. They beat a team they are supposed to beat and in the words of my colleague and friend @Abdu11ah:

Quick takeaways:

Kevin Seraphin: I’ve come to the realization that there is no gray area with Kev-een. It’s black and white. You love him or you hate him and there are no lukewarm fans. What is undeniable, though, is the fact that he’s growing as a player; he’s producing with minutes, and the village approach to growing his game is working. Wizards fans can thank coach Roy Rogers, Paul Pierce, Marcin Gortat, Nene and a slew of others who have helped Seraphin develop because it’s nice to finally see someone other than the obvious high lottery picks panning out for Ernie and Tommy Sheppard. Kevin finished the evening with 14 points on 7 of 9 shooting, a team high (and season high for him) 9 rebounds (6 offensive), and a +19. You can debate us on his improvement, but be ready because the stats and video are our proof.

Everyone contributes: I’ve mentioned John earlier, but this game was about as 2015 Wizards as it gets. No one performance really stood out, but everyone had a hand in the victory.

There was a little #OPJR:

Some feel Good-en moments:

A little DC3 Panda Hop:

And lastly, I’d be remiss if I didn’t include the loudest cheer of the night: free Chick-Fil-A for everyone!

Fave of the Night

John Wall was launching missiles all day long, but none better than this..

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