clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Wizards fall to third in Eastern Conference standings after loss to Suns

New, comments

Today's Wake-Up Call takes a look at how the Wizards stack up in the conference, and how the rotation might be adjusting after strong games from Otto Porter and Garrett Temple.

Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

1. Wizards fall behind Toronto in East standings

Wednesday's loss cost the Wizards a chance at walking away from a West Coast trip with a winning record, but it also cost them in the standings. Their loss, paired with Toronto's win over the Kings, put the Wizards half a game behind the Raptors for the second spot. The Wizards still have a full game lead over Chicago for the third spot.

Don't look now, but that gap between the top four teams in the East and everyone else has quickly disappearing. Cleveland won their eighth straight last night, beating the Blazers, despite not having LeBron James. Kyrie Irving, one of the Cavaliers' key role players, stepped up and had a big night in LeBron's absence.

At the same time, the gap between the Hawks and everyone is getting so big that Twitter can't even process it.

2. Washington can't capitalize on late runs, fall 106-98

Wednesday's game was shaping up to be a blowout, but thanks to a 17-3 run from the Wizards' reserves, and a 8-0 run sparked by Otto Porter Jr., the Wizards gave those who stayed up late something worth watching.

To the recaps!

Bullets Forever

Truth About It

Washington Post

CSN Washington

3. Otto Porter and Garrett Temple could be in line for more playing time

Andre Miller and Rasual Butler have both been struggling as of late and it finally came to head last night. Both played less than five minutes in Wednesday's loss. For Butler, it was the first time he's played under 10 minutes since November 25th. For Andre Miller, it was the least playing time he's received in a regular season game since he was acquired by the Wizards last season.

Garrett Temple took advantage of a rare opportunitiy to play some minutes at point guard and responded with a solid performance. He was the only Wizard to finish with a positive plus/minus on the night. According to J. Michael of CSN Washington, this might not be a one-time occurrence.

Garrett Temple could be getting more time over Andre Miller, particularly if it's a defensive matchup that's key. Temple played seven minutes in Phoenix, which doesn't seem like much, but he shot 3-for-5 and it was his most time since Dec. 19. Miller only logged five minutes. Temple is now 6-for-8 in the last four games in which he has appeared. That's a small sample size but Temple is on the uptick.

And let's not forget Otto Porter. After going through some turbulence as he adjusted to Martell Webster's return, he's starting to get back into a rhythm, as he's shown in the past two games against the Lakers and Suns. If he can keep this up, soon it's going to be Butler and Webster fighting it out for that reserve minutes alongside Porter.

4. John Wall playing through migraines

After all the confusion over what injury John Wall was dealing with on Tuesday, Jorge Castillo followed up with Wall on how his migraines have been making things difficult for him in recent weeks. It's important to remember these things when people call Wall soft or accuse him of not being a team player.

5. Focus on the game, Kris