Crossed Up and Shot Down in LA — Wizards at Clippers, DC Council 77 | Wizards Blog Truth About It.net

Crossed Up and Shot Down in LA — Wizards at Clippers, DC Council 77

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Updated: April 6, 2016

The D.C. Council… TAI’s highlights, seen and heard, from each Washington Wizards game. Now: Wizards at Clippers, Game 77, April 3, 2016, from Los Angeles, CA, via Kyle Weidie (@truth_about_it). Image below via instagram.com/truthaboutit.

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At some point on a fairly nice but sort of chilly Sunday afternoon in the District, the unofficial but unequivocal end to the Wizards season was commemorated with … alcohol. And some camaraderie. Plenty of camaraderie, which is for good times and bad; in real life (IRL) and/or on the Twitter machine.

So at the corner of a neighborhood sports bar in Petworth, D.C., gathered a handful of cohorts in Wizards coverage on this very site. Two Adams, a Troy, a Bryan, and then another guy we know named Dean. Like the Wizards, not all made it by the 3:30 p.m. ET start time.

J.J. Redick burning a disinterested Wizards defense in maneuvering around screens (18 game points, 8 first quarter points); John Wall gathering two quick fouls and one missed layup; Chris Paul (9 first quarter points) making the acquisition of solid gold midrange jumpers look easy; the early ignition of Jamal Crawford; and a urinated (or pissed) off Randy Wittman, early—all these instances fell off into the abyss for late arrivers seeking libations nonetheless.

Halftime came before anyone knew what hit them. The Wizards trailed by 11. Not enough beers for a blur quite yet but everyone did double- or triple-takes when the ‘Zards couldn’t muster much in a second quarter featuring heavy play from a lineup of L.A. randos (Cole Aldrich, Wesley Johnson, Austin Rivers, and our dear old pal Jeff Green; those four finished plus-1 in four minutes on the court together, which is 8.3 percent of a 100 percent game).

In that same second quarter, John Wall (8 minutes) and Bradley Beal (9.5 minutes) saw significant action, as one would expect in desperate times. The result: a combined 1-for-9 from the field with Beal missing all five of his attempts and Wall making the lone bucket. There was a fun, if not merely notable, moment at the eight-minute mark of the second with the Wizards down 31-40: Wall missed a 19-foot jumper (Beal offensive rebound), Marcus Thornton missed a 3 in one corner (Jared Dudley offensive rebound), and Beal missed a 3 in the other corner all on one trip. That’s the point when I ordered the first round of shots of Jameson—just for showing up.

Things got interesting in the third quarter. And it wasn’t just the application of bar food to stomach (with beer). It was the Wizards. From the very start of the third up until the Clippers decided to counter with a 13-2 run, the Wizards had managed to outscore L.A. 10-0. They closed a 49-60 halftime deficit to 59-60 real quick (3:42 of court action). Markieff Morris scored 5 points, Marcin Gortat scored 3, and Otto Porter scored 2. Wall (4 assists) and Beal (1 assist) got their teammates going during the 10-0 punch of #WittmanJava out of intermission. But then the Clippers as a team flexed back, each Paul, Redick, Blake Griffin, and DeAndre Jordan scored in the ensuing 13-2 run over the next three minutes that put Los Angeles back up by 12 points, 73-61. According to the sparse notes I was somehow able to take on mobile phone, it was a blur of a Redick corner 3 and CP3 taking it to Otto P. The Wizards, nonetheless, matched the Clippers in points, 24, over the course of the penultimate period.

As has been the case for most of the season, the Wizards team made Wizards watchers care with their basketball play. And then they lost (which currently happens at 48% of the time the team steps on the court; but then again, the games where the team never show up would lower the True Winning Percentage—#analytics). The Washington basketball team fought tooth and nail—nine different Wizards scored in the fourth quarter. But all I really remember is the camaraderie, exchanges of excruciating moments, the ups, the downs, complaining about referees, the standing by the bar, the shifting standings in the Eastern Conference, the looking away, the knee-bending moments: every time the Clippers scored a bucket, which is all else I can recall, your honor.

Austin Rivers hit a 3, stared down the Wizards’ bench, 10-point Clippers cushion. But Beal answered with his own 3, this time, 84-91. Then Jamal Crawford—did that 3 go off the glass? If it looked like it did, might as well believe it did (and then take the second, of only two on the day, shots of Jameson). Ramon Sessions fought back with a floater, Blake Griffin answered by spin-cycling and going off the glass versus Morris. The Wizards played Hack-a-Jordan with about three minutes left in the day—and it worked! Wall somehow fired a 3, and made it, and Morris made a free throw, but missed one.

The Wizards were just short of totally there, and only desperation Porter and Wall 3s could subsequently counter 14-foot Paul jumpers after Clippers offensive rebounds, Crawford lobs to Jordan dunks, and Paul 3-point daggers to put the Wizards, scrappy as a French work week, away by six points with 21 ticks remaining. “Good to see everyone, enjoy the rest of your Sunday,” I said once it ended and as I escaped the bar and the game, but remembering the camaraderie.


M.V.P. — Chris Paul (27 points, 12 assists, 2 turnovers)

L.V.P. — John Wall and Bradley Beal (23 combined points, 7-30 FGs, 17 assists, 5 turnovers)

X-Factor — Jamal Crawford (19 points, 6 assists, 4 rebounds in 25 minutes); Otto Porter was decent for the Wizards (14 points, 4-7 3-pointers, 8 rebounds in 32 minutes)

That Game Was — A five-point loss. It was Washington’s 13th two-possession loss (within six points) over 40 total losses on the season. Twenty-one (21) losses have been by 10 or more points, 14 losses by 17 or more points, and 9 losses by 20 or more points (we could go on).


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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.