D.C. Council 78: Wizards 88 vs Bobcats 94: #SoWizards Magic Turns Bobcats Into Lions | Wizards Blog Truth About It.net

D.C. Council 78: Wizards 88 vs Bobcats 94: #SoWizards Magic Turns Bobcats Into Lions

Updated: April 10, 2014

Truth About It.net’s D.C. Council: setting the scene, recapping key points, providing the analysis, evaluating players, and catching anything that you may have missed from the Washington Wizards. Game No. 78: Wizards vs Bobcats, featuring Kyle Weidie (@Truth_About_It) from the Verizon Center, Chinatown.
Stats probably via the normal places, Basketball-Reference.com and NBA.com/stats.

Washington Wizards 88 vs Charlotte Bobcats 94 (OT)
[box score]


Big Game, Same Atmosphere.




Stat(s) of the Game.


The Wizards attempted 15 3-pointers and made just one, thanks to Martell Webster, who went 1-for-4. John Wall finished 0-for-2, Trevor Ariza finished 0-for-4, and Bradley Beal finished 0-for-5.

The occasion marked just the fourth time in franchise history that the team attempted 15 or more 3-pointers and made just one or less.

Also, the Wizards went 0-for-8 from the field in overtime and scored just one point on a free throw with 34 seconds left when the game was essentially at hand. To the funny pages…

—Kyle Weidie (@Truth_About_It)

[Wizards 3-point shooting vs. Bobcats: 1-for-15]

[Wizards 3-point shooting vs. Bobcats: 1-for-15]


DC Council Key Legislature

The Last Defensive Stand.

(in regulation)

You see the Vine above of the Charlotte Bobcats inbounding the ball, down two, with 9.9 seconds left and scoring via a Kemba Walker-Al Jefferson pick-and-roll against John Wall and Marcin Gortat. You’ll note that the Wizards had a foul to give and did not give it. Here’s what various parties said about the play after the game:

Phil Chenier (via CSN):

“The question is does Gortat come out too high and he gets too far away. At what point do you release that guard back to John and get back to Jefferson. He wasn’t able to close out and get back to Al in time.”


“Because we miss strategy, we missed one foul we’re supposed to make, and that cost us the victory. That cost the game.

“That make part of the process to learn. I hope we can learn all these things because when playoffs, that makes a huge difference.”

John Wall:

“They spaced the court with their shooters, ran pick-and-roll. We had a foul to give. We should have gave it, but we didn’t, and they got the opportunity to slip to the basket and scored the easy layup.”

Randy Wittman:

“They ran a high pick and Jefferson rolled down the paint and they hit him, almost sort of like what we just did at the other end with Marcin getting a layup.”

Marcin Gortat:

“We had a conversation about that. I was just a tough situation for us. We said we could foul, but it’s a tough situation when I’m recovering and the guy’s already going up. And if I jump on his back, there’s a big possibility that he could make an And-1. It’s tough, man. I’ve seen people losing games like that. As a veteran and experienced guy, I didn’t want to do anything stupid. Just try to get a good D, but at the end of the day, he laid it in. We still had three seconds and then we still had five minutes to win the game. Unfortunately, we didn’t.”

John Wall:

“We said 1-thru-4 on the pick-and-roll, you switch. They set it with the 5 man, and fighting over screens, he just made the pass right away, because they had shooters all out. Should’ve had the opportunity to foul right when he came out the pick-and-roll, but he set a good screen and got space.”


—Kyle Weidie (@Truth_About_It)


DC Council Chair

Trevor Booker.

It’s been a while since the Cook Book has scrambled some eggs on the court. His 16 points in the stat book, in fact, is his second-most on the season; he scored a season-high 24 points way back on Dec. 13 of 2013 in Atlanta. Booker’s five blocks against Charlotte was also one off his career-high mark of six (achieved in his rookie season).

Also, it’s been never since Booker went 8-for-8 from the free throw line (all coming in the first half, 6-for-6 in the first quarter). Impressive for a career 61 percent shooter from the charity stripe (.581 this season). Previous instances over Booker’s four-year career where he attempted seven or more free throws in a game go like so: 5-for-9, 3-for-7, 4-for-8, 7-for-8, and 6-for-9.

Several things worked in Booker’s favor to seat him in the council chair. For one, he started the game with energy when his teammates had little, which only helped to magnify Booker’s efforts.

“He was the one guy in the first half that was out flying around,” said Randy Wittman after the game. “We showed it at halftime.”

Two, Nene is back, and Booker quickly realized that food could be scarce.

“Maybe he needs Nene to feel that breath on his back,” said Marcin Gortat about Booker afterward. “And today he played great. He was outstanding for us.”

Three, Booker was guarded by wide-eyed, and “neat” rookie Cody Zeller for a couple of his buckets. Enough said.

Booker is one of the few guys off the bench who can combine muscle with hustle. Unfortunately, oftentimes he’s too small, not confident nor efficient enough on offense, and is not always in the right position on defense (some blame Booker for Josh McRoberts going off early for Charlotte, but some of that was the fault of the rotation when the Wizards double-teamed Al Jefferson). Also, the context of Real Plus-Minus was not too kind to Book.

