Key Legislature: Wizards 86 at Kings 109 — Randy Wittman's Math Doesn't Add Up | Wizards Blog Truth About It.net

Key Legislature: Wizards 86 at Kings 109 — Randy Wittman’s Math Doesn’t Add Up

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Updated: March 23, 2015

Truth About It.net’s Key Legislature: a quick run-down and the game’s defining moment(s)
for Washington Wizards contest No. 70 versus the Kings in Sacramento.
via Kyle Weidie (@Truth_About_It) from the District.

DC Council Key Legislature

by Kyle Weidie.

Sunday’s loss to the Kings can be broken (or boiled) down into simple analytics. Or rather, math. Or just regular old addition. Let’s break down the equation by quarter:

1st Quarter

  • Sacramento starting a small lineup, featuring Rudy Gay and Omri Casspi at the 3/4; PLUS…
  • Washington not really having a good defensive game plan to compensate, along with bad switching leading to two Casspi first-quarter 3-pointers; PLUS…
  • Casspi also driving he ball down Nene’s throat, scoring eight points in the first quarter; PLUS…
  • DeMarcus Cousins hitting a couple jump shots and doing beastly work as per usual (10 first quarter points); PLUS…
  • The Wizards only really taking advantage of the size advantage once or twice; PLUS…
    Sacramento packing the paint on defense and the Wizards going 2-for-7 on 3s (mostly open attempts) because that’s a roster inefficiency; PLUS…
  • Nene’s inability to finish around the rim or be a better threat to pass out of the post (rather he’s only really a threat to pass it to cutters when standing still in the midrange); PLUS…
  • Kevin Seraphin and Drew Gooden being less than ideal on defense, leading Comcast’s Steve Buckhantz to point out how Washington’s starting big men have been getting into foul trouble early and that it “changes everything,” which is also to say that Washington’s bigs off the bench have sucked, somewhat; PLUS…
  • Gooden doing decent work to hit a long 2 and get a rebound put-back but later landing a slap-bound right in Andre Miller’s hands, who scored for Sacramento; EQUALS…
  • A 34-29 advantage for the Kings after one period.

2nd Quarter

  • Bradley Beal creating a corner 3 for Ramon Sessions and later Sessions hitting a runner seemed nice; PLUS…
  • Not only does Rasual Butler continue to be relatively cold, but he takes a lot of bad/forced shots; PLUS…
  • Seraphin was settling for halfcourt midrange jumpers off one pass; PLUS…
  • Derrick Williams continued to dunk all over fools and Boogie Cousins started getting hotter; PLUS…
  • Two (2!) Gooden long 2 misses off one pass and with plenty of time left on a shot clock. ‘Not passing up open shots’ is one of the bigger fallacies on Randy Wittman’s plate; you see the good teams pass up open shots for a better shot all the time, the Wizard often don’t; PLUS…
  • Paul Pierce checking in and hitting a long 2, but it’s not a bad long 2, as he very quickly scoped the floor for other options first. If anyone on the Wizards seems to know the value of a 3-pointer, it’s Pierce; PLUS…
  • John Wall getting caught gambling on Ray McCallum a couple times, so that definitely screwed up Wittman’s precious, offense-creating defense; PLUS…
  • Pierce getting mad because a foul wasn’t called in his favor on one end so he committed a flagrant and pushed Casspi on the break on the other end, causing Casspi to plow into a little girl sitting baseline. The little girl seemed to be OK, but not the best look from Pierce. But also, little kids shouldn’t be sitting so close to the action; PLUS…
  • Wall attempting risky passes, continuing to highlight how he still needs to mature as a game manager. This seemed to lead to over-passing or bad passing from the Wizards overall; PLUS…
  • Rudy Gay starting to get his, drawing a third foul on Pierce and soon after tossing Otto Porter aside like stick figure. Gay scored eight points in the second quarter and led the Kings with 15 at half; EQUALS…
  • Sacramento winning the second quarter 23-21 and leading at halftime, 57-50.

