Wittman not pleased with Wizards' perimeter defense against Knicks
The last time the Wizards played this poorly, coach Randy Wittman suggested that his team avoid watching the 23-point loss at the hands of the Brooklyn Nets in early March.
In that game, Deron Williams made 11 three-pointers.
After Tuesday’s game, Wittman can add another to the no-watch list as New York’s most storied team, the Knicks (51-26), tied a franchise record with 20 made three-pointers in a 120-99 victory.
The Wizards (29-49) trailed by as many as 31. Iman Shumpert, Chris Copeland and Steve Novak made four three-pointers each. Overall, the Knicks shot 20-for-36, or 55.6%. It was the most threes allowed in the franchise history of Washington.
During a seven-minute stretch of the third quarter, Carmelo Anthony scored 21 of his game-high 36 points.
With the loss, the Wizards can’t reach double-digit wins on the road. At 7-32, they have two left -- at Brooklyn and at the Chicago Bulls next week.
“They shot the ball extremely well from the 3 and then they took us off the dribble,” Wittman said. “We didn’t do a very good job of doing either one of those things.”
Not having Trevor Ariza hurt the Wizards because he is their best one-on-one defender and gives them their best chance at limiting Anthony. Ariza (left knee soreness) was a late scratch.
Every time the Wizards tried to make a move to close the gap, a three-pointer would turn the tide. John Wall, who had a team-high 33 points, brought them to 33-23 in the first quarter but a three-pointer by Copeland at the end extended the lead.
A 6-0 run was negated by five consecutive points by the Knicks, with Novak's three-pointer being the momentum-killer for Washington.
Wall, Martell Webster and Nene re-entered the game midway through the second quarter. Novak welcomed them with another three-pointer, this one over the charging 7-foot Nene.
Then it was Anthony who put away the game in the third quarter.
"We know he's hot and we tried to get the ball out of his hands, but he's very efficient and can score in various ways," Wall said of Anthony. "Hats off to him."