That said, in certain matchups, Booker is not necessarily going to get lost behind Nene, Drew Gooden, and Al Harrington—Wittman said as much after the game. He just better make sure he starts cooking like he did against Charlotte the next time his number is called.

—Kyle Weidie (@Truth_About_It)


DC Council Vetoed Participation

Surely some may want to veto the participation of both Bradley Beal and John Wall.

Well, you can’t really do that since Wall netted his third career triple-double (14 points, 11 assists, 12 rebounds, but 6-for-18 FGs), and turned up his own dial a notch in the second half, even if his first half defense was poor, offensive selection questionable, and responsibility fleeting.

Beal is your prime candidate. He forced some of his fat midrange deuces early, got bullied and bodied by Gerald Henderson, hit a fairly key shot and made a nice block of Josh McRoberts in the fourth quarter, but went 0-for-4 in overtime with dead legs and hubris.

When the night was over, Wall and Beal could only shrug their shoulders when speaking with the press as if to say, ‘We think we are superstars but we are not super all the time,’ while tipping their hats to Charlotte ‘just making shots’—both Wall and Beal clearly observe games within themselves.

Finally/But/However, we’d be remiss in not mentioning Trevor Ariza. Coming off a bout with the flu, Ariza played over 39 minutes and went 0-for-6 from the field and 0-for-4 from the 3-point line. He added five rebounds, two steals, two assists, two turnovers, and three fouls. Did Randy Wittman play him too much considering the circumstance? Tough call, as Ariza was still a trustworthy presence on defense and no one else is really capable of stepping up. (Martell Webster? Garrett Temple, anyone? Not exactly.) But surely Ariza’s minutes late in the game during such an off night could have been better managed … maybe. But they weren’t. And after the game, Ariza said he was just fine to play while still sounding rather sick. So there’s that.

—Kyle Weidie (@Truth_About_It)



DC Council Top Aide

Marcin Gortat.

OK, so we gave Trevor Booker the council chair for cooking out of the blue when we were totally expecting him to disappear in the bedroom with a box of cereal and a Nene bobblehead…

But, yea, Marcin Gortat totally put up 27 points on 18 shots to go with 14 points and two blocks—against Al Jefferson and a stout Bobcat D. That said, Jefferson did score 20 points to go with 18 rebounds, but those 20 points came on 20 shots. On defense, Gortat moved his feet well and kept good positioning for the most part. His length over Jefferson also had a lot to do with his success on both ends. Gortat did his job, so not many fingers are necessarily pointing at him on this night. Gortat scored nine points in the fourth quarter and in overtime he forced Jefferson into three tough misses.

Now let’s see Gortat be Gortat by calling out the “immaturity” and “fooling around” in practice of unnamed teammates…

—Kyle Weidie (@Truth_About_It)



DC Council Session

That session was …ripe with given-away chances.

The mysterious defense on Jefferson’s game-tying bucket at the end of regulation was bad enough.

But to get the ball with more than three seconds left, sort of miss a pass Bradley Beal who was sort of open for a second on the out of bounds play due to Gerald Henderson slipping, and then watching John Wall dick around with mostly lateral movement and dribbles before firing a jumper falling away from the basket that—wait!—would not have counted anyway because it came after the buzzer.


Lettuce Spray:


And the peanut gallery…?

Phil Chenier (via CSN):

“I don’t know if they realized this, but Bradley Beal’s defender, as he curled around, slipped and was on the floor.”

Bradley Beal:

“It was for John to catch it on the run and be able to get to the basket, but they kind of cut him off and he ended up getting the best shot he could get.”

John Wall:

“It was a play, a zipper, where Brad goes first and I come behind him. And I ripped through to go back to the left side but Marc(in) was still there with his big man so I couldn’t go that way. So I tried to go the other way and there was no where to go. So it was basically like too much crowded.”


—Kyle Weidie (@Truth_About_It)



DC Council Mayor


What came first, the Wittman or the face?

Wittman said he was worried that his players were too fired up before the game (per the video below), and was thus blindsided by how his team came out.

Some criticize Wittman’s offense (maybe team talent should execute better), and some get frustrated with his rotations (he sees more in practice, but is sometimes imperfect in his search), but the biggest indictment of Wittman’s coaching performance this season (which is still about what we expected: his team is two games over .500 with four to go), has been his inability to consistently keep his team motivated.

Before games, during halftime, in the third quarter—coaching is not a science and us bystanders and outsiders work with much smaller microscopes, but inconsistency has been the most consistent thing that defines Washington. Part of such, of course, is certainly understandable with a team led by two young and anointed guards who are perfectly capable of acting like brats.

But look at the Wizards’ roster now, and there’s plenty of veteran experience to find. And at this point of the season, Wiz Kids should be aged-enough cheese that fans should not have to drink their dollar store wine. Coaching ain’t easy, and that’s why there are only 30 at the helm in pro basketball. What’s a Wittman to do?

—Kyle Weidie (@Truth_About_It)



The Other Side.

Bobcats Coach Steve Clifford Pre-Game:


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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.