The Washington Wizards, without star guard Bradley Beal, who is out for at least a week with a sprained wrist, lost to the Milwaukee Bucks, 112-98, on Tuesday night at Fiserv Forum.
While the team undoubtedly missed Beal’s production on the offensive end — he puts up 23.2 points per game — they have a better record without the all-star guard than when he plays. Including Tuesday’s loss, the Wizards are 17-23 with Beal and 6-4 without him.
Washington (23-27) had trouble scoring the ball early, going just 35% from the field and 33% from deep. On the other end, Milwaukee (32-21) started the contest 8-for-10 from the field and 4-for-5 from three. But the Wizards used a 10-2 run over the final 4:46 to get within four and erase what was once a 15-point Bucks advantage.
For the second straight quarter, Washington hobbled out of the gates, scoring a measly six points. However, in the final six minutes, the Wizards put up 14, which accounted for 70% of their scoring in the second. Still, Milwaukee took advantage of nine giveaways from the visitors to fuel a 13-point lead at the half.
After the away side won the third quarter, 33-25, and entered the fourth down five, a Rui Hachimura deep look put the Wizards up three and gave them their first lead of the night. But despite a huge fourth from Montrezl Harrell — he had 10 of his 20 in the final frame — a 17-2 Bucks run to close the game ended Washington’s comeback bid and handed the visitors their sixth straight loss.
It doesn't get much easier for the Wizards; they travel to Philadelphia before hosting Phoenix and Miami. On top of that, center Thomas Bryant left the game with an ankle sprain and did not return. Bryant had been getting his legs back under him after tearing his ACL last season.
Kyle Kuzma led all Wizards scorers with 25 points, 11 rebounds and three blocks. And while Kuzma had another productive outing, one Wizard fell short of expectations. In games playing without Beal this season, Spencer Dinwiddie has averaged 23.6 points and scored no less than 17. Tonight, the guard had seven points on 2-for-9 shooting from the field, although he contributed nine helpers.
For the Bucks, Giannis Antetokounmp had a game-high 33 points to go with 15 boards and 11 assists. It was the Greek Freak’s 17th game this season with 25-plus points. Jrue Holiday also added 22 points for the hosts.