No one expects the Washington Wizards to beat the Philadelphia 76ers, but they might steal a game or two if they play like they did today.
They overcame a triple-double from Domantas Sabonis (19 PTS, 11 REB, 10 AST, 2 STL) in a 142-115 win in their final play-in game of the season, and looked pretty good doing it.
Bradley Beal (25 PTS, 5 REB, 4 AST, 1 BLK) and Russell Westbrook (18 PTS, 8 REB, 15 AST) led the way for the Wizards, but they got plenty of help from their teammates. There were six people in double-digits, with three others just a basket shy of pushing that total to nine. They also got a surprising boost from Daniel Gafford (15 PTS, 13 REB, 1 STL, 5 BLK) who only played 22 minutes but made a huge impact on the game.
The Wizards shot the lights out today, which isn’t always going to happen on a team with Beal and Westbrook. They shot 54 of 93 from the field (58.1%) and 14 of 28 (50%) from the three point line. They also distributed the ball well, assisting on 34 of their 54 made baskets – a 62.9% assist clip.
Again, there’s no way I’m expecting Washington to win a series against Philadelphia, considering that they lost all three regular-season contests, including a 127-101 defeat in their final regular season game in March. Beal and Westbrook were both present in that game, and Ben Simmons was missing.
However, all I’m thinking is that the Wizards, in their considerable capacity of pulling off the occasional monster game, might give us a little bit of entertainment in the first round of the playoffs. It’s going to be fun seeing them take on Simmons, Joel Embiid and Tobias Harris, even if we all have a good idea of what the series result will be.
Personally, I’m just hoping to see Beal and Westbrook lose their minds for a game or two and give the Sixers a scare. If anything, watching the Sixers have a 3-1 series lead and seeing Doc Rivers get nightmares about how his last season with the Clippers ended will be fun.