It's not that the Wizards did not deserve this win — they played great and clearly wanted to win more than the Hornets. But Charlotte just looked like an exhausted team playing its fifth game in seven days.
There were defensive lapses — Charlotte gave up 36 points to the Wizards in the first quarter, the most points they had given up in any quarter this season. Shots would not fall — the team made just eight field goals in the second half. The team was slow getting back on defense. They had many of the same problems that plagued them in the first half of their last game against the Pistons.
Except Monday night, they would not be able to overcome those mistakes.
Charlotte (28-34) saw their five-game winning streak snapped at the hands of the Washington Wizards (36-28) as they fell 95-69 Monday night at Time Warner Cable Arena.
The Wizards dominated from start to finish. John Wall took over the first quarter (11 points, two assists, two rebounds and two steals) and the rest of team took it from there. Wall finished the night with 15 points, nine assists, five boards, three steals and a block (and was supposedly not 100 percent. I call shenanigans.), Marcin Gortat finished with a game-high 20 points and the Wizards finished the night shooting 51.8 percent from the floor. Washington also outrebounded Charlotte by 12, had 20 fast break points (compared to the Hornets' 0), scored 54 points in the paint (this game after the Hornets allowed 60 points in the paint) and forced 16 turnovers by the Hornets.
Mo Williams and Al Jefferson were Charlotte's two stars tonight (shocker). Williams scored in double-digits for the tenth straight game (he finished with 19 to go with seven assists) and Jefferson finished with 14 points and five boards on 7-for-14 shooting. It is worth nothing Williams had his worst shooting night in Charlotte, finishing with 6-of-18 shooting, including 1-of-10 from deep. Also of note, Brian Roberts did not make a single field goal (went 0-of-10). After seeing those numbers, you should not be surprised to know that Charlotte shot 32.5 percent from the floor.
It's not all bad though. Lance Stephenson continued his solid play, finishing with 12 points, three rebounds, two assists and a steal in 24 minutes (and he actually made a 3-pointer!). Although Michael Kidd-Gilchrist did not have the most astounding of nights based on his box score, but played hard and hustled throughout the entire game, even when it was far out of reach. Plus, Cody Zeller did this.
Charlotte returns to the hardwood Wednesday night when they host the Sacramento Kings, which coach Steve Clifford said could mark the return of Kemba Walker.