It’s hard to think of anyone on the Wizards that should be the game MVP after the massacre we all witnessed tonight on the Verizon Center court. However, if Gilbert Arenas put a gun to my head and forced me to pick one guy, I guess it would have to be Martell Webster. By default. Way back when this game was respectable in the first half, Webster came in off the bench and gave the Wizards a spark. He came in and immediately began hitting perimeter shots, showed a lot of hustle and collected 4 rebounds to add to his 16 points in 24 minutes of play.
Jordan Crawford entered tonight’s game as Washington’s second leading scorer behind Nene at 12.3 PPG and while he may have finished up with a team high in points, the points don’t tell the whole story. Some of those points came in the 4th quarter when the game was well out of reach. I remember a couple of cases where Jordan just chucked up a 30 foot 3 pointer with 17 or 16 seconds left on the shot clock either for his own stats, or to help the game go by quicker. Either way, it was a poor showing and set the wrong example. In a lot of ways, he played like the anti Tony Parker.
Tony Parker. What more needs to be said when you hear that name? Right from the opening tip off, Parker began to take over the game. He scored six of San Antonio’s first eight points and finished the first quarter with a total of nine. The tone was set: it was going to be a long day for the Wizards. San Antonio had seven players finish in double figures and they improved to 12-3 on the season. Watching The Spurs play basketball is almost like a physical form of poetry. With all the cuts, movement, and screens, it genuinely seems like everyone knows exactly where they’re supposed to be and when the ball will get to them. I know that seems like a pretty elementary thing to expect from a basketball team, but I’ve yet to see it from this Wizards team. It all starts and ends with the point guard being able to orchestrate the offense. The Spurs have one, and the Wizards have yet to find a way to replace John Wall.
The Wizards, for as bad as the final score really was, played a decent first half. They were hustling down the court, playing aggressive defense and did a good job of establishing a low post presence with Seraphin finishing the half with 10 points. It was a 54-48 game with 3 minutes left in the half before San Antonio really started to pull away. By halftime, they stretched their lead to 12 and never looked back. However, the Wizards did manage to keep the game close for 22 minutes. The starters came out and established a good pace to the game. For 22 minutes, it really felt like the Wizards were going to be able to take this late into the 4th quarter like they had in all but one of their previous 11 games. Webster lead the way with 13 points and the Wizards had three guys in double figures by the half. There was some optimism in the air.
The second half meltdown. If basketball fans want to see an example of a good team and a bad team, look no further than highlights of the second half of this game. With all the off the ball movement, great passing, and excellent perimeter shooting, San Antonio stretched their lead to 20 before fans could get back from getting a beer at the concession stand. The game, in essence, was over. The crowd was a non factor as Spurs fans made their presence felt and the boo’s rained down from the upper level.
When you’re 0-12, everything is ugly. However, Jan Vesely remains the ugliest of all the ducklings, both literally and figuratively. The number six overall pick from last year’s draft came in to the game with more fouls than points (30 and 29 non respectively). The total went up to 34 and 29 with his lack of offense and 4 fouls in 7 minutes. Can we trade him for Andray Blatche? #newtraditions