DC Council Game 76: Wizards 104 vs Pacers 85: Classic John Wall Game in Front of Classic Bullets | Truth About It.net

DC Council Game 76: Wizards 104 vs Pacers 85: Classic John Wall Game in Front of Classic Bullets

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Updated: April 7, 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. 76, Washington Wizards vs Indiana Pacers; contributors: Kyle Weidie and Rashad Mobley from the Verizon Center.]

The Bill: Washington Wizards DC Council

Classics.

[Elvin Hayes and Wes Unseld speak to the media about the '78 championship and more.]

John Wall on flexing muscle and
playing in front of the
1978 national world champion
Washington Bullets:

Retro Scoreboard:

Washington Wizards 104 vs Indiana Pacers 85
[box score]

MVP: John Wall. He made it look effortless on Saturday night, scoring 37 points on 16-for-25 shooting (64%), to go with five assists, four rebounds, two steals, two blocks (should have been three, but he was called for a foul after blocking Paul George on a fast break).

Stat of the Game: John Wall had 10 points halfway through the first quarter. No other Wizards’ player joined him in the double figures club until Martell Webster hit the first of two free throws with 44 seconds left in the third quarter.

—Rashad Mobley (@Rashad20)

Key Legislature: Washington Wizards DC Council

 Momentum-Changer.

There was 2:04 left in the first half, and Roy Hibbert had just converted on a three-point play to give the Pacers a 48-47 lead. An Indiana lead at halftime would not only nullify the amazing half John Wall had, but it would give the Pacers confidence and an opportunity to wake up in the second half. On the next possession, Emeka Okafor’s shot was blocked (by Hibbert) and the Pacers went right back on offense and gave the ball to Hibbert in the post, trying to stretch their lead to thee or four. Hibbert backed down Jason Collins and prepared to make his move when John Wall ran behind him, stole the ball, and dunked on the other end, despite getting hit on the arm by a hard-charging Paul George. The Wizards went up one (Wall missed the free throw), 49-48, and ended up leading at the half, 51-48. Washington never trailed again.

—Rashad Mobley (@Rashad20)

Council Members: Washington Wizards DC Council

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

John Wall

“Now he is a problem, you have to defend his jump shot and drive.” —Paul George on John Wall

It was another one of those ‘Wow, is this really happening?’ games for John Wall. He was measured from the very first possession of the game, yet turned it on when he had to… and he had to a lot. Remember, this Wizards team, even with Bradley Beal, is far from a polished offensive squad. Right now, they need Wall to grow up a little more and do things on his own. And that he did, but again, within the concept of structure, like a point guard should. Wall scored 15 points in the first quarter on an array of shots—jumpers, runners, tear-drops, and behind-the-back driving stunners.

Wall finished the eve with a semi-championship effort of 37 points on 25 shots. I say “semi-championship” because he could have easily dropped 40 had he not gone 5-for-10 from the free throw line. Wall also contributed four rebounds, five assists, two turnovers, two steals, and two blocks—one block was on Roy Hibbert and there was also a shoulda-been chase-down block on Paul George (a tough whistle was blown). Consider this: Wall absolutely owned one of the best defenses in the NBA, a team in the Pacers which is chasing the second seed in the East, and which was coming off a disappointing home loss against the Oklahoma City Thunder. Keep considering, we’ll wait, because John Wall is the future.

—Kyle Weidie (@Truth_About_It)

3 out of 3 stars

Garrett Temple
Garrett Temple scored eight points on 3-for-4 shooting from the field (hit a couple 3s from the corner) to go with five rebounds and three fouls in 30 minutes. In other words, it was a very Garrett Temple game. He made sure to shut Lance Stephenson down and his plus-8 in plus/minus was fourth-best on the team. Still curious as to if there’s a place on this team for Temple in the future. Randy Wittman sure seems to like him (even as the coach toys around with a Wall-A.J. Price backcourt late in games). But on this roster, who else is Wittman going to like? Cartier Martin? Good ole Cartier was bestowed with the only “DNP-CD” on the night. He almost got in with mere seconds left, but a timely dead ball never occurred, and he was eventually summoned back to the bench—the last 15 seconds wasn’t worth anyone’s effort. But, hey… Garrett Temple.

—Kyle Weidie (@Truth_About_It)

1.5 out of 3 stars

Martell Webster
Martell Webster didn’t exactly bust out of his recent shooting slump, but he wasn’t flat-out terrible, either (3-for-7 FGs, 1-for-2 3Ps, 6-for-7 FTs). But the key is what Webster did otherwise: help defend Paul George. Trevor Ariza and George himself probably had a lot to do with the All-Star going 0-for-8 from the field. Still, give Martell credit, he’s not just an adequate defender, he’s an above-average defender, which is also key to retaining him this summer. Webster had one key poke-away from George as he drove the lane which started an amazing John Wall fast break when he glided past a couple of Pacers, going behind his back with the ball en route to the hoop. Webster also finished with two rebounds, three assists and zero turnovers in his 24 minutes, and he fielded a team-high plus-21.

