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Live Game 62 Blog: Washington Wizards vs. Charlotte Bobcats

Got to the game early to see Oleksiy Pecherov go through many, many warm-up shots (Let me clarify, I didn’t get there to watch Stewie shoot, it just happened). Cat has some dedication to the game, his warm-ups included around 11 or so shots from half-court…finishing on his first make.

I’m sure you all read this Wizards Insider quote about the Air Canada Centre and the Verizon Center:

Jordan on the Air Canada Centre, where the Wiz had lost four straight: "It's a great environment to play. This crowd gets into it man and you're really at a disadvantage if you don't have the confidence and the veteran poise to get through it."

In three years covering the Wizards, I've never heard an opposing coach or player said that about Verizon Center, which too often resembles the gym in Vegas during summer league. At the VC, the staff has to put up a Duke logo or picture of the Dallas Cowboys to get fans to make noise. Pathetic.

Tonight’s game was no exception from the list of the pathetic (which Mr. Irrelevant believes is the norm for the NBA)…..not many butts in the seats to start (can’t decide if it’s half-full or half-empty). Nonetheless, I don't think DJ Styles and Blonde should be up for promotion.

1st Quarter

10:33 - Jason Richardson has a decent contingent of fans around – he knocks down a trey. Offensively, the Wizards can’t take advantage of a mismatched Matt Carroll on Antawn Jamison.

The sound system @ Verizon is pretty jacked. A group of kids, tourists from North Carolina I reckon’, start a Bobcats cheer. This leads to boos and Go Home chants from the upper deck, The Hill.

7:36 – Jason Richardson has 8 already, 13-8 cats. The Wizards look like they’ve never played together on offense.

6:47 – A Brendan Haywood dunk brings a little life to the crowd, 13-10 Charlotte.

5:19 – Down 17-12, Eddie Jordan calls timeout. The open spot on the floor is the FT line extended high post, but the Wiz can't get anything done there.

1:50 – Raymond Felton has been allowed to get where he wants....more so J-Rich, who has 16 points.

Dominic McGuire looks like he's still thinking when he plays.

1:37 – Othella Harrington is still getting time in the first quarter of NBA games? Not bad for the first pick of the second round in ’96 I guess.

Down 35-21, I’m not sure what went wrong for the Wizards in the first quarter, so I’ll go with everything. But if I had to name something, it would be Ray Felton running the team (6 assists for him), which led to 16 first quarter points for Jason Richardson and 9 for Matt Carroll, including a 3 at the buzzer

Antawn Jamison has already had numerous complaints to the refs over non-calls.

2nd Quarter

10:09 – Domininc McGuire stays with the hustle swag, offensive rebound.

8:10 - At least Roger Mason Jr. is in the game to get the crowd going….what? Can’t complain about his quick 8 points.

6:05 – Felton comes back in the game. 44-34 Bobcats, the Wizards were able to cut a once 19 point lead to 10 while Boykins was filling in for Felton.

Nick young gets caught having to pass while in air too much. The Bobcats have been physical with Jamison so far, but no ill effects of the back are noticeable.

I still think DeShawn Stevenson should start, but I do like Roger Mason in the line-up with Daniels, Jamison, Haywood, and Songaila a little better.

Raymond Felton has had some moves making Antonio Daniels look silly.

1:37 – After 16 in the first, Jason Richardson is held scoreless in the 2nd until this point….he pushes his point total to 20 in a minute.

The Bobcats keeps their lead at 54-47 after they tip in an AD lay-up miss.

Good to see that every 3-point make by the Wizards is helping keep babies off the streets, as one of the Blues gives $100 to DC Teen Pregnancy Prevention for every one. 396 on the year equals $39,600.

At the half: The Bobcats have only taken 4 FTs, making 2. The Wiz are 8-10 from the line. Washington has 6 turnovers, not bad; Charlotte has 4.

3rd Quarter

9:56 – Another off night for DeShawn Stevenson, a missed 3 by him leads to Bobcat fast-break points.

9:33 – Then he hits one. 9:01 – Then he misses one. [The Lock Smith is 1-4 from 3 point land in the first 3 minutes. Is that how you thought the Wiz should start the 3rd?] 59-50 Bobcats.

Brendan Haywood looks a little lazy on D tonight…..hope what went down against the Raptors didn’t start anything. Also from Wizards Insider:

Neither Daniels nor Brendan Haywood saw action in the fourth quarter and overtime as Jordan went with some funky and Blatche. I was watching Daniels and Haywood down thrilled with it but Jordan's move paid off as Andrea Bargnani while Mason and Young hit big shots from the guard spot.

