DC Council Game 33: Wizards 107 vs Kings 115: Clash of Kings, Game of Groans | Wizards Blog Truth About It.net

DC Council Game 33: Wizards 107 vs Kings 115: Clash of Kings, Game of Groans

Updated: February 23, 2012

[The DC Council — After each Wizards game: setting the scene, rating the starters, assessing the bench, providing the analysis, and catching anything that you may have missed. Unlike the real DC Council, everything here is over the table. Click here for cumulative DC Council 3-star ratings over the course of the season. Game 33 contributors: Adam McGinnis (@adammcginnis) from the Verizon Center, and Rashad Mobley (@Rashad20) and Kyle Weidie (@Truth_About_It) from the television screen.]


Washington Wizards 107 vs. Sacramento Kings 115 [box score]

Stat of The Game

w/ Rashad Mobley

Nick Young shot 6-23 from the field (26-percent), 4-10 from 3-point land (40- percent), and he made his only free throw for a total of 17 points. During this four-game slump, beginning with a loss to the Clippers in Los Angeles, Young has shot 18-66 from the field (27-percent), 7-25 from the 3-point line (28-percent), 5-5 from the charity stripe, and he’s averaged 11.7 points—5.7 below his season average. It still baffles me that someone from the Wizards coaching staff has not implored Young to drive to the basket religiously so that a) he can get that confidence of seeing the ball consistently go through the hoop, which will enable him to get to the line more (where he’s shooting 88-percent for the year); and b) teams will respect his ability to get to the basket to begin with, which will create uncontested shots outside the paint.

Scene of the Game

w/ Kyle Weidie

After the game Randy Wittman said, “They [Wizards guards] need to introduce themselves to some of the bigs that they never throw the ball to.”

Well, coach, that did happen if you cared to watch the game in its entirety. One such instance came after a Washington 20-second timeout with 3:20 left to play. Nick Young and Jordan Crawford had previously hit back-to-back 3-pointers to push the Wizards’ once-squandered lead back up to 84-78. After instruction, Wittman was determined to run a play where his guards fed the post. So, taking the ball out of bounds, Crawford passed to JaVale McGee posting against the stronger DeMarcus Cousins. Let’s take a look at the action in GIF form…

See? JaVale does pass the ball out of the post… unfortunately it went straight to the Kings. But it wasn’t as if John Wall was ready to receive the pass anyway. There Wall sat in the opposite corner, with his hands on his knees, while his goofy teammate bumbled another play.

D.C. Flag 3-Star Ratings

w/ Adam McGinnis, Rashad Mobley
and Kyle Weidie 

<***> Rating the Starting 5, Bench & Coach out of 3 stars.

John Wall

John Wall

ADAM McGINNIS: Post-game, I asked Tyreke Evans about his conversations with John Wall and if they could relate to the other’s early professional career—both successes and struggles. His response: “We just are not used to losing.” It is becoming a common theme in the month of February, Wall balls out and Wizards still lose. Wall almost had a triple-double with a line of 21 points, 11 assists, nine rebounds, three steals, two blocks, and five turnovers. Until the team finds success, critics will put a share of the blame on Wall; but what type of positive outcome is likely when Wall must pass to Rashard Lewis in the corner for three? A real critique would be his porous second half pick-and-roll defense on Isaiah Thomas.
2 Stars (out of 3)
MOBLEY: Except for a few possessions when he dribbled the ball a little too long, and another two or three when he seemed to force shots that weren’t there, Wall played an exceptional game on offense—he missed a triple-double by one rebound. But he allowed Isaiah Thomas to basically win the game in the second half by scoring 16 points with five assists. Tyreke Evans should do that, not a rookie.
1.75 Stars
WEIDIE: John Wall did a great job setting the tone in the first half — 15 points on 6-8 FGs with five assists (one turnover), and four rebounds proves that. And it’s not like Wall didn’t play a minor role in the selfish second half play — an ill-advised attempt with 5:11 left after back-to-back 3-pointers by Mason and Crawford put Washington up 101-100 comes to mind — but my impression is that much of it is out of his control. Wall couldn’t get his triple-double with just five rebounds, six assists (and four turnovers) in the second half. More importantly, he could not be the scorer the Wizards unfortunately need him to be, either — just six points on 2-7 second half FGs.
2 Stars

