DC Council Game 35: Wizards 120 vs Magic 91: Going Streaking! | Wizards Blog Truth About It.net

DC Council Game 35: Wizards 120 vs Magic 91: Going Streaking!

Updated: January 15, 2013

[D.C. Council: setting the scene, rating the starters, assessing the subs, providing the analysis, and catching anything that you may have missed. Unlike the real DC Council, everything here is on the table. Game No. 35, Washington Wizards vs Orlando Magic; contributors: Adam McGinnis and John Converse Townsend from the Phone Booth, with Rashad Mobley taking in the TV feed.]

The Bill: Washington Wizards DC Council



Washington Wizards 120 vs. Atlanta Hawks 91 [box score]

MVP: Emeka Okafor. “Big Mek” led all players with 19 points and his 11 rebounds were second only to Nikola Vucevic’s 13.

Stat of the Game: Fast-break points. The Wizards outscored the Magic in transition, 29-4.

—John Converse Townsend (@JohnCTownsend)

Key Legislature: Washington Wizards DC Council

Stats On Stats.

“We just didn’t accept the challenge on defense today,” groaned Glen Davis in the losing locker room after the game. “They got too many layups. They had 60 [sic] points in the first half. We didn’t come to play today.”

It was actually 59 points, Big Baby… But that’s nitpicking, since his comments were on the money. The Wizards, who never trailed, put up some monster numbers compared to their season averages. For starters, the Wiz scored 120 points—they average 90.2, coming in dead last in the NBA, and something they hadn’t done since their 121-112 win over the Milwaukee Bucks in March 2012. They scored 54 of those 120 points in the paint—they average 33.0 points in the paint, also dead last.

“In the paint, they were able to get some touches, and at the free throw line, they had double-digit free throws,” said Magic HC Jacque Vaughn post-game. “In between free throws and transition points—what we call easy buckets—they had a lot of easy buckets early.”

More stats: The Wizards dished out 32 dimes and shot 56.1% from the field, both season-highs. They also finished 20-for-25 from the free throw line—they average 20.1 attempts from the stripe. And, as I mentioned at the top, they scored 29 fast-break points—they rank 15th in the NBA averaging 13 fast-break points per game.

“We got completely outplayed tonight, in every aspect of the game.” said J.J. Redick, who went on to call the Magic’s transition D “terrible.”

“We just didn’t have it tonight,” he added. “There’s no excuse for it.”

—John Converse Townsend (@JohnCTownsend)

Council Members: Washington Wizards DC Council

Rating five Wizards starters & two key subs on a three-star scale.

AJ Price
The Wizards starting point—for the moment—has been productive since kicking off his mid-season comeback tour this January. While much of the focus has been on John Wall’s strong play, it’s hard to ignore an 18-point, 6-assist (one turnover) performance from Price.

“A.J. Price did a great job running the team, especially in the beginning of the game,” said Magic PG Jameer Nelson. “He pushed the ball, and people don’t always realize that a pass gets the ball up the court faster than a dribble and that’s what he was doing—outletting guys and letting them attack.”

Price was aggressive, but under control, and seemed to bounce back with a big play on the occasion he made an error—whether it was finishing his own misses with putbacks, or stealing the ball from DeQuan Jones, who had rebounded a questionable 27-foot 3-pointer from Price, before hitting a cutting Trevor Ariza for a dunk. And, though single-game plus-minus scores mean little, he was plus-28.

—John Converse Townsend (@JohnCTownsend)

2.5 out of 3 stars

Bradley Beal
Beal has hit game-ending shots, and the confidence he has in his stroke has increased exponentially since the season began. Tonight, after receiving his Rookie of the Month award before the tip, Beal’s new trick was to help remove his team from a complacent state of mind. The Wizards (mainly John Wall) allowed the Magic (mainly Jameer Nelson) to go on a 17-6 run at the end of the second quarter, which allowed the Magic to only trail by seven.

Beal responded by aggressively looking for his shot, and scoring  nine of his 17 points in the third quarter. As impressive as Beal’s scoring and shooting has been this month (he shot 7-for-10 tonight), his ability—as a rookie no less—to take the temperature of this team, and determine when he needs to be aggressive, is even more encouraging. Perhaps he should receive the Eastern Conference Rookie of the Month Award prior to every game.

—Rashad Mobley (@rashad20)

2.5 out of 3 stars

Martell Webster
The most loquacious Wizard had a relatively quiet night in his 19 minutes of play. Offensively, Martell Webster scored just eight points (six in the third quarter), and four of those points came via a 4-point play—his second in three games. Defensively, he helped harass Arron Afflalo, the Magic’s leading scorer, into a 1-for-11 night from the floor.  Luckily for Webster, all of his teammates came to play tonight, so his minor contributions did not hurt the team one bit.

