Wizards vs. Wolves in 13 Frames: A 101-89 Embarrassment | Wizards Blog Truth About It.net

Wizards vs. Wolves in 13 Frames: A 101-89 Embarrassment

Updated: December 27, 2009

The Minnesota Timberwolves might have blamed their poor shooting Saturday night on a cold gym (they finished 37.4% from the field and spent much of the game in the 30s), much like Gilbert Arenas did after a loss to Detroit earlier in December.

Instead, the young T-Wolves fired up energy and hustle to overcome their 57 missed shots (out of 91) to beat the Wizards 101-89, mostly due to crushing the heartless Wiz 19-7 on the offensive boards. At 39.5%, the Wizards didn’t shoot much better from the floor. But opposed to the inexperience of Minnesota, the bad shooting of Flip Saunders’ team was the result of an escape from the offense.

So, it’s another significant step back after a tiny-step forward. A lot of talent, but little teamwork. And once again with more turnovers (16) than assists (12), a lot of offensive selfishness and little to show for it.

Quote from Phil Chenier:

(after Sessions and Love out-fought Butler and Blatche for an offensive rebound)

“This has been the whole story tonight. Just the fact that they’ve been a little bit hungrier, a little quicker, and sometimes just have better bounce [of the ball].”


[Michael Lee – Wizards Insider, Washington Post]

They had Saunders looking ill most of the night, as he angrily paced up and down the court. He slouched his shoulders after each bad jumper early in the shot clock. He turned and rolled his eyes as the Timberwolves consistently beat them to offensive rebounds. And he repeatedly shouted at players whenever they missed a defensive assignment.

He didn’t have a hard time explaining how the Wizards shot just 39.5 percent: “Guys have to be disciplined. They have to be willing to turn down a shot at time. Tonight, we had no shot discipline. Tonight, it was, ‘I haven’t taken a shot, so I’m going to shoot it.’ when you do that, you shoot 38 percent from the field.”

[Ben Goessling – Washington Times]

The frustration was palpable afterward; Saunders, who hadn’t lost here in any of his return trips with the Detroit Pistons, walked past reporters without stopping to answer questions before returning later for a brief interview, and several players said the Wizards’ effort was unacceptable.

[Craig Stouffer – Washington Examiner]

Washington played down a level from the moment their 18-11 lead in the first half was erased in the blink of an eye. Of course Randy Foye should’ve played a bigger role — he was desperate to win, and win big. Perhaps focusing on him before the game was slipping away in the final moments would’ve helped him defensively, where he was a team-worst -17. As for Flip Saunders, he’s probably regretting inviting the players to his house last night. It’s no longer a Christmas to remember.

[William Yoder – Agent Dagger]

The Wizards had more turnovers than assists, 16-12, in an ugly game that the Wizards arguably just gave away. Arenas was the biggest offender as his nine assists were almost erased by his seven turnovers on the night. While the Wizards entered the fourth trailing only one, it was turnovers that kept them from taking control of the game, the way a veteran team should over a squad like the Timberwolves.

[Jerry Zgoda – On The Wolves, StarTribune.com]

Sessions was darn good in the fourth quarter. He subbed in for Jonny Flynn late in the third quarter and stayed in the game until only 1:03 remained. He was out there for almost all of a decisive fourth quarter when the Wolves outscored the Wizards 33-22.

On a night when Flynn went 2 for 12, Sessions produced a 10-point, 8-rebound, 5-assist, 1-block night that included four of the team’s 19 offensive rebounds.

{bonus picture: this is not your mom’s Kurt Rambis}

Steve Buckhantz on the transition of Rambis’ appearance:

“But he turned into a pretty good looking guy, I think.”

Phil Chenier:

“Uh, if you’re into that, you know …”

{dunk of the night: Ryan Hollins on Andray Blatche}

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Kyle Weidie
Founder / Editor / Reporter / Writer at TAI
Kyle founded TAI in 2007 and has been weaving in and out the world of Wizards ever since, ducking WittmanFaces, jumping over G-Wiz, and avoiding stints on the DNP-Conditioning list. He has covered the Washington pro basketball team as a member of the media since 2009. Kyle currently lives in Brooklyn, NY with his wife, loves basketball, and has no pets.