TOTAL: 5.75 out of 9 stars

Nick Young

Nick Young

KYLE WEIDIE: I think Nick Young more-so fancies himself a Kobe Bryant-type of player, making him utterly oblivious to how much he actually hurts this team. By my observations, Young is no locker room cancer —teammates love his goofy carefree style, and who wouldn’t? The guy does wear fox tails, after all. But on the court, the cancer of Nick’s game is more and more spreading throughout the team’s body. Sure, every once in a while the cancer will go into remission and Young will score like he needs to score, within the principles of a system, sharing the rock and playing a winning brand of ball. But more often than not, we get nights like the one versus Sacramento — 23 shots, 17 misses and 17 points… and the customary single assist. The joys of Young in the second half involved 2-11 FGs. Young is a basketball player, not a basketball winner. And in some far off scenario he could be the latter as well, but this isn’t within a vision of reason and will likely be accomplished when he’s the fourth scoring option on a playoff team. I can really only leave this blurb with the word ‘great’ in quotations… so here goes… “Great.”
1 Stars (out of 3)
McGINNIS: Nick Young’s lights-out performance in Portland is now a distance memory, and there is no reason for him to take 23 shots in this game.
0.5 Stars
MOBLEY: If the injuries to Greg Oden, Brandon Roy and Sam Bowie, and the premature balding of Terry Porter and Jerome Kersey aren’t evidence that Portland is cursed, Nick Young’s slump has to be. After scoring 35 against Portland, Nick is averaging just 11 points a game, and last night’s 6-23 performance was his worst by far.
1 Star

TOTAL: 2.5 out of 9 stars

Chris Singleton

Chris Singleton

RASHAD MOBLEY: During his eight-year career as a member of the Washington Bullets, Charles “Secret Weapon” Jones started 404 of a possible 656 games, and his averages of 2.8 points, 4.9 rebounds and an assist a game were less than dazzling. Where Jones clearly excelled was on the defensive end of the floor, where he would do his best to shut down his man, and even when that wasn’t possible, he’d simply block their shot — in fact he twice finished in the top 10 in blocks as a Bullet. His lack of offense made him a questionable starter, but his defense quickly justified his presence. At the start of the season, Chris Singleton seemed like a more potent Charles Jones. He could get to the rim, hit a 3-pointer or two on offense, and on defense, he had a knack for putting a timely hand in the passing lane. Even last night against the Kings, he had a big block on DeMarcus Cousins and a clever steal on Isaiah Thomas, but he did little else with his 13 minutes of play. Singleton took one shot, got one rebound and was virtually invisible. If he doesn’t pick up his play on at least one end of the floor, it is hard to imagine he’ll continue to get the Secret Weapon-like benefit of the doubt.
0 Stars (out of 3)
McGINNIS: The rookie continues to rack up disappointing performances. Add Francisco Garcia to the list of NBA wings that Chris Singleton cannot stay in front of on drives.
0 Stars
WEIDIE: Chris Singleton can’t guard dribble penetration like the team needs him to; after all, it’s supposed to be his No. 1 duty. I’m not sure if any of his replacements could do much better, but still, it’s time to get the rook out of the starting lineup.
0 Stars

TOTAL: 0 out of 9 stars

Trevor Booker

Trevor Booker

KYLE WEIDIE: I’m not exactly sure what came up ill in the Cook Book’s recipe — he played 17 minutes and had three points on 1-3 FGs with six rebounds (three offensive), two steals, and three turnovers. A big chunk of the sour play was due to foul trouble. He picked up two in the first two minutes of the game, sending him to the bench. He picked up his fourth foul just 15 seconds into the second half … more sitting. So, part of it was him being thrown out of a rhythm with extended and unintended bench spells. Another part of it was Booker not being a positive physical presence against Jason Thompson. But I mostly wonder why Booker was taken out in favor of Rashard Lewis with 4:24 left and the Wizards down 104-101. With a three-guard lineup and Lewis at the 4, Sacramento started dominating Washington close to the rim and took the game.
1 Stars (out of 3)
McGINNIS: Trevor Booker must have spent too much time around Jan Vesely because he got into early foul trouble in both halves. He missed repeated loose balls and was unable to tip in several putbacks. This was not his night.
0.5 Stars
MOBLEY: A couple of Trevor Booker’s fouls were petty calls, but the other two were a result of Booker’s naturally physical style of play. All four fouls took Booker completely out of his game, and he was a relative non-factor, although he still put up better numbers than Chris Singleton.
1 Stars