—Kyle Weidie (@Truth_About_It)

1.5 out of 3 stars

Nene
John Wall was scoring enough for the entire Wizards’ team, so Nene’s lack of offense was not missed. But as Coach Wittman accurately pointed out before the game, the Pacers, specifically David West and Roy Hibbert, play a smash-mouth form of basketball, which meant that the Wizards’ big men needed to be up to that task.  Okafor tried his best and came up short, but Nene rose to the occasion by keeping West from getting comfortable in the post. West still had 10 rebounds, but his 12 points came on 6-of-14 shooting, and he was forced to pass or take bad shots in the post, because Nene leaned on him and simply pushed him out of the paint. Pretty good for a guy who only played 14 minutes.

—Rashad Mobley (@Rashad20)

1.5 out of 3 stars

Emeka Okafor
Not the best of games for Mr. Double-Double. Roy Hibbert had his way with Okafor in the post in the first half by scoring 17 points, several coming on tough-to-stop jumpers. It wasn’t that Okafor was out of position, it was just that Hibbert was too strong and too tall. And when Okafor tried to assert himself a bit more by being physical, he was hit with the quick whistle from the refs. Only Indiana’s decision to stop going to Hibbert in the second half kept Okafor from getting scored on even more.  Offensively (and I do mean that literally) Okafor shot a dreadful 3-for-13 from the field and scored just nine points.

—Rashad Mobley (@Rashad20)

1 out of 3 stars

AJ Price
Before the game, A.J. Price told me that he’s glad that he’s been able to come back at the end of the season after missing nine games with a groin injury. He said he wants to show the team how hard he wants to play and be apart of the organization. Don’t talk to this guy about tanking. He wants to showcase himself as the perfect backup to John Wall.

“It’s definitely a place I would love to come back and be apart of because I see something special happening here—a very similar situation to the one I just came from in Indiana.”

Against the Pacers Price put up four points (2-for-5 FGs), three assists, zero turnovers, five rebounds, and one steal. Decent, backup point guard-type numbers. Price is solid in running the team, but it’s always going to be about his shot. Will his Effective Field Goal percentage of .464, an increase over .414 last season with the Pacers, be enough to keep Price around?

—Kyle Weidie (@Truth_About_It)

1.5 out of 3 stars

Trevor Booker
Young Trevor Booker had five points, three steals and three rebounds, but that is not why he’s making an appearance in DC Council. Booker is here because he allowed himself to be lured into the web of  the master instigator, Tyler Hansbrough—and it only took two minutes. First, Booker was visibly frustrated by Hansbrough’s physicality under the basket as they fought for a rebound, but he just looked to the ref, and then ran down the court. The next time there was a dead ball, Booker intentionally inserted himself into Hansbrough’s path as he went to congratulate a teammate. Hansbrough again chose not to acknowledge Booker’s rising frustration. Finally, with 9:32 left in the second quarter, Booker grabbed a rebound, Hansbrough swiped at the ball a couple times, and Booker threw an elbow with bad intentions and was called for a flagrant foul. Not only did Hansbrough nail both free throws, but on the very next offensive possession, he took a pass from D.J. Augustin and dunked the ball emphatically. That seems harmless enough, but it stalled the Wizards’ first-quarter momentum and allowed the Pacers to get back into the game early in the second quarter.

—Rashad Mobley (@Rashad20)

0.5 out of 3 stars

The Mayor: Washington Wizards DC Council

Randy and Kevin.

Randy Wittman can often be found getting on Kevin Seraphin’s case—plenty of tough love. Not to say Witt doesn’t praise the third year pup, either. He does. It’s just that instances of on-court critique as always especially noticeable, made more so after seeing Seraphin commit a mistake and then get taken out of the game. People often notice this on social media, and I’m not sure if it brings a feeling of disdain and uncomfortableness, or if it is a simply acknowledgement of the coaching process.

For one potential answer, let’s turn to #KevinSeraphinLife on Instagram:

[via instagram/kevin_seraphin]

The caption via Seraphin reads:

“I love this guy cause he want me to be the best I can be !!!”

And now Coach Randy on the pupil:

“He’s had his ups and downs this year. He’s starting to come back around, playing with a little bit more confidence. Again, the thing that he’s got to turn around for himself and we’ve got to work with him on is rebounding.”

The education continues… But at least we’re seeing Seraphin play smarter, more composed offense lately, such as when he passed up a jump shot, drove to the right, and found Garrett Temple in the corner for 3. Seraphin put in 15 points off the bench on 7-for-10 shooting; he added two nice assists, but only four rebounds in 36 minutes—A.J. Price and Garrett Temple each had more.

—Kyle Weidie (@Truth_About_It)

Adjourned: Washington Wizards DC Council

#BringBackWebster?

The Verizon Center has various banners displayed outside of suite entrances on the main floor concourse—some are of Wizards, some are of Capitals, some are of entertainers, such as wrestlers. One of them, we know, is Martell Webster. Surely the cost-effective-minded Ted Leonsis would rather sign Webster to play basketball this summer than pay money to remove yet more imagery of the departed.