So let's just get this out of the way so I don't have to spend the rest of this article going over it.
The Wizards are bad. Like, really bad.
They're careless with the basketball, continue to have "selfish possession" as Flip Saunders calls it, and commit fouls at a ridiculously irregular rate. With that said, the team finally did some things that needed to be done in order for them to be successful moving forward.
The team finally got some offensive production out of the Wizards new-look "big 3." This was no, Arenas, Jamison and Butler kind of performance, but it's the closest thing Wizards fans have seen since the trio's abrupt departure. John Wall, Javale Mcgee and Nick Young combined for 69 of the team's 90 points and if the Wizards are going to attempt to salvage this dreadful season, they're going to need more production like that out of those three guys. As the starters shined, the rest of the team disappeared and as a result, The Sixers' bench outscored the Washington bench 44-15.
Obviously not having Andray Blatche in the game hurts the team on offense and when Jordan Crawford and Rashard "Big Money" Lewis combine for 11 points, it's going to be hard for the Wiz Kids to pull out a win on the 2nd of a home and home. After scoring 26 points and leading by 3 after the first quarter, The Wizards seemed to be playing with a little more jump in their step. They were attacking the basket, Nick Young was making shots and JaVale McGee was a force down low. However, seven 1st quarter turnovers kept the 76ers in the game, limited Washington's ability to build a huge lead and got some players in early foul trouble. With that said, the team lead after one and fans were beginning to think that the team was going to put up a fight.
Then came the 2nd and 3rd quarter.
The inconsistencies of this team offensive production continued to haunt them as the game progressed. After taking a 26-23 lead in to the 2nd quarter, the Wizards were outscored 54-34 in the 2nd and 3rd quarters combined and for all intensive purposes, the nail was abruptly driven in to the coffin. The team then put up 30 points in the 4th quarter for the 2nd consecutive game when it was well out of reach. I guess it's nice to know that the Wizards can put up points when the game is already lost and the other team has nothing to play for.
What happened to our "leader"? Wasn't John Wall supposed to be that guy? I know he played a much better game last night than he had in the past, but at what point do Wizards fans begin to hold him accountable as a leader? When times are tough, you don't need your leader carelessly turning the ball over, throwing his arms, shrugging his shoulders and not trying to make your team better. Again, he did play MUCH better last night despite the turnovers but as I've stated from very early on this season, The Wizards need John Wall to be more of a scoring threat if they want to be successful. I don't mind the turnovers if they're coming from him attacking the basket trying to make a play versus making a dumb cross court pass to Chris Singleton to attempt a 3 point basket.
By the way, Singleton finished with no points.
For all the inconsistency issues that are talked about, the one thing that has remained consistent has been the much improved play of JaVale McGee. From start to finish, he was the only player in a Wizards uniform who performed well on both ends of the court. He was a force down low, he was able to get his shot off in the low post with regularity, and continued with his strong rebounding and block shots as he has all season. His 18 rebounds last night were the most by a Wizards player this season and his 3.2 blocks per game leads the entire NBA. He's been coming under a lot of pressure for publicly lobbying for an "All Star" spot by taking to twitter, but let's face it. The guy deserves it. As he gets more playing time, Wizards fans are starting to see why he was the first round prospect that the team thought he could become.
12 games in to the season who would've thought that the team's best player would've been anyone not named John Wall? I don't want to think that it's correlated to the team's record, but it's hard to think otherwise.