That was an ugly way to clinch, Wizards, but we'll take it, right guys?
Washington took care of business in its first chance to advance to the second round, defeating the Bulls in Chicago, 75-69, with the Big Three leading the way. John Wall scored a game-high 24 points (7-of-19 shooting, 9-of-11 FTs) to go with seven rebounds and four assists. Back from his one-game suspension, Nene resumed his domination, scoring 20 points on 10-of-17 shooting, and grabbing seven boards. Bradley Beal chipped in 17 points, five rebounds and four assists.
Marcin Gortat only scored two points on 1-of-5 shooting, but he hauled in a team-high 13 rebounds, including three-straight offensive boards within a one-minute span at the end of the game to help seal the series for the Wizards. After leading the team with 30 points in Game 4, Trevor Ariza had a more subdued Game 5 with only six points, but he tallied nine rebounds and continued his suffocating defense. Trevor Booker remained huge off the bench, scoring six points to go with seven rebounds and boundless energy that had Steve Kerr declaring CookBook his "new favorite player" in the NBA.
The game was as scrappy as one would expect from an elimination game, and on a night when they shot only 40.5 percent as a team, the Wizards relied on their defense holding the Bulls to 33 percent shooting. Washington also won all the hustle stats (see below).
Road team recaps: BF StoryStream | SB Nation | Washington Post (gamer, sidebar, Wise column, Noah on Wiz) | DC Sports Bog (best-worst, celebration GIFs, ultimate troll, ratings spike, Pacers-Hawks?, Ted 'not satisfied') | AP | CSN Washington (recap, sidebar, keys to series win, Pacers-Hawks?, Wiz becoming destination?) | Truth About It | Wiz of Awes (recap, column) | DC Pro Sports Report | Hoop District (recap, live from Chicago) | District Sports Page | DC Sports Box | ESPN | SI | Ball Don't Lie | NBA.com | CBS Sports | USA Today | Bleacher Report | Hoops Habit | Ted's Take | Wizards.com | Monumental Network | Quibbles Forever
Home team recaps: Blog A Bull StoryStream | Chicago Tribune (gamer, sidebar) | Chicago Sun-Times (gamer, sidebar, column) | ESPN Chicago (recap, sidebar) | CSN Chicago (recap, sidebar, Gibson injury, Noah injuy, series stats, Bulls' future, Wiz on the rise) | Times of Northwest Indiana | Chicagoist | Pippen Ain't Easy (recap, sidebar, lessons learned) | Bulls.com
6 - Offensive rebounds collected by the Wizards in the final two minutes of the game, including three straight by Gortat that gave Washington a minute-long possession beginning at the 1:58 mark. Coincidentally, the Wizards also outrebounded the Bulls by six (49-to-43) for the game.
11 - Washington's advantage in fast break points (13-to-2) against Chicago.
8 - Washington's advantage in paint scoring (26-to-18) against the Bulls.
TWEETS OF THE NIGHT
"Trevor Booker, it’s official, is my new favorite player in the entire league." -Steve Kerr— Bullets Forever (@BulletsForever) April 30, 2014
HIP HIP NENE! HIP HIP NENE! HIP HIP NENE! HIP HIP NENE! HIP HIP NENE! HIP HIP NENE! HIP HIP NENE! HIP HIP NENE! HIP HIP NENE! HIP HIP NENE!— Grant Paulsen (@granthpaulsen) April 30, 2014
Second round's on we!!!! MOISTURE ABOUNDS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!— WzzzzzzzNtzzzzzzzzzz (@wzzntzz) April 30, 2014
John Wall 4, Colin Cowherd 1. Onto the next one.— Richard Deitsch (@richarddeitsch) April 30, 2014
In fairness … pic.twitter.com/cqkISYJUXl— Bullets Forever (@BulletsForever) April 30, 2014
Congrats to the @WashWizards Much love to all my boys out there ballin— Robert Griffin III (@RGIII) April 30, 2014
Congrats !!!! On to the next round #dcRising— Etan Thomas (@etanthomas36) April 30, 2014
Wizards bandwagon currently accepting applications. Holla.— Abe Schwadron (@abe_squad) April 30, 2014
I charted Wizards box scores on notebook paper in my room as a kid. So much Courtney Alexander and Jahidi White. Tonight is a great night.— Grant Paulsen (@granthpaulsen) April 30, 2014
Love those Wizards— Joe Theismann (@Theismann7) April 30, 2014
Special congratulations to Andre Miller. 15 seasons and he’s finally in the second round.— Bullets Forever (@BulletsForever) April 30, 2014
Man, complete strangers were HUGGING each other at the #WizardsTwitter watch party. This city has missed winning basketball.— Amin Vafa (@AminNBA) April 30, 2014
Few playoff joys grander than the screencap of an ESPN predictions page showing you how poor of a prognosticator you are. Congrats, Wiz!— Marc Stein (@ESPNSteinLine) April 30, 2014
Wizkidz— Wale Folarin (@Wale) April 30, 2014
Love this photo (Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images) pic.twitter.com/rRridemBg5— Mike Prada (@MikePradaSBN) April 30, 2014
.@kanyewest You shoulda never, ever made catchy raps dissin' the Wizards.— Bullets Forever (@BulletsForever) April 30, 2014
Round Deuce. #RespectWitt— Kyle Weidie (@Truth_About_It) April 30, 2014
#whynotus !!— Bradley Beal (@RealDealBeal23) April 30, 2014
Hard work pays off. Still hungry!!! Keep supporting— Trevor Booker (@35_Fitz) April 30, 2014
DC get ready for second round!!— Marcin Gortat (@MGortat) April 30, 2014
well advance then ....— trevorariza (@TrevorAriza) April 30, 2014
VIDEO/GIF OF THE NIGHT
Doesn't get any better than this.