Kevin Seraphin picks up the MVP for tonight’s win versus the defending champion Miami Heat. His double-double (16 points, 10 rebounds) and 75% shooting helped boost the Wizards to their second win of the season. More importantly, he hit a lot of buckets at the most crucial times of the game. While Miami spent most of the game answering all of the Wizards’ baskets, Seraphin’s late buckets are what helped Washington gain the edge in the fourth quarter. He has been one of the most consistent players on this rotation. Oh, yeah, and did we mention that he did all of this coming off of the bench?
Bradley Beal got hot right out of the gates getting two consecutive buckets, but unfortunately picked up two quick fouls as well in the first two minutes of the game. He sat for the rest of the first quarter and really did not see much more playing time for the rest of the game due to Crawford’s production off of the bench. (He played just under 17 minutes in the game). He did however manage to score 10 points and grab a few assists, but remained cold from the three-point line going 0-3.
Dwayne Wade was one of the three players on the Heat roster to score over 20 points in the game. It should be no surprise to anyone that he picked up 24 points and three assists. His efforts were ultimately overridden by Lebron James’ triple-double (26 points, 13 rebounds, 11 assists) and Chris Bosh’s double-double (20 points, 12 rebounds). While Beal was in the game, Wade actually had some difficulty getting to the hoop, which was surprising to everyone in the building. But as soon as Beal exited, the scoring ensued.
It’s hard to pick just one aspect of the game for “The Good” after a win like the one the Wizards picked up tonight. But the one thing that stuck out in the box score was the assist number. The Wizards had 31 assists on 38 field goals. There wasn’t a lot of dribbling going on and the players were finding ways to get the open man the ball and get the bucket. It was a complete team effort as no Wizard had more than six assists in the game. Nine out of the 10 players who saw minutes tonight had at least one assist. Jordan Crawford led all the Wizards with six and Trevor Ariza (who experienced a left-calf strain during the game) picked up five. This was the sharpest that this team has looked all season.
Emeka Okafor. His stat sheet wasn’t bad; but it wasn’t all that great either. In 12 minutes of play, he had four points and five rebounds. He has essentially become a non-factor on this roster. Seraphin has clearly proven, through his effort and through his minutes, that he is the go-to big-man on this team. In the beginning, it looked like Okafor might break out of his shell as he grabbed some big rebounds in the first quarter, but ultimately Wittman had to go with the player who was going to produce versus a team that can be described with no other word but massive. It’s not that he was playing poorly on the court, but it’s that Seraphin was going to play even better and score those much needed points in the paint.
I can legitimately say that I found nothing in this game on the Wizards behalf to be worthy of falling under “The Ugly” tonight. I cannot believe that those words are actually being typed right now. The free throw shooting wasn’t great (22/29) and caused a little panic at the end of the game, but at least these guys got to the line that many times. So for tonight, I’m going to say that the ugly sat on the bench all night long.
Jan Vesely did not see the floor once this entire game. And for that, every Wizards fan is grateful.