Wizards post season-low 87 points in loss to Mavericks originally appeared on NBC Sports Washington
The Washington Wizards lost to the Dallas Mavericks 109-87 on Saturday night. Here are five takeaways from what went down…
As the losses continue to pile up for the Washington Wizards, they are doing nothing to suggest the play-in tournament, much less the playoffs, are a realistic possibility.
After losing to the Mavs on Saturday night, the Wizards have now lost 11 of 14 games dating back to the All-Star break. Saturday was their third straight loss as they now embark on a six-game road trip starting with the Raptors in Tampa Bay, FL.
The Mavs did a good job making the Wizards pay for their mistakes. The Wizards had 14 turnovers, which Dallas converted into 23 points on the other end.
Washington also couldn’t score, which has been a trend lately. Their 87 points were a season-low.
Bertans and Smith played
The Wizards got some reinforcements on Saturday as Davis Bertans and Ish Smith returned from their injuries. Bertans had been out since March 18 with a calf strain, while Smith hadn’t played since Feb. 12 with a quad issue.
Neither guy made a particularly big impact on Saturday. Bertans scored 11 points, while Smith had five points and two assists.
It may take some time for both Bertans and Smith to find their rhythm and play their way into midseason form. The Wizards have to hope that happens sooner than later given where they are in the standings.
Rui and Beal were out
Because the 2020-21 Wizards are not allowed to have nice things, the news that Bertans and Smith would play was followed by the news Rui Hachimura was a late scratch due to a right shoulder injury. The injury was not previously disclosed, though Hachimura was seen wearing tape on his shoulder while playing in Thursday’s game.
The Wizards were also missing Bradley Beal for the fourth straight game. He had been a game-time decision in recent games, but head coach Scott Brooks ruled him out during his pregame press conference on Saturday.
Even with Bertans back in the fold, the Wizards had trouble generating 3-point shots. They went just 5-for-25 from three for the night. It was the first time since 2016 that the Wizards have made five or fewer threes in consecutive games.
Three-point shooting has been a problem for the Wizards all season, so much so that you can bet it will be a big priority for them in the summer. They need to make their offense more efficient and also create space to maximize Russell Westbrook’s driving ability.
Lopez played well
One of the few constants for the Wizards in this rollercoaster of a season has been the play of 33-year-old veteran Robin Lopez. The big man has enjoyed the most efficient season of his career and he was excellent once again on Saturday.
Lopez had 18 points (8-9 FG) and five rebounds against the Mavs. He had 14 points in 15 minutes in the first half. Lopez did much of his work against Boban Marjanovic and with his signature hook shot.
For as much that has not gone as expected for the Wizards this season, Lopez has been exactly what they hoped he would be when they signed him in free agency. He’s stayed healthy and has given them consistent production on both ends of the floor.