Martell Webster scored 21 points and was one of five players who reached double figures in points as the Wizards ended their four-game losing streak by defeating the Los Angeles Clippers 98-90 on Monday night.
Over the course of that four-game slide Wizards coach Randy Wittman felt his team lacked sufficient ball movement. With 27 assists on 37 made baskets the Wizards rediscovered a style of play that is conducive to all five guys playing together.
“We don’t have that player that you give the ball to and say give us 35 tonight and carry us,” said Wittman. “That’s not a knock on them that’s just not the make up of our team. “
Los Angeles entered Monday’s game having won three straight in Washington by an average of 20 points. But this Clippers team was without Chris Paul for the eight straight game (bruised right knee cap) and Blake Griffin who was a late scratch with a left hamstring injury.
The Wizards have seen their share of injuries this season. Bradley Beal missed his fourth consecutive game with a sore right wrist but that has opened the door for Garrett Temple. With Beal out Temple knocked down his first four shots in route to scoring a season high 15 points. For the former LSU tiger it was good to finally see some shots go down after misfiring on seven of his 11 attempts over his past three games.
“Even though I’m not making shots I try to be a pest defensively, said Temple. “I try to get my hands on a lot of balls and cause havoc. Our defensive momentum definitely helped us out offensively tonight.”
One Wizard who continues to struggle is Jordan Crawford. He entered Monday’s game having scored a total of 21 points on 29.6 percent shooting over his past four games. Against the Clippers he took an ill-advised three pointer in the second quarter and was promptly given a seat on the bench where he remained for the rest of the game.
He just has to find his rhythm when he gets in,” said Wall who had eight assists against the Clippers. “We’re still running plays for him. I think he just has to get a couple of easy shots early to get himself going. It’s frustrating when you’re not making shots and coming off the bench. Next game he may come out and get 24 points, he’s one of those players that gets hot.”
With a win over the Clippers the Wizards have now beaten four of the NBA’s six division leaders.
“When we play the way we’re capable of playing we can compete with the top teams,” said Wittman whose team has also beaten Chicago, Miami and Oklahoma City on the season.