Well, the Wizards certainly played better against the Suns than they did against Indiana last Friday. But this time, they simply lost to a better team. It’s another day, another loss … the Wizards’ fourth in a row with their record now standing at 2-5. One would hope that this doesn’t become routine, but that didn’t keep members of the media from groaning “feels like last year” as they made their way to the media room to wait for Flip Saunders’ press conference.
Of course, I wasn’t operating under an “official” media capacity last season, but I can imagine letting out a sigh, shrugging my shoulders, and wondering what to ask Saunders as I did on Sunday. But this isn’t like last year. There isn’t a sense that losing is inevitable. This team conveys a strong belief that everything will come together with time, health … and more trust on offense.
The Wizards started against Phoenix not necessarily lacking energy, but were plagued by defensive mismatch problems … a theme that’s not unique to this one game. While Fabricio Oberto concentrated on Amar’e Stoudemire, Brendan Haywood had to worry about Channing Frye and his three-point shooting, spreading the court ways. Frye finished 4-8 from deep.
Haywood seemed to have trouble moving his feet fast enough to cover all the offensive looks from the Suns. At times, the spinning and turning Haywood was doing on defense looked to be some sort of interpretive dance in the paint. The Wizards center was curiously limited to 11 and a half minutes in the first half, but finished the game as a rebounding (10) and shot blocking (5) presence in his 32 total minutes.