7:14 – Jason Richardson is steady mobbin’ the Wizards. A lay-up then a 3 (11th assist from Felton) gives J-Rich 27 points while he dreams of a Golden State of Mind.

Teams really don’t give a damn about Antonio Daniels on the perimeter. Can’t wait until Gilbert the PG is back to spread the court.

5:58 – The Giving Matt Carroll Too Much Space lesson is still in session. His 3, giving him 18 points, puts the score at 67-56 Bobcats.

4:40 - I knew Raymond Felton was good, but I never realized his handles were that sick....along with the 29 point confidence of J Richardson.

3:56 – Jamison misses a three, but he got hit….no call. He’s the Rodney Dangerfield of the NBA I guess.

3:18 – Odd offense for the Wiz: Roger Mason gets the ball in the post, feeds it to Blatche at the 3 point line who drives and hits an open McGuire with a sweet pass for the dunk. 71-62 Bobcats.

1:14 – I haven’t seen a selfish Blatche on offense too many times…nice to set up D-Mac for an open look. He gets fouled and only makes one free throw. Wiz down 78-70.

0:18 - Sick sick sick reverse dunk by J-Rich. He caught DeShawn Stevenson in a deep sleep with a baseline cut. 10 point game after 3 - 80-70

4th Quarter

Dominic McGuire (getting a lot of run) Roger Mason, Nick Young, Andray Blatche and DeShawn Stevenson start the 4th.

9:18 – A bunch of junk outside attempts from the Wizards as they don’t score a point until now – Nick Young making the 2nd of two FTs. 82-71 Bobcats.

Took awhile for Jamison and Haywood to get in. The Wiz get their first FG, 3 by Antawn, at the 8:33 mark.

7:40 – Jared Dudley out fights Brendan Haywood for an offensive rebound.

7:26 – Nick Young keeps picking up fouls, his 5th. Eddie leaves him in.

5:24 – Good, unselfish pass by a semi-open AJ at the 3 point line to a wide open Stevenson open for a 3 in the corner. It’s a miss. 86-76 Bobcats, DeShawn only has 7 points.

4:03 – Nick Young picks up his 6th foul on the offensive end. Good call, he did put his arm out to Jason Richardson on the drive.

3:21 – Antonio Daniels has back to back 2 dunk games. Wow. 89-79 Bobcats.

2:28 – As the night goes….DeShawn hits a leaning 3 from several feet beyond the arc with 3 seconds on the shot clock. 89-82

1:40 – AJ’s deuce cuts the Bobcat lead to 5, but Charlotte is able to get offensive rebounds off 2 missed Matt Carroll 3 pointers. Typical of the way the Wiz have played this game.

Uninspired Basketball.

0:35 – Matt Carroll makes a colossal mistake. He fouls the Wizards off the ball leading to 2 Antonio Daniels FT makes and the ball for Washington. Roger Mason proceeds to hit a 3 with 28 seconds left. 92-89 Bobcats.

With a 4 second difference, do you foul? The Wizards give back court pressure of course, but a breaking Carroll gets free and Pecherov fouls him.

Do you play D instead of fouling? Carroll surely was going to pull the ball out and not shoot. I guess even with the 4 second difference, the Wiz could not count on getting an offensive rebound – just like a minute ago. Matt makes both, 94-89 Cats.

Jamison tip, Boykins FTs, Jamison 3…..J-Rich only makes 1 of 2. Wizards down 3, 97-94 with the ball and 14 seconds left.

0:10 - Smart foul by Dudley – looks like Roger Mason could have gotten a shot off, possibly giving him 2 FTs, but the call was on the floor…nonetheless, he makes both. 97-96 Bobcats – 99 after two J-Rich FT makes.

No timeouts for the Wizards means that Washington can’t advance the ball, nor keep the Bobcats from fouling them.

0:05.6 - Not sure if they meant to foul DeShawn Stevenson, but they did. Down 3, he’s gotta miss the 2nd one.

He did, no dice for the Wiz on the rebound.

Grades: The Wizards got an F in almost every aspect of the game, except for one; I give them a A- for extending the game, a loss to the Bobcats, 100-97.

AJ had a chance to throw up a 3 pointer from half court at the buzzer. Live action looked as if he might have gotten fouled. The replay shows that he really didn’t have a complaint……or is it that Rodney Dangerfield thing again?

The Charlotte Bobcats have won a franchise record 5 in a row. Jason Richardson had 34 points, DeShawn Stevenson was 2-10 from the 3 point line, but the game ball goes to Raymond Felton with 14 points, 12 assists, 6 rebounds, and only 2 turnovers.