Story By: Sol Tucker
Photos By: Sol Tucker
Just a couple of days ago it would appear that the Wizards had been left for dead when it came to the playoff possibilities, well tonight it appears that Kristaps Porzingis and the bench crew came to the rescue, torching the Celtics, 130-111.
Porzingis led the way with 32 points and 13 rebounds and has been the only rising star on this team since the All Star Break. Without Porzingis in the lineup, the Wizards could easily be as much as 5 games back out of the play in game, instead they are now just 2.5 back of Chicago. Big problem… there are just 6 games left in the season.
After the game Wizards Head Coach Wes Unseld Jr. said there is still hope and liked what we saw tonight.
“Probably the best pace, for 36-to-40 minutes, that we’ve seen all year,” Unseld Jr. said. “After makes, misses, were able to accumulate quite a few fast break points. Not all those were just off of misses. So being able to play with pace and kind of get stuff early in the clock I thought helped us.”
Deni Avdija matched a career high with 25 points and added 10 rebounds for Washington. Monte Morris scored 19 points.
Avdija, who has been criticized for by fans for the up and down scoring roller coaster this season certainly looks as if he has finally found the right mix of perimeter shooting as well not being cautious about driving the basket.
“Trying to make the right decisions, trying to be aggressive,” Avdija said. “I guess I’m just not thinking, I’m just playing my game, making plays for others.”
For the Celtics, they seem to know their playoff road is right around the corner and by the fourth quarter of this game, they knew tonight was just not going to be it.
Jason Tatum played just 31:52, and no other Boston player reached that total. Tatum, Marcus Smart and Al Horford did not play at all in the fourth quarter. Brown and Derrick White — the team’s other two starters — played 2:39 each in that period. … Smart scored 14 points and Malcolm Brogdon added 13.
The Wizards get another shot at Orlando on Friday night at home. This is a must win game in this 6-game stretch if they have any hopes of a play in game by the end of next week.