TOTAL: 2.5 out of 9 stars

JaVale McGee

JaVale McGee

ADAM McGINNIS: It is easy to pile on JaVale McGee for the goaltend spike out of bounds, but similar to his “controversial” backboard dunk versus the Houston Rockets, the play was insignificant to the on-court outcome. The shot was going in the hoop (and he actually made that dunk against Houston). However, it feeds a national media perception that he is a knucklehead (sorry, Pam) and he has to work especially hard to stop these plays or this perception will stick for the rest of his career. McGee went a perfect 4-4 from the field and finished with nine rebounds. Cousins and McGee alos exchanged nice post moves on one another. And though McGee was benched after the spike block, he was highly ineffective upon his return to the game.
1 Star (out of 3)
MOBLEY: Despite being perfect from the field (4-4) and grabbing 10 rebounds, JaVale was routinely beat to the ball by DeMarcus Cousins and Jason Thompson. When Isaiah Thomas made his way into the paint at will in the second half, McGee seemed to be a step slow getting to the ball. And that — not his ridiculous goal tend-out-of-frustration call (which came after a borderline dirty play by Tyreke Evans) — is why his star count is low.
1.25 Stars
WEIDIE: JaVale is one mentally challenged young man with out-of-this-world athleticism… And that’s all I really care to say about that.
1.25 Stars

TOTAL: 3.5 out of 9 stars

The Bench

The Bench

RASHAD MOBLEY: The bench’s assignment against the Kings boiled down to a series of bailouts. Jordan Crawford’s 32 points (on 12-19 shooting) bailed out yet another poor shooting night from Nick Young. Rashard Lewis, in what is becoming routine for him, had an inconsistent night by scoring just seven points in 30 minutes of play, but even that was enough to bailout the foul-plagued Trevor Booker. And in the first quarter, Roger Mason’s five points bailed out Chris Singleton, who has clearly lost his mojo. Kevin Seraphin was feisty at times and Shelvin Mack was intermittently aggressive, but last night’s bench performance was all about Crawford — unfortunately, this may cause his shot output to increase exponentially.
2 Star (out of 3)
Sub Man of the Game: Jordan Crawford
McGINNIS: The big question surrounding Jimmer Fredette’s entry into the NBA was whether he could defend. Leave it to Jordan Crawford to expose a true weakness — J. Craw took it to “Jimmer Time” in the first half. I want a test of Sweet Lew’s vertical jump because he is so tentative around the rim; he would rather throw long passes back outside the 3-point line than attack the basket when he has the ball in the lane. Seraphin made a jumper and rebounded decently in first half, but could not protect the rim effectively in the deciding final quarter. Roger Mason Jr. surprisingly scored on a nice drive to the hoop, so that means… DRINK!
1.5 Stars
Sub Man of the Game: Jordan Crawford
WEIDIE: Not many complaints about the bench. Crawford had an insane shooting night that warranted some of his crazed attempts. Kevin Seraphin had a decent bounce-back game (sort of) with six points and six rebounds in 22 minutes. Although, with just over eight minutes left, Seraphin leaked out on offense, leaving Trevor Booker and Wittman’s three-guard lineup to fight one of the best offensive rebounding teams in the league — so this is a huge blemish on Kevin’s night (in addition to his two missed FTs). Lewis tried, Mason hit a couple 3s without being completely horrible on defense, Mack was solid in limited run, and Vesely played 1:20 after suffering from a stomach virus.
2 Stars
Sub Man of the Game: Jordan Crawford

