Wizards vs. Mavericks final score: Washington blown out again in 98-75 loss to Dallas

Harrison Barnes scored 20 points and notorious #WizardsKiller Wesley Matthews added 14 points as the Mavericks defeated the Wizards for the 17th time in their last 19 tries, 98-75 on Monday night.

Bradley Beal led the Wizards in scoring with 18 points and John Wall added 11 but they didn’t get much help from anyone else, as they were the only two Washington players to crack double figures in scoring tonight.

Things were even through the first quarter, but the Mavs put the pedal to the metal in the second quarter outscoring the Wizards 31-15. Washington only scored 37 points in the first half.

The second half was only slightly better. They scored 38 points in the second half as they cobbled together their second-worst offensive output of the season.

Takeaways

John Wall plays through a migraine

John Wall was a game-time decision as he was dealing with migraine headaches throughout the day. However, the way Wall started the game, you’d have no idea.

Wall’s jumper was smooth and in rhythm early on as he connected on three of his first four jump shots and was attacking the hole and getting to the free throw line. Wall had seven points and three assists through the first quarter and it looked like the migraine wouldn’t faze him.

However, Washington’s poor shooting was contagious and spread to Wall as after that 3-of-4 start, he only made one of his final 12 shots, missed all four three-point attempts and finished the night with just 11 points.

Washington goes ice-cold from the field

The Wizards’ shooting was bad, really bad. It’s not like Dallas was playing stellar defense either. Washington just couldn’t make it from anywhere. They shot 31 percent from the field, 22 percent from beyond the arc and only 59 percent at the line.

Bradley Beal was a respectable 3-for-8 from three-point range tonight. Unfortunately, for the Wizards, the rest of the team combined to go just 4-for-24.

Washington got many open looks from distance in transition, on second-chance opportunities and had open looks in their half court offense. They just couldn’t knock any of them down as only four Wizards players (Beal, Morris, Oubre, Meeks) connected on long-distance shots all night.

Game Notes

  • Otto Porter left the game in the third quarter with a hip issue.
  • Kelly Oubre came back to earth after his career-best night in Detroit. He was 2-for-11 from the field and only made one of his five three-point attempts.
  • Mike Scott was held scoreless for the first time since December 4. You may remember that as the game where the Wizards lost to the Jazz by 47.
  • The Mavs played Yogi Ferrell and J.J. Barea at the same time for an extended stretch. Not sure if it was the shortest backcourt in NBA history, but it sure felt like it.
  • It could be worse. At least the Wizards aren’t questioning whether or not someone faked an illness.

Next up: The Wizards are back in action on Thursday night as they take on the Thunder at 8 p.m. ET.

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Top Wizards Killers of the 2015-2016 season

What is it about playing the Wizards that brings out the best in some guys?

In past years, players like Gerald Henderson, Lou Williams, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope and Khris Middelton would all have big games statistically when going up against the Wizards. Washington was able to hold these guys in check for the most part during the 2015-2016 season but there was a new batch of “Wizards Killers” that emerged.

For those new to the party, let me define what a “Wizards Killer” is.

Wizards Killer – An average or above-average player who puts up uncharacteristically huge numbers when playing against the Wizards. Players like LeBron James, Kevin Durant (well he did kind of rip the hearts out of Wizards fans… never mind), Steph Curry, Russell Westbrook, etc. are ineligible from this elite fraternity as they have multiple All-Stars appearances so it’s expected that they put up big numbers against Washington.

So who ripped the Wizards’ fans collective heart during the 2015-2016 season?

Wesley Matthews

Matthews averaged a pedestrian 12.5 points, 1.9 assists and 3.1 rebounds during the 2015-2016 season. Against the Wizards, Matthews averaged nearly 20 points more per game (32 PPG in two games) to go along with 2.5 assists and 3.5 rebounds.

Matthews had an up-and-down start to the season. There’d be nights where he’d score between 15-20 points and others where he was held to single figures. Matthews voiced his frustrations prior to the game against the Wizards and in-turn took out his frustrations by scoring 36 points on 10-17 shooting from three-point range; his highest scoring output of the season

Matthews wasn’t done there. He would score 28 points (second highest scoring output of the season) on 6-11 shooting from three-point range just six days later when the Mavericks hosted the Wizards in Dallas.      

