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Recap: Wizards stomp Grizzlies, 115-87

Memphis Grizzlies v Washington Wizards
Wizards guard/forward Kentavious Caldwell-Pope.
Photo by Stephen Gosling/NBAE via Getty Images

Now that’s how to snap a losing streak. After 5-1 start and a couple stumbles in a row, the Wizards came out and dominated the visiting Memphis Grizzlies, taking control midway through the second quarter, and cruising to a 115-87 win.

For the Wizards, the victory came from stellar play in virtually every facet of the game. Their effective field goal percentage was a lofty .643, and they throttled the Memphis offense throughout.

During their two-game skid, Washington’s defensive contested shots numbered in the 20s. Tonight, they challenged 59 Grizzlies attempts, and it resulted in their best defensive performance of the season. Memphis managed an efg of just 38.5%.

The only significant mar on the Wizards performance was turnovers, and those seemed mostly a function of an emphasis on passing and sharing the ball.

Quick Thoughts:

  • Every Washington player who took the floor rated above average in my PPA metric, except Deni Avdija. While the numbers weren’t good (2-6 from the floor, no threes, 2 turnovers and 2 fouls in 28 minutes), his defense was excellent, and he played with a pace and assertiveness that were good to see.
  • It was great to see Bradley Beal apparently more focused on finding open teammates than hunting his own shot. Next step: cutting the turnovers (5 in 27 minutes tonight).
  • Even in a bad game, I was impressed by Grizzlies guard Ja Morant. He had a rough time shaking loose against determined Wizards defenders and couldn’t find the basket — just 4-17 from the floor. Still, the way he thinks the game is outstanding, and he’s already a master of change-of-pace moves that will only get better as he gains experience.

Four Factors

Below are the four factors that decide who wins and loses in basketball — shooting (efg), rebounding (offensive rebounds), ball handling (turnovers), fouling (free throws made).

I’ve simplified them a bit. While the factors are usually presented as percentages, that’s more useful over a full season. In a single game, the raw numbers in each category are easier to understand.

PACE is possessions per 48 minutes.

Four Factors: Grizzlies 87 at Wizards 115

FOUR FACTORS GRIZZLIES WIZARDS
FOUR FACTORS GRIZZLIES WIZARDS
EFG 0.385 0.643
OREB 12 5
TOV 9 18
FTM 13 7
PACE 100
ORTG 87 115

Key Stats

Below are a few performance metrics, including the Player Production Average (PPA) Game Score (very similar to the one I used to call Scoreboard Impact Rating). PPA is my overall production metric, which credits players for things they do that help a team win (scoring, rebounding, playmaking, defending) and dings them for things that hurt (missed shots, turnovers, bad defense, fouls).

Game Score (GmSC) converts individual production into points on the scoreboard in this game. The scale is the same as points and reflects each player’s total contributions for the game. The lowest possible GmSC is zero.

PPA is a per possession metric designed for larger data sets. In small sample sizes, the numbers can get weird. But, some readers prefer it so I’m including PPA scores as well. Reminder: in PPA, 100 is average, higher is better and replacement level is 45. For a single game, replacement level isn’t much use, and I reiterate the caution about small samples producing weird results.

Now numbers.

POSS is the number of possessions each player was on the floor in this game.

PTS = points scored

ORTG = offensive rating, which is points produced per individual possessions x 100. League average last season was 112.3.

USG = offensive usage rate. Average is 20%.

ORTG and USG are slightly modified versions of stats created by Wizards assistant coach Dean Oliver and modified slightly by me. ORTG is an efficiency measure that accounts for the value of shooting, offensive rebounds, assists and turnovers. USG includes shooting from the floor and free throw line, offensive rebounds, assists and turnovers.

Wizards: Key Stats

WIZARDS MIN POSS PTS ORTG USG PPA GmSC +/-
WIZARDS MIN POSS PTS ORTG USG PPA GmSC +/-
Kentavious Caldwell-Pope 26 54 12 136 16.0% 306 21.7 23
Raul Neto 26 54 15 149 16.7% 249 17.5 17
Daniel Gafford 23 49 15 131 23.5% 211 13.5 13
Kyle Kuzma 25 52 13 126 18.2% 195 13.3 17
Spencer Dinwiddie 22 46 12 111 26.6% 218 13.2 11
Montrezl Harrell 25 51 18 121 22.2% 187 12.6 15
Aaron Holiday 21 43 6 108 15.2% 161 9.1 12
Bradley Beal 27 57 17 104 30.8% 120 8.9 16
Corey Kispert 17 35 2 112 8.9% 110 5.0 6
Deni Avdija 28 59 5 70 16.1% -32 0.0 10

Grizzlies: Key Stats

GRIZZLIES MIN POSS PTS ORTG USG PPA GmSC +/-
GRIZZLIES MIN POSS PTS ORTG USG PPA GmSC +/-
Tyus Jones 17 36 7 126 16.2% 218 18.0 -9
Jarrett Culver 10 21 6 173 19.0% 317 15.2 -2
Jon Konchar 7 14 4 140 18.5% 367 11.6 -7
Jaren Jackson Jr. 25 51 13 82 32.8% 80 9.5 -20
Xavier Tillman 13 26 6 131 16.4% 141 8.6 -4
Steven Adams 20 41 5 117 14.7% 84 7.9 -20
Ziaire Williams 19 39 9 102 16.9% 82 7.4 -13
Desmond Bane 22 45 10 118 14.4% 62 6.5 -14
Sam Merrill 10 21 4 113 13.8% 51 2.4 -2
Killian Tillie 10 21 0 0 11.0% -57 0.0 -2
De'Anthony Melton 20 42 4 57 17.4% -34 0.0 -19
Brandon Clarke 10 21 6 70 30.5% -74 0.0 -2
Santi Aldama 10 21 2 49 14.6% -93 0.0 -2
Kyle Anderson 19 40 0 40 15.4% -60 0.0 -8
Ja Morant 29 61 11 73 28.2% -42 0.0 -16