Hamilton's Free Throws Lead 2000-01 Wizards to Series Clinching Win

via photos.upi.com

[Note: This is the second in a series of simulated playoff series to determine the worst team in franchise history in the Bullets Forever Epic Failoff.  In our first match-up, the 5th seeded 92-93 Bullets lost to the 94-95 Bullets, sending them to the 2nd round and the 1966-67 Baltimore Bullets advanced after losing in 7 games to the 1993-94 Bullets.  Today's match-up pits the 2nd seeded 2000-01 Washington Wizards against the 2003-04 Wizards. -Jake]

WASHINGTON - Whatever 22 year old Richard Hamilton lacks in experience he more than makes up for with his poise.

Hamilton scored the last 8 points for his team as the 2000-01 Wizards defeated the 2003-04 Wizards 106-102, winning their series 4-1.  The 2003-04 Wizards will go on to the second round where they'll face the 1966-67 Baltimore Bullets.

After blowing a 14 point lead to start the quarter, Hamilton put the Wizards back on top 100-99 with a layup with 33 seconds to go.  He then cooly hit six free throws in the closing seconds to nail the coffin shut.

"Age is just a number," Hamilton said after the game.  "I've been in close games in high school, I've been in close games at Connecticut, and I've been in close games here in Washington.  This is nothing new to me."

Meanwhile in the other locker room, a similar sentiment was being expressed by the losing team.  "We need some fresher legs," said a dejected Gilbert Arenas after the loss.  "We didn't have anyone who could keep up with Rip when he was going around all those screens.  Experience is nice, but it won't help your 40 time."

When a member of the press pointed out that 10 players on the team were 25 years old or younger, Arenas responded by saying "Well, clearly that ain't young enough.  I'd rather play with the JV team than the old-timers team."

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