Dallas uses a fourth quarter 13-0 run to defeat the Wizards 112-107.
After leading almost the whole game, it was a sloppy opening to the fourth that ultimately doomed Washington. Leading by as much as 12 points in the third quarter, they looked well on their way to their 42nd win of the year. The team was getting any shot they wanted and Dallas looked gassed the whole night. But thanks to a bevy of turnovers, bad shot selection, and poor defense, Dallas was able to climb back into the game.
John Wall and Bradley Beal did all they could to secure the win, combining for 50 of Washington’s 107 points. Wall was regularly attacking the basket as the smaller guards of Dallas had a tough time stopping him. Beal on the other hand was doing his damage with mid-range and three point bombs. Bojan Bogdanovic added 19, but lead the team with four turnovers.
It was a three wave attack from Seth Curry, Harrison Barnes, and Dirk Nowitzki that not only spearheaded the 13-0 for Dallas, but secured the win late as Washington began to rally back. Barnes fished with a team high 22 points and Curry finished with 19. However, it was Nowitzki’s late clutch baskets that secured the win. Nowitzki finished with 20 points.
If Washington wants to be a true contender for the championship, they are going to have to address their largest achilles heel, their defense. Currently ranked 22 in the league, the Wizards defense hurts them more than helps. No team has ever won a championship, let alone make it to the Finals, with a defense lower than sixth. While Washington has the talent to make some noise in the playoffs, the noise won’t be fully heard if their defense does not improve.
Washington will look to get off their two game skid when they face the Bulls on March 17. Dallas will look to extend their winning streak to two against Philadelphia on the same night.