3rd Quarter

  • Nene having trouble with Cousins early in the third and then versus Rudy Gay on the switch; PLUS…
  • The Wizards offense having to move the ball ‘perfectly’ to even have a chance at scoring; PLUS…
  • More turnovers from Nene or him not getting a foul call (probably because he complains to the refs a lot); PLUS…
  • Beal looking for a foul call when Ben McLeMore beat him down the floor for points, putting the Kings up 13;  PLUS…
  • Boogie beating the Wizards down the floor for points, putting the Kings up 17 with 7:40 left in the third; PLUS…
  • Sacramento increasingly getting deflections and loose balls; Nene not hitting free throws; Wall not hitting shots and looking visibly frustrated; PLUS…
  • Boogie crossing up Nene off the dribble; PLUS…
  • Wall driving and passing but Gortat and Sessions were clogged together on the court so the ball just rolls to the 3-point line with no one there; PLUS…
  • Wizards not getting back on D, Kings hitting 3s, bricks falling, Sessions getting back-cut by McCallum, general ugliness; PLUS…
  • Gortat tried working on the boards and Wall tried to find him off screening action a couple times but it didn’t really matter; EQUALS…
  • Sacramento winning the third quarter 33-20, shooting 2-for-6 from 3 (Wizards 0-4) and 9-for-10 from the free throw line (Wizards 2-6).

4th Quarter

  • Martell Webster in the game and missing bad shots as per usual; PLUS…
  • Turnovers collecting like rain water in a bucket; PLUS…
  • The Wizards trying to set up Drew Gooden for 3 as the trailer (he missed); PLUS…
  • Toure’ Murry getting to play (and missing from midrange); PLUS…
  • Webster not being able to finish an alley-oop from Sessions; PLUS…
  • The offense becoming everyone watching Kevin Seraphin, or whomever has the ball, post up; PLUS…
  • Rudy Gay turning Seraphin into Shaqtin-a-Fool candidate; PLUS…
  • Wittman really waving the white flag by taking Wall out with 9:10 left and the Wizards down 21; PLUS…
  • Otto Porter and DeJuan Blair checking in as anti-victory cigars; EQUALS…

A 16-point fourth quarter, AND…

  • Washington’s offense looking no better than it probably looked on the first day of training camp; AND…
  • Wittman insisting that the problems aren’t with the offense, or rather just conveniently ignoring his unquestionably poor system layered atop an insufficient roster; AND…
  • The Wizards suffering an embarrassing 23-point loss in a game that they were never really in; AND…
  • Sacramento’s average lead was 10.6 points, AND…
  • After climbing within one point with 8:12 left in the second quarter, the Wizards never got closer, getting outscored 70-48 over the rest of the contest on 37.5 percent shooting and 0-for-9 from 3-point land to go with 10 assists to 12 turnovers.

BUT where’s the game-defining moment? The legislature that was key?

“Legislature” is defined, by a place called Wikipedia, as “as state’s internal decision-making organization.” Or, as a piece of legislature (or law), the institutional framework that defines a system.

The Wizards are getting to the point where relatively vague measurables like “effort” vary wildly from game to game and the only constant is the set of rules which govern Washington’s offense, currently ranked 15th in the NBA, which is severely limiting for a team with any sort of aspirations. The governor of Washington’s offense, Randy Wittman, insists that the problem is his fifth-ranked defense. And while there is always something to creating easy offensive chances with good defense, such a take is obscenely ignorant to the problems at hand.

What say you, governor? 

Not that it’s a rarity to see a coach so stubborn, so intentionally (or unintentionally) oblivious to what ails his team. Whether it’s lack of 3-point shooting, or lack of driving, or lack of free throws, or lack of movement and spacing, for every one finger pointing at “defense” or “effort” there are three fingers pointing right back at the coach.

Will the coach eventually right the ship for the playoffs? (The plan right now seems to be: don’t change anything this late in the game; survive the regular season ass-backwards; and hope for an uptick in ‘effort metrics’ for the playoffs.)

Not sure what’s worse, the system that betrays the talent level or the organizational denial waiting to release an “I told you so” should Cinderella’s slipper somehow fit to satisfaction in a first round-playoff matchup that shouts “We’re doing just enough, thank you.”

It’s just one game … or more of the same.

 

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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.