The Week in Wizards, the basketball ones — Jan. 20 to 26 | Truth About It.net

The Week in Wizards, the basketball ones — Jan. 20 to 26

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Updated: January 28, 2014

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[via instagram.com/truthaboutit]

Three Wizards weekly wraps in a day? Why, to what do you owe the pleasure?

Oh, by all means, the pleasure is all #SoWizards, and the pixels are for free.

TAI first reviewed the first seven games of 2014, a 2-5 stretch for the Wiz Kids. We then looked at the four games played during the week of Jan. 13, three wins and one loss. Now, we pixelate the most recent week … two wins, two losses (.500 ball), leading to the current 21-22 record and .488 winning percentage.

Adjust the rearview mirror in Ted Leonsis’ Ferrari and buckle-up…

(And for all previous wraps, click here.)

 


Jan. 20 (Game 40): Wizards Beat 76ers in Washington, 107-99, Beal Stays Laced, Wizards Knotted at .500 Again.

 

Memorable Moments:

  • Sixers coach Brett Brown said he was going to use Evan Turner like “Manu Ginobili” before the game;
  • The Wizards built a 21-point lead within the first four minutes of the final quarter;
  • The Wizards’ bench (the Blue Moons) then almost gave that lead away;
  • Bradley Beal almost dropped (messed around and got) a triple-double;
  • Nene’s bones survived;
  • .500! (once again).

TAI’s Sean Fagan (via the D.C. Council):

The clamor of the crowd about the play of Bradley Beal had reached a dull crescendo following the loss to the Pistons, with Beal’s either inability or unwillingness to cut to the hoop cited by several pundits as the great weakness in his game. Beal, moderately chuffed by the criticism, pointed out that he had become a jump-shooter due to the offensive sets that Coach Randy Wittman prefers to run, not due to any timidness of his own. Of course words are words and everyone returned to their keyboards to quietly chortle and prepare the next “Beal can’t drive” pixel grab article. Not that these articles are in any way out of play (because the shot chart don’t lie), but what had started out as a trend pointed out by a few had emerged into a cottage industry #HOTSPORTSTAKE for many.

So it was nice when Beal went to work on MLK Day and unleashed a game that silenced the clattering of keystrokes. How does 20-9-8 strike you? Or that Beal only dialed-up the scoring button to 10 after recoding four assists? How do you like Beal developing a kind of weird hybrid symmetry with Kevin Seraphin and Jan Vesely? #BigPanda understood that with a snowstorm bearing down on the DMV like the wrath of Nene, and with the Bao Bao show being closed on Tuesday (#sadface), that he had to find something a little different in his game.

Play of the Game:

Tweets of the Night (via Game Storify):

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Jan. 22 (Game 41): Wizards Fall to Celtics in Washington, 111-113, in OT WHERE’S WALLACE? Wiz Crash Down to .488.

 

Memorable Moments:

TAI’s Conor Dirks (via the D.C. Council):

With just under four minutes left in regulation and the game tied at 92, Trevor Ariza stole (as he is wont to do with hearts, minds, and balls) a pass from the demigod Phil Pressey, and slung the ball up the court to John Wall, who had his layup attempt summarily blocked by “Conference Finals veteran” Brandon Bass.

“No matter!” said the #YoungKing John Wall, and as the words escaped him, the Wizards in-house shaman, Nene, picked off a Pressey pass and pushed it ahead to Wall. Wall saw Pressey waiting for him near the basket, but did he really see him? Like, does he even know Phil Pressey’s name? It’s like he looks right through Phil Pressey. It’s like he doesn’t even know he exists!

(The sound of Phil Pressey’s locker, filled with pictures of Wall, slamming shut.)

Wall went up for another layup attempt, conveniently keeping the ball on the left side of his body, the side that Pressey was waiting on, instead of shielding the ball as he went up. Barely leaving his feet, Pressey shot his hands out like the tongue of a frog (via green) and grabbed the ball. All ball. All of the ball. Jump ball.

Play of the Game:

Tweets of the Night (via Game Storify):

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Jan. 24 (Game 42): Wizards Beat Suns in Phoenix, 101-95, It’s Pure Blue Magic When Big Panda Produces Smooth Eggs:

 

Memorable Moments:

  • Goran Dragic is very good and the battle between he and John Wall was very fun to watch;
  • Channing Frye went 4-for-6 from deep on Nene in the first quarter but only went 0-for-1 on 3-balls over the rest of the game;
  • Bradley Beal is smooth as eggs;
  • Wall had the same amount of assists as shot attempts (12) and made half his shots;
  • Otto Porter continued to exist;
  • The Brad Beal nickname debate continues… #TeamBigPanda or #TeamBlueMagic?

TAI’s Kyle Weidie (via the D.C. Council):

Previously beset by third-quarter kryptonite, the Wiz Kids flew to warm-weather Phoenix, finished the first half down six points after getting outscored 28-21 in the second quarter (looking like confused daisies in the process), and came out of the locker room swinging for the second half. And guess who was throwing smoke: Hookah Arms Ariza.

Within three minutes of the third period, Trevor Ariza picked up two free throws, a steal, a 3-pointer, and a dunk. Washington took the lead on that dunk and won the quarter 31-19. Ariza played all 12 minutes and tallied 13 points, went 6-for-6 from the charity stripe, and added three steals.

Play of the Game:

Tweets of the Night (via Game Storify):

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Jan. 25 (Game 43): Wizards Fall to Jazz in Utah, 101-104, Out of Tune With Above .500 Music:

 

Memorable Moments:

  • Not much;
  • Shoulder shrugs;
  • Bad shots;
  • Hanging around;
  • Bad shots;
  • Enes Kanter’s big butt.

TAI’s Adam Rubin (via the D.C. Council):

To whom much is given, much is required. Ted Leonsis gave John Wall the maximum amount of money allowed under the collective bargaining agreement this off-season. It would have been nice if he showed up for the Utah Jazz game. Wall looked disinterested from the opening tip. Less than three minutes into the game, Glenn Consor lamented on the radio that he would like to walk down to the court and tell Wall to pick up the pace. It never happened.

Wall has a nagging habit of losing defensive focus against seemingly inferior talent. He did itagainst Paul Pressey and again against Trey Burke. He lost track of Burke on multiple possessions—most notably on Burke’s 3-pointer with 1:23 left in the fourth quarter which extended Utah’s lead to six. Wall left Burke unattended beyond the arc at the left elbow to cheat into the lane to intercept a pick-and-roll pass from Gordon Hayward to Kanter. When Hayward saw Wall overcommit to Kanter, he swung the ball cross-court to a wide-open Burke. It was a bad decision and a lazy play.

Play of the Game:

Tweets of the Night (via Game Storify):

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To be continued… To always be continued…

 


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