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The Wizards’ success in the fourth quarter is not a fluke

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New York Knicks v Washington Wizards Photo by Naomi Baker/Getty Images

Daily Digits is a new daily feature we’re doing at Bullets Forever this year where we look at stats about the Wizards. We’ll dive into the numbers, add context, and discuss how they affect the product on the court.

Today’s stat is Washington’s net rating in the fourth quarter this season, which is...

+9.9

We’re over halfway through the season, and the Wizards are the best fourth quarter team in the league. Thursday’s big comeback win over the Knicks helped them edge ahead of the Boston Celtics for the best net rating. They have the best offense, averaging 117.2 points per 100 possessions, and they have the tenth-best defense, holding opponents to 107.2 points per 100 possessions.

Washington has made some impressive runs in blowout losses that have helped those numbers. They’re one of only three teams (along with the Celtics and Bucks) that have outscored opponents in the fourth quarter of games they’ve lost.

However, the Wizards aren’t just cashing in on garbage time minutes. The Wizards have absolutely crushed teams in the fourth quarter when they win. They have a +19.6 net rating in the fourth quarter of wins this season. That’s a full two points better than any other team in the league this season.

The Wizards spent most of last season watching other teams erase their lead in the final minutes. Now, they’re returning the favor, although it would be a lot nicer if they could just get a lead and hold it.