Wizards vs Pacers Final Score: Bad Habits Creep Back Late and Lead to 93-89 Loss

March 29, 2012; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Washington Wizards guard Shelvin Mack (22) tries to maintain control of the ball as Indiana Pacers shooting guard George Hill (3) defends at Bankers Life Fieldhouse. Mandatory credit: Michael Hickey-US PRESSWIRE

Does anyone have Dave Hopla's phone number? Shouldn't we be speed dialing him repeatedly at this point? I for one am willing to sit outside his house with a boombox and play some romantic tunes until he is willing to come back and teach the Wizards to shoot FTs. Much of this loss can be hung on the Wizards failing to hit the freebies, although there were other culprits at large....

Such as the complete mental breakdowns we keep seeing lately in the 4th quarter. Maybe we can mark this as an improvement, as the wheels are no longer falling off in the fourth and the team is keeping the game within reach to make the pain all the more intense at the end. However, the ball movement that got the Wizards out in front in the 1st half completely disappeared in the 4th quarter. Much of this falls on the shoulders of the guards, as both John Wall and Jordan Crawford made several terrible decisions as the game wound down. Instead of trusting in what worked in the first half, the Wizards offense screeched to a halt in the halfcourt which invariably led to a contested Wall or Crawford jumper.

To sum up, one can't be mad, but one can't be entirely pleased either. The team is competing and you are seeing several players (Seraphin, Booker) taking remarkable strides as the season winds down. However, there are still bad habits to be broken (hence the smoking metaphor) and as some of us know, smoking is a pain to give up. Speaking as someone who has been quit for two months, I still find myself craving a cigarette at least once every day. I'm sure that Jordan Crawford feels the same about his jumpshot.

Now to the jump...

  • Cartier Martin has earned himself another 10 day contract. Give him back his locker next to John Wall.
  • Chris Singleton came out playing perhaps his best minutes since the first week of the season. It is unfortunate that after that brief offensive flurry he basically disappeared and lost Danny Granger consistently off pick and pops and screen and rolls.
  • Jordan Crawford.....is quickly becoming the new Nick Young argument. His shooting in the 2nd and the 3rd kept the Wizards in the game. But he just had a horrible string of possessions late in the 4th which culminated with him pound the ball through the court and failing to go around John Wall.
  • Not helping matters is his seeming allergy to big men. Crawford continually put Nene and Seraphin in poor position under the basket, forcing either a TO or the center to pass it back out and reset.
  • Good game plan for Roy Hibbert tonight as Nene played much more solid defense and the Wizards quick doubled him throughout the game. However, like the previous outing, Hibbert took over late as the Wizards were forced to stop doubling in the waning moments.
  • Which leads me to pose the question, where was the P&R between Wall and Nene tonight? With Hibbert sitting for wide swathes of the game, it would have behoover
  • Jan Vesely's first jumpshot demonstrates that the form is there for it to be effective. His follow up airball demonstrates why he is so hesitant to take it.
  • Following on that thought, Ves' monster block was a delight and a continual reminder of how constant hustling leads to good things. However, that same aggression lead to some terrible fouls in the second half that was a large part of letting the Pacers back into the game.
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