He shot 36 percent from three-point range during the regular season but against the Wizards, that number skyrocketed to 57 percent. In addition, Matthews shot 55 percent from the field against the Wizards while shooting just 38.8 percent from the field the rest of the season.

He shot nearly 20 percentage points above his field goal shooting percentage and three-point shooting percentage as well as having his best and second best scoring games of the season against the Wizards.

That gets Wesley Matthews firmly cemented as the top Wizards Killer of 2015-2016.

Shelvin Mack

Although Mack played in just one game against the Wizards, this one stings because the Wizards waived Mack twice. Once before the start of the 2012 season and again in January 2013 after Mack re-signed just a week earlier. 

Shelvin Mack responded with 27 points, 3 rebounds, and 4 assists on March 11th as the Jazz beat the Wizards 114-93. Mack averaged just 4.5 points per game during his short tenure with the Wizards and 8.6 points per game last season with the Hawks and Jazz (Mack was traded at the deadline).

It’s clear Mack was looking for revenge against his former team as he too scored a season-high 27 points against the Wizards on 11-17 shooting. Not bad for a guy who shot 44 percent from the field during the regular season.

A player who the team waived twice comes back to burn them for 27 points; over three times his scoring average for the season. Is there anything that’s more #SoWizards than that?

Isaiah Thomas

Unlike the guys mentioned above, Thomas had four cracks at the Wizards this season. The Wizards are known to struggle against small and quick point guards and that was no different this season against Isaiah Thomas and the Celtics. 

Thomas averaged 23 points this season against the Wizards, slightly up from his season average of 22.2. But remember, three out of the four games against the Celtics this season were blowouts. The closest game between the two teams came on January 16th where the Celtics won 119-117. Sure enough, Thomas had 32 points in that game. Like the two other guys mentioned above, Thomas did his damage from three-point range shooting 47.8 percent against the Wizards compared to just 36 percent from distance during the regular season.

Yes, Thomas was an All-Star this past season. But the fact that he stands just 5’9 and was still able to torch the Wizards on four different occasions grants him eligibility to be part of the club.

Kobe Bryant

Now if this were any other year, Kobe would not be eligible to join the very selective Wizards Killer club. However, since Kobe was on his farewell tour and played for one of the worst teams in the NBA, he can be reinstated for one year.

To refresh everyone’s memory, the Wizards had just beat the Cavaliers in Cleveland the night prior to get the month of December started. So a home game against the lowly Lakers the next night would be an automatic win right?

Vintage Kobe came alive hitting big shot after big shot for the Lakers ending the game with 31 points; nearly 14 points above his season average of 17.6.

Kobe would score 12 of his 31 points in the fourth quarter as the Lakers would beat the Wizards that night. Kobe would ride into the sunset waving goodbye to all of the Laker fans that flooded Verizon Center that night making it a quasi-road game for Washington.

Honorable Mentions: Tyreke Evans (27 points, 12/11/2015), Danilo Gallinari (26 points, 1/28/2016), Zach LaVine (25 points, 3/25/2016).

Wizards at Mavericks Recap: Wizards avoid huge meltdown, hang on to win 114-111

Otto Porter scored a career high 28 points to go along with 26 from John Wall as the Wizards nearly blow 21 point lead, hang on to beat the Mavs, 114-111.

The Wizards looked to move on from last night’s fourth quarter collapse opening this game 5-6 from the field to take an early 12-5 lead. Wesley Matthews, just recently initiated into the Wizards’ Killer Fraternity, knocked down two of his first three three-pointers to start the game because of course he would. The Wizards three point defense was not pretty early as they were often left scrambling and for some reason would leave Matthews open.

John Wall got to the hole at ease in the first half including this nifty layup knifing through the Mavs’ defense.

The Wizards were up 49-42 with just two minutes to play in the half and endured a mini-letdown getting outscored 8-2 to end the quarter. Even so, the Wizards led 51-50 at halftime on 55 percent shooting.