—Rashad Mobley (@rashad20)

1.5 out of 3 stars

Since the beginning of the season, Nene’s playing status has been a main factor in how competitive the Wizards will be on a given evening. His on-court numbers did paint a rosy picture of his positive impact, and Ted Leonsis recently blogged about these stats, which were also covered by a blogger who agreed with the owner’s premise. On this night, however, Nene was a total non-factor (two points, three rebounds in 16 minutes) and barely saw the court in the second half, but the Wizards still clobbered the Magic. He was the only Wizards player who finished with a negative plus/minus rating (-3). Obviously, in order for this team to be successful, Nene has to figure into a larger role but it feels good to give him some extra rest in a blowout.   

—Adam McGinnis (@adammcginnis)

0 out of 3 stars

Emeka Okafor
Emeka Okafor is like a charcoal grill—not nearly as explosive as the gas variety, but when hot, can definitely produce. In Monday night’s beat-down of Orlando, Okafor got cookin’. He was 8-for-13 from the field, highlighted pair of and-1 plays over and around Nikola Vucevic, and added two dimes and one block in 27 minutes. Okafor’s 19 and 11 game was his third straight double-double (his seventh of 2012-13).

—John Converse Townsend (@JohnCTownsend)

2.5 out of 3 stars

Jan Vesely
Kevin Seraphin scored more points off the bench (18) than Jan, and John Wall certainly had more assists (six) and more of an overall moral impact than Jan could ever hope to have. But for the second time in three games (he did nothing in Atlanta on Saturday night), Vesely demonstrated that he is more of asset than a wallflower with his energetic play. He scored eight of his 10 points in the second quarter, and they all came via dunks or layups. He tied his season-high with seven rebounds, and he surpassed his previous season-high assist total (it had been two) with four pretty dimes in the paint. After one assist which led to a Kevin Seraphin dunk, Vesely even played to the crowd by holding up one finger as he ran down the court. His game-high plus-29 even got David Aldridge excited.

—Rashad Mobley (@rashad20)

2 out of 3 stars

John Wall
My eyes were glued to John Wall as he busted out of the locker room, running onto the court for pregame warm-ups. It sounds cliche, but you can even feel the swagger he brings to the layup line—fans screamed his name and teammates smiled as he slapped them high-fives. Wall was joking around with everyone, but not being too silly. Beal and Wall were tossing one another alley-oops. They did not look like the worst team in the NBA in neither body language nor skill level. Something different was bubbling with this new-look team, and I immediately sensed the Wizards would crush the Magic. My prediction became true, due in a large part to Wall showing glimpses of being back to the cusp of his old self.

The “Game Changer” finished with 12 points, six assists, two turnovers, one steal, and one rebound in 20 minutes. He got into the paint successfully, 6-for-6 on free throws, rolled in two nice long-range jumpers and effectively pushed the ball up in transition. Wall played a key role in Washington’s 29-4 fast-break points advantage over Orlando. Most of all, Wall produced some oohs and aahs inside the arena with highlight plays, and fans were having a helluva time celebrating the victory. Thanks for bringing the good times back to Fun Street, Jimmy Wa’. I sure did miss ya.

—Adam McGinnis (@adammcginnis)

2 out of 3 stars

The Mayor: Washington Wizards DC Council

A Little Poetry in Motion. 

For the worst offense in the NBA, scoring droughts have been a common occurrence. And these long stretches of offensive ineptitude seem to be able to strike at any time. Versus the Magic, with flashes of the OT meltdown against Brooklyn, the Wizards saw their 59-40 lead shrink to 59-53 in the final 1:53 of the second quarter. Wittman rallied his troops at halftime: “As I told the guys, ‘You let it slip away.’ Now, we’ve got to win the game again. They came out and they did it.”

Washington responded to the adversity with a season-high 37-point third quarter that pretty much finished off Orlando. Wittman’s rotations were succinct, and the whole staff deserves credit for putting up a season-high 120 points.

“That was as good of basketball as obviously we’ve played all year-round, all around—defensively, offensively,” Wittman said. “As I told them, that was a beautiful thing tonight, to watch that. With ball movement, you could just see everybody feed off of it. The ball is moving, everybody’s touching it, whether you get the shot or not, you’re involved.”

And yes, indeed, three wins in a row is a winning streak.

—Adam McGinnis (@adammcginnis)

Adjourned: Washington Wizards DC Council

Three in a Row … Standing O. 

Hip-hopper Wale, and 14,647 other Wizards fans, gave their team a standing ovation.
Photo via @samkruser 

John Converse Townsend on EmailJohn Converse Townsend on FacebookJohn Converse Townsend on InstagramJohn Converse Townsend on Twitter
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.