By Dave Johnson
It’s an old coach’s cliché in sports. The film doesn’t lie. It’s actually not film anymore, but digital video viewed on laptops and ipads. Regardless the Washington Wizards reviewed their loss Wednesday in Minnesota in an effort to clean things up ahead of tonight’s game against Brooklyn.
Here is today’s Wizards Report:
The Wizards' usually reliable defense was not effective against the Timberwolves. Even though the Timberwolves only shot 40 percent from the field, they had 42 points in the paint. Part of that paint advantage was helped by points off Wizards turnovers. The Wizards turned the ball over 24 times and the Timberwolves benefited with 30 points.
Coverage of the Wizards and Nets from Brooklyn begins tonight at 7:15 on the Washington Wizards Radio Network.
After 61 games the Brooklyn Nets are a mystery. They have quality and a solid record at 35-26, but their season has been far from smooth. Avery Johnson was fired as head coach in December, and the Nets needed a strong second half to end a two-game losing streak with a win over Charlotte.
To beat the Bobcats the Nets had to overcome a bad first half when they only shot 36 percent from the field. In the second half the Nets outscored the Bobcats 56-25 to secure a win even with 25 turnovers. The Nets have committed 66 turnovers in the last three games.
Joe Johnson scored 22 points in his third game back from a left heel injury.
The last time against the Nets:
The good feeling the Wizards had after scoring 60 points in the second half of a loss in San Antonio carried over into a memorable week at home. The Wizards capped off the week with another impressive defensive performance in Friday’s 89-74 win over the Brooklyn Nets.
A game after holding the Knicks to 40 percent shooting from the field, the Wizards held the Nets 32 percent shooting from the field. After the Wizards had a 21-20 lead at the end of the first quarter, the Nets missed their first twelve shots of the second quarter to help the Wizards build a 21-point lead.
The turning point of the game came in the second quarter when the Wizards went on a 14-1 run fueled in part by Nets’ turnovers. By half time the Wizards had scored 10 points off 10 Nets’ turnovers. The Wizards finished the game with 11 steals. John Wall had 4 steals and Martell Webster had 3 steals.
The Wizards were able to establish an inside presence with Nene who had 20 points and 11 rebounds Nene was 9 of 13 shooting from the field and three of his missed shots were from the inside the restrictive arc. On defense Nene was part of a defensive effort that held All-Star Brook Lopez to 13 points on 3 of 11 shooting from the field.
“Nene’s smart. Nene’s been in the league 10 years. Nene knows little tricks of the trade. He’s sly. He gives angles. He takes angles away. He’s a student of the game. That’s a great quality that I think a lot of our young bigs are learning. It’s a trait that he can pass down to a lot of these guys.”