The third quarter of this game was the Wizards’ best of the season. The Wizards opened up the half on a 17-5 run. Otto caught fire scoring 17 points on 7-8 field goals in the quarter. Gary Neal was hitting corner threes, John Wall was hitting threes late in the shot clock. The Wizards were up 90-72 and would coast to an easy win right?

The Wizards kept their turnovers in check for most of the game but started coughing the ball up in the fourth. The worst of them coming with just 32 seconds to play leading to an easy layup for the Mavs.

With the Wizards up one, and just 3.7 seconds to play; John Wall confidently walked to the line and knocked down two free throws to stretch the lead to three.

Dirk Nowitzki had a chance to tie the game but missed a three-pointer as time expired. Wizards avoid a huge meltdown, hang on 114-111.

Huge games all around: Otto Porter scored a career-high 28 points on 11-18 shooting. Otto was automatic in the third quarter knocking down 7-8 field goal attempts for 17 points in the period. John Wall’s December tear continues as he scored 26 points to go along with 16 assists. Wall looked very confident in his jump shot tonight, particularly from long range where we went 3-4. Marcin Gortat had a very nice game too logging 14 points on 7-9 shooting to go along with 12 rebounds.

Third quarter explosion: Anything the Wizards did in the third quarter worked. The team scored 39 points on 16-23 shooting (70 percent) including 6-8 (75 percent) from three-point range. Otto was unconscious, Wall was hitting threes from Steph Curry’s range, defensive rotations were crisp, and the ball was swinging from side to side. This was by far the team’s best quarter of the season as they stretched the lead out to 21 at one point.

Fourth quarter collapse: The Wizards were an ice cold 3-16 to start the fourth quarter. You could tell that the team tightened up and doubt started creeping into their minds. Shots that were falling in the third quarter weren’t falling in the fourth. The defense was lagging often leaving Mavs shooters wide open. Wesley Matthews hit just one three-pointer in the fourth quarter but J.J. Barea knocked down four.

As great as the Wizards were scoring 39 in the third quarter; they gave up 39 in the fourth. This game had #SoWizards written all over it but Nowitzki couldn’t hit a three-pointer as time expired to send the game into overtime.

Recap: Matthews Hits 10 Threes, Drop Wiz 116-104.

Wesley Matthews burned the Wizards with 36 points on 10-17 shooting from three-point range as the Mavericks beat the Wizards, 116-104. Once again, John Wall played very well logging 28 points, 10 assists, 4 rebounds, and 5 steals, before bruising his knee in the fourth quarter, but it wouldn’t be enough.

After starting Ryan Hollins at center for the second straight game, the Wizards quickly made an adjustment to go back to their smaller lineup. With Wall-Beal-Temple-Dudley-Blair on the floor, the Wizards were able to get out in transition and get some easy points against the Mavericks.

The Wizards used a 7-0 run to erase an early deficit to lead 14-10 midway through the quarter.  John Wall would find DeJuan Blair (can’t believe I’m typing that) who finished with a floater in the lane.

The small ball lineup bit the Wiz a little bit in the first quarter as they gave up six layups but even so, trailed by just one, 29-28 after the first.

Once again, Gary Neal started out the second quarter firing away as he knocked down two jumpers to start the quarter. Ramon Sessions then hit an acrobatic layup from behind the backboard as the Wizards regained the lead 36-34 at the 9:56 mark.

The Wizards then transitioned to their even smaller lineup of Wall-Neal-Temple-Porter-Dudley to go on a quick 8-0 run. The Wizards utilized a 18-7 run to take 48-41 lead. Gary Neal knocked down a corner three to give the Wizards a 10 points lead and it felt like the Wiz might be able to take a firm grip on this game.

That wouldn’t be the case as the Mavs closed the quarter on a 6-0 but the Wizards still held a 58-55 lead at halftime.

The Mavs carried over their hot shooting to start the third, mainly Wesley Matthews. Matthews scored 14 points in the third quarter including 4-5 from three-point range. He was knocking down contested threes, uncontested threes, it didn’t matter. Whenever he released the ball, it was going in.

The Wizards wouldn’t lay down though. John Wall also had himself quite the quarter scoring 14 points as well. There was a stretch in the quarter where Wall scored 12 straight points for the Wizards.

