Six Wizards players scored in double figures led by John Wall with 25 points, 10 assists, 6 rebounds, and 7 steals. Bradley Beal chipped in with 20 points, 18 of which coming in the second half as the Wizards hang on for a much-needed win against the Hornets, 109-106.
Like we’ve become accustomed to, the Wizards fell behind early in this one due to the hot shooting from the Hornets who knocked down 10 of their first 14 shots. With Markieff Morris out due to a foot injury, Jason Smith was the first player off of the Wizards bench and he contributed right away. Smith knocked down several mid-range jumpers and was in the right place at the right time as the Wizards used a 7-0 to cut the Hornets lead to 2, 43-41, midway through the second quarter.
Nicholas Batum would hit a tough three-pointer followed by a close-in jumper as the Hornets had a 54-49 advantage at halftime.
After a 10-0 run by the Hornets in the third quarter, the Wizards flipped the script with a 10- run of their own led by opportunistic defense leading to easy buckets on the other end for the home squad. Wall poked the ball away on the defensive end leading to an Otto Porter layup as Wall is now the leading steal-man in Wizards franchise history.
The Wizards outscored the Hornets 38-23 to take a 87-77 lead into the fourth quarter.
The Hornets would sting back. Marco Belinelli tried to force his way into the Wizards Killer club with three three-pointers in the fourth quarter to keep the Hornets in this game. Things got testy with Wall and Belinelli as Wall went up for a layup, thought he got fouled, only to give Belinelli his piece of mind resulting in a technical.
John Wall would hit two elbow jumpers down the stretch to close this game out as the Wizards hang on and win, 109-106.
John Wall turns in a terrific performance
As mentioned, Wall finished the night with 25 points, 10 assists, 6 rebounds, and 7 steals tonight, anointing him as the Wizard with the most steals in franchise history. It’s easy sometimes to take Wall for granted as he’s often left alone on an island but nights like these remind you how special of a player he is. Wall has yet to notch a triple-double this season, but don’t worry, it’s on its way.
Bradley Beal starts off cold but ends strong
Bradley Beal started off ice cold missing his first six shots as he scored just two points in the first half. Beal flipped the script in the second half with 18 points, 11 of which coming in the third quarter and was a major part of the Wizards big run. Even with a cold first half, Beal was cool and collective in the second half and didn’t force shots. The three ball started to fall for him (3/7) and he hit several key mid-range jumpers down the stretch for this team. After a 0/6 start, Beal went 6/10 the rest of the way. Nice to see him bounce back.
Start the Kelly Oubre hype train
Kelly Oubre scored 12 points to go along with 7 rebounds in his starter role tonight. As mentioned, Morris sat out tonight’s game due to a foot injury so we saw the “lineup of death” right from the get-go. To no surprise, Oubre looks way more confident playing alongside the starters as he’s reaped the benefits of the John Wall effect. He took some gambles on defense again tonight but they paid off (2 steals) and resulted in easy baskets for the Wizards. I don’t think Oubre should be inserted as a starter if Morris is healthy, however, he’s become a much-needed spark for this team.