The Wizards opened the second half of the season in much the way they did the first — by getting whomped on the road by a better team. In the season opener, it was a 14-point loss to the Philadelphia 76ers. Last night, a 15-point loss to the Memphis Grizzlies.
In a fast-paced game (108 possessions per team), the Wizards couldn’t shoot straight (.458 effective field goal percentage) and couldn’t contain the Grizzlies’ front court. Memphis center Jonas Valanciunas bludgeoned Washington with 29 points, 20 rebounds and 4 blocks.
The Wizards’ center tandem — Moritz Wagner, Robin Lopez, and Alex Len (you can find them at the bottom of the PPA table below) combined for 13 points (on 4-15 shooting), 11 rebounds, 4 turnovers, and 9 fouls. Valanciunas had a PPA 274. The Wizards centers combined for a -40.
It wasn’t just the centers. Aside from Deni Avdija’s excellent game (13 point on 8 field goal attempts, 3-5 shooting from three-point range, and 6 rebounds in 24 minutes), the Wizards got little helpful production from the forwards. Meanwhile, Brandon Clarke grabbed 10 rebounds in 24 minutes, Desmond Bane scored 20 points on 13 shots, and Kyle Anderson got some “get right” moments against the porous Wizards defense.
For the Wizards, Russell Westbrook was solid — 20 points on 19 shots, 5 rebounds, 10 assists and 3 steals, as well as 4 turnovers.
Bradley Beal had a tough outing against a well-designed defense and the Grizzlies’ big, physical wing defenders. Garrison Mathews did what he does — hit threes and get fouled attempting a three.
Scott Brooks added Troy Brown Jr. to the rotation, and while Brown didn’t shoot well, he had a good all-around game with 3 assists and some defensive plays in 13 minutes.
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: Wizards at Grizzlies
Player Production Average
Below are Player Production Average (PPA) results from last night’s game. PPA is my overall production metric, which credits players for things they do that help a team win (scoring, rebounding, play-making, defending) and dings them for things that hurt (missed shots, turnovers, bad defense, fouls). PPA is a per possession stat that includes accounting for defense and role. In PPA, 100 is average and higher is better.
PPA is a per possession stat. The table below is sorted by each player’s total contributions for the game.
POSS is the number of possessions each player was on the floor in this game.
|Troy Brown Jr.||13||30||176||3|