BENCH TOTAL: 5.5 out of 9 stars

The Coach: Randy Wittman

The Coach: Randy Wittman

KYLE WEIDIE: Wittman’s most selfish players are also his best scoring options. What the eff is an interim coach of a very young, unintelligent team with less than capable veterans supposed so do? This damn blogger with a day job has no clue. I do question Wittman’s decision to insert Rashard Lewis for Booker with 4:24 left and the Wizards down three, introducing a lineup of John Wall, Jordan Crawford, Nick Young, Lewis, and Kevin Seraphin to the game which proceeded to get son’d by Kings, especially Chuck Hayes. I guess with the pandemic of me-first B.S. Wittman hoped Lewis would be a calming presence on offense. Is that what it’s come to? Relying on Lewis and Seraphin — inserted, I assume, because of the same ol’ dumb things from JaVale McGee — to win the game? Sheesh.
1 Star (out of 3)
McGINNIS: The saying is “live by the three, die by three,” but against the Kings, it was “roll with the three-guard line up, get rolled by the three-guard line up.” Wittman wanted to make a point in benching JaVale McGee’s after several poor defensive rotations, but there’s no way Seraphin should have closed out the game.
1 Star
MOBLEY: After halftime of Monday’s game against Phoenix, Alvin Gentry switched to a zone, and the Suns went on a 31-6 run to put the game away. After a listless first half, Coach Keith Smart told the Kings to pick up the defensive intensity, and they did just that, outscoring the Wizards 55-39 in the second half. Wittman is well within his right to scold his team’s second-half effort, but who is scolding him for his inability to successfully motivate in the last 24 minutes of the game?
1.25 Stars

COACH TOTAL: 3.25 out of 9 stars

Seen on the Scene

w/ Adam McGinnis

Two hour before tip-off, there were about 300 Jimmer fans in the arena cheering while Fredette warmed up. They carried signs, banners and most were decked in either BYU apparel, Fredette Kings jerseys or Jimmer Time T-shirts. They sang him “Happy Birthday,” although his birthday is not until Saturday. I asked the Kings rookie about his legion of enthusiasts, and he appreciated the support, but seemed embarrassed by all of the attention.

Despite being overshadowed by the boisterous BYU fans, there were many Kentucky Wildcats fans in attendance to cheer for former players John Wall, DeMarcus Cousins and Chuck Hayes.

Isaiah Thomas and Wall were assessed double technicals for jawing with one another. Wall told Thomas, who was at end of the Kings bench, to come in and guard him. Thomas said that he is good friends with Wall and the ref mistakenly took the exchange for malice.

After his post-game interview, Thomas put on a Washington Nationals baseball hat, and I asked him about the lid: “It has ‘W’ for the state of Washington… I have many hats with the ‘W’ because Washington state is where I am from.” Sorry, Nats fans.

An amusing moment occurred when Cousins was waiting outside the Wizards locker room for Wall. When he opened a Styrofoam container packed with his post-game meal, Cousins demonstratively reacted to what he found: “I ordered a crab cake sandwich and this is what they give me?” Inside was one lone crab cake patty. No bread, no fries, nor anything else.

After the game, Booker drove south eight hours to his home in South Carolina for the All-Star break. He will be a coach for the Clemson Tigers Alumni game on Friday and will be honored at halftime of Saturday’s game versus North Carolina State as one of the top 25 Clemson basketball players of all time. His brother, Devin, is a starting power forward on the current Tigers team.

Booker, who loves TV shows, is finally caught up on his DVR of Teen Mom and Basketball Wives episodes. He saw the movie “The Vow” while on his day off in Utah, but was not a fan of the flick.

Sometimes the game just … slips away.

Top Tweets

@netw3rk: Javale McGee has done, maybe, the 3 dumbest things ever done on a basketball court & he’s done it all this season.

@malitzd: “I was there for the JaVale goaltend game.” (“Which one?”) #ShitWizardsFansSay

@ConorDDirks: @Truth_About_It Wizards catch Jan Vesely’s stomach flu at halftime, vomit terrible shots for rest of the night.

@Mike_Nasty11: We lost to a man that’s named after a man that’s not his father. That’s awesome.

End Scene


“There wasn’t anything in that second half that was done to win the game.” —Randy Wittman


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John Converse Townsend
Reporter / Writer / Co-Editor at TAI
John has been part of the editorial team at TAI since 2010. He likes: pocket passes, chase-down blocks, 3-pointers. He dislikes: typos, turnovers, midrange jump shots.