The NBA season is still young, but things aren’t looking good with Thanksgiving coming next week. The Wizards are 3-8, 13th in the Eastern Conference. If there’s any good news from it all, maybe it’s that they are playing an “easier” stretch of games where four of their next five games will be against teams with a losing record.
Until the Wizards go on a winning streak, the vibe isn’t going to be that great. That’s how this past week went for the most part save for a few kum-bay-ya moments.
Wizards are 13th in the East after losses to the Bulls and 76ers, win vs. the Knicks
- The Wizards lost 106-95 to the Bulls last Saturday on the road without Wall or Beal there. Jimmy Butler scored 37 points for Chicago. Tomas Satoransky and Sheldon McClellan played very well though. More on them in the next section.
- When most teams play the Philadelphia 76ers, they can assume that a 60 percent effort should get them a win. When the Wizards play them, they have to play with100 percent, and they still might lose. The latter happened. They lost 109-102 to them last Wednesday. A young boy cried while his mom and dad felt hopeless. It was bad.
- And on Thursday with Bradley Beal back in action, the Wizards looked like they would get a comfortable 20 point win over the New York Knicks. But they gave up 47 points to New York in the last quarter and allowed Brandon Jennings to go into pure #WizKiller mode. The final score was a 119-112 contest where the Wizards didn’t lose. But they should have lost that one too given how bad that last quarter was.
Things are bad right now. Even when the Wizards win, it feels like a loss.
The Mystics will see if Emma Meesseman can lead Belgium to EuroBasket Women 2017
I don’t want to write about a bunch of negative stories so I’ll get to the Mystics now.
Kahleah Copper plays for Castors Braine in Braine-l’Alleud, Walloon Brabant, Belgium. She’s the leading scorer for the team so far in league play and she is winning fans over pretty quickly with the Walloon Belgian fanbase.
But the European season is in hiatus for a bit for EuroBasket Women qualifiers.
You see, Copper’s head coach Philip Mestdagh is also the head coach for Belgium’s national team. Two of Copper’s teammates, Julie Allemand and Antonio Delaere also play for the national team.
And I almost forgot. This happened too!
That’s right! Emma Meesseman stopped by in Wallonia to hang out with Copper AND get prepared for EuroBasket Women 2017 Qualifiers! Belgium plays Belarus later today in nearby Namur this afternoon. Some other games start in about an hour.
Either way you look at it, the EuroBasket Women qualifiers is a big story for the Mystics because Meesseman’s availability next season comes into question. And you also could question whether Belgium’s possible international success is detrimental for the Mystics. They are trying to make sure all of their players come better prepared next summer. On that note, here are some reasons why every, yes every player hurt the Mystics, unless you are from Ieper, West Flanders.
I’m not sure how Copper is fitting into Walloon culture with Flemish coaches and teammates. But in short, I’m glad to see that she’s playing well for Castors Braine.
Wizards player analysis and notes
Alright, time to get back to the Wizards, where I’m not so glad about things.
- In our last version of Keys to the Palace, John Wall was locked out due to getting ejected two games in a row last week. Meanwhile, Satoransky, McClellan, and Otto Porter got keys.
- Satoransky certainly deserved a key, but Alan also wrote that he can still improve as a scorer.
- As for McClellan, Mike Knapp wrote that he should get a bigger role on the team in light of last Saturday’s performance against the Bulls.
- Andrew Nicholson looked promising last season, but his playing time now looks very erratic.
- After the infamous 76ers game with the crying boy, his father showed the world that the kid as alright. Marcin Gortat even apologized to him! No, BF member Dan the Bullets Fan wasn’t the father of the boy. But he did have some game notes from Philly as well from his seat just three rows behind the Wizards bench.
- Tomas Satoransky is known as a dunker, but we didn’t get to see him go for it until Thursday.
- And some players aren’t going to get playing time for a long while. Danuel House is one of those players. The Wizards sent him to the D-League earlier this week where he will play for the Delaware 87ers. Scott Brooks called this an “opportunity” according to Candace Buckner of The Washington Post.
- Beal is back on the court from his hamstring injury, but Buckner also added that he may still not be 100 percent yet.
- Ben Golliver of Sports Illustrated call Wall one of NBA’s four “stranded stars” along with DeMarcus Cousins of the Kings, Paul George of the Pacers, and Anthony Davis of the Pelicans. He did touch on a possible reunion between Wall and Cousins, but implied that it could be in Sacramento more so than Washington.
Wizards team analysis and notes
- Let’s start with the biggest news within Monumental Sports. Ted Leonsis will own two Arena Football League teams next year. We know he’ll own the Valor, but he’s also going to own a team in Baltimore.
- In our latest podcast, we talked about the Wizards’ bench issues and if things can turn around.
- Zach Lowe of ESPN chatted with David Thorpe on a podcast about how bad the Wizards’ bench signings were. They do have faith in Scott Brooks though. Here’s a transcript of the podcast from Truth About It.
- One more thing about the bench: Marcin told it like it is after the Bulls game. Soon after, Scott Brooks made him apologize before Monday’s practice.
- Sean Fagan of Truth About It elaborated more on the boy who cried during the Philadelphia 76ers game, and tied that into an analysis on the coaching right now.
- Blaise Malley of Wiz of Awes wrote about two major flaws that are keeping the Wizards from being the team they could be.
- For what it’s worth, the entertainment biz can’t help but take a shot at the Wizards, specifically Otto Porter. The Chief of Staff on the show Designated Survivor blamed Porter for being late on a play. I’ll take it as a compliment though, because the show used current-era players. They were relevant on television!
- Let’s finish the week on a better note. Gortat hosted a basketball camp in Washington D.C. in collaboration with the Embassy of Poland. Satoransky and Porter were also there to help out. You can watch a video of the camp highlights below:
So those are just some of the many links we have for you over the past week. Have another link you’d like to share? Feel free to do so in a comment or FanPost!