Towards the end of the third quarter, Wall took an outlet pass the length of the court, got fouled hard and made the bucket to cut the lead to one:

It felt like this could be the turning point the Wizards needed.

However, the Mavs regained the lead 87-84 going into the fourth.

Once again, Matthews was scorching hot to start the fourth knocking down his first three three-pointers. The Wizards went with the super small-ball lineup again of Wall-Beal-Neal-Porter-Dudley and double-teamed the post which left them scrambling on defense. Matthews was the beneficiary.

The Wizards made one last push when John Wall found Bradley Beal in the corner for three to cut the lead to six with just with just minutes to play. With the game all but out of reach, Wall banged knees with Jeremy Evans and had to be helped to the locker room. Not a pretty site for Wizards fans.

The Wiz scrapped tonight but the ball didn’t bounce their way in the second half. Mavs win 116-104.

The box score doesn’t tell the whole story: Yes the Wizards were out-rebounded 50-31, but they also took 13 more shots than the Mavericks tonight. The Wizards scrapped on defense, rotated fairly well on defense, dove for the 50/50 balls; but the ball seemed to bounce the Mavs’ way in the second half. It doesn’t help when a guy hits 10 threes on you either.

Wizards only commit 6 turnovers: The Wizards took care of the ball tonight only committing six turnovers. As a result, the Wizards got 13 more field goal attempts than the Mavs (89-76). They didn’t win but it was nice to see this team value the basketball and not make lazy passes.

Free Throw Shooting: The Wizards shot 12-21 (57 percent) from the free throw line tonight. That’s really, really bad. DeJuan Blair went 1-3, OK, no surprise. Ramon Sessions 3-6, not ideal. Bradley Beal was 3-6, which is not OK.

Recap: Wizards at Blazers

Photo by Sam Forencich/NBAE via Getty Images
Photo by Sam Forencich/NBAE via Getty Images

LaMarcus Aldridge surprised everyone with his decision to play tonight scoring 26 points even with a torn ligament in his left thumb. Word got out that LaMarcus would need surgery to repair his thumb but he delayed the surgery and is going to play through the injury.

Damian Lillard and Wesley Matthews scored 20 and 19 points respectively as the Blazers erased a 14 point deficit to come back to beat the Wizards 103-96.

The Wizards were hot early in this one and it felt like they had an opportunity to blow this one open. The Wiz raced out to a 13-2 lead starting 6-9 from the field. Both Paul Pierce and Bradley Beal came out aggressive and knocked down shots. This was a good sign as the Wizards sometimes lacked that aggression in the OKC game. On the flip side, the Blazers started 0-8 from the field and found themselves down 12 at the end of the 1st quarter.

Damian Lillard and Wesley Matthews started to heat up in the 2nd quarter. Back to back threes by the back court mates cut the Wizards lead to seven. The Wizards were very protective of the basketball and did not commit a turnover in the first quarter. That did not spill over to the second quarter as the Wiz committed six turnovers in the period.

The Wizards used a 5-0 run to end the quarter including a tough fall away jumper from John Wall to stretch the lead to 55-45 at half.

They say the first five minutes of the third quarter are very important and dictate the rest of the game. Well, the Wizards played very poorly during this five minute stretch. As the Wizards lead was dwindling, Paul Pierce hit a corner three to regain some momentum. The 3 was Pierce’s 2,000th career 3 pointer. A feat only three other players have reached.

Again, Matthews regained his shooting touch in the third quarter hitting threes on back-to-back possessions. Nene tried to answer on a 3 of his own which he missed badly. This whole Nene shooting threes and is a stretch 4 needs to stop immediately, like NOW. The Blazers ended the quarter on a 11-2 run to cut the lead to one going into the fourth.

The Wizards executed pretty poorly down the stretch. Turnovers and bad shots allowed the Blazers to take the lead and regain control of the game. Martell Webster got 19 minutes off the bench tonight. He shot just 1-5 from the field and continued his run of missing threes when the game is on he line.

In the end, it was too much LaMarcus Aldridge and three point shooting from the Blazers that prevented the Wiz from coming back in this one. Wiz head to Denver tomorrow night to try and stop this losing streak.