As Wizards' fans watched Denver Nuggets' forward Kenneth Faried head to the line with a little over a second remaining in regulation of Sunday night's game, they thought it was going to be a classic case of the Washington team of old that was constantly on the search of finding new ways to lose.
But Faried missed both shots from the charity stripe and the Wizards suddenly had new life. They were granted overtime to earn a win over the Nuggets.
Wizards' head coach Randy Wittman didn't take the stress of overtime too well.
Despite Wittman doing Wittman things on the sidelines, the Wizards fought and won their first game of a four-game road trip with a 117-115 victory over the Nuggets. In overtime, John Wall and Kris Humphries combined for 10 points while Nene added another bucket to help seal the win.
The win for the Wizards (30-15) snapped a two-game skid and might give them some added momentum heading into Tuesday night's match-up with former Wizard Nick Young and the Los Angeles Lakers at the Staples Center.
Sunday night at the Pepsi Center, Nene - who spent 10 years in Denver as a Nugget - made himself at home in the paint by scoring 14 points and grabbing five rebounds, but once again it was Wall who led the Wizards to a win with 19 points, 16 assists and three rebounds.
Humphries was awesome too, and here's what else we learned:
KS and KH did work off the bench
Kevin Seraphin and Humphries have been valuable to the Wizards this season in providing relief when one of the starting bigs - Nene and Gortat - are either struggling or just tired. Tonight, that continued as the duo combined for 31 points, 17 rebounds and two assists. Seraphin gave the Wizards their first lead of the second half by scoring back to back buckets in the opening moments of the fourth quarter and Humphries kept the Wizards in the game down the stretch with his scoring, defending and rebounding.
Humphries alone finished with a double-double (21 points and 14 rebounds) and started over Gortat in overtime. As Ben Standig noted, he typically performs well vs the Nuggets.
Kris Humphries loves playing the Nuggets. Last four games vs. Denver: 14, 18, 20 and 11 points in 1H tonight.— Ben Standig (@BenStandig) January 26, 2015
Bradley Beal could have played better.
The Wizards young starting two-guard finished with 14 points, but he passed up on opportunities to drive to the rim if just a little bit of contact presented itself and also hesitated to the pull the trigger on some shots from distance as well. As he attempted just two shots from the behind the arc all night, Beal was only B3AL once.
Beal doesn't need to be the team's alpha dog type scorer every night, but he should assert himself a bit more when opportunities present themselves like they did tonight. Beal hasn't scored 20 points in a game since Jan. 2 in a loss to the Oklahoma City Thunder.
However, Beal may have had the play of the night by getting in front of Faried on the final play of regulation. Beal was called for blocking and the foul disqualified him from the remainder of the game, but it also voided a tip-in from the Nuggets following Faried's missed lay-up that would have won the game for Denver.
Wall and Beal can learn from The Truth:
Well put from our own Akbar Naqvi --
Pierce has 14x as many FT attempts as Wall and Beal combined tonight— Akbar Naqvi (@AkbarRazaNaqvi) January 26, 2015
Wall eventually got to the line in overtime, going two-for-two, but he and Beal both need to get shots from the charity stripe more often.
But, even though Wall didn't draw fouls, he still did cool stuff like this to help the Wizard win. That's all that really matters.