The Washington Wizards won on Tuesday night against the Minnesota Timberwolves, 132-114 at Target Center in Minneapolis.
Daniel Gafford leads the NBA in field goal percentage - close to 70 percent. Tonight he was 10 from 11 from the field, mostly uncontested-spoon-fed dunks from Ish Smith, as KAT and the Timberwolves struggled to contain the most straightforward pick-and-roll sets the Wizards threw at them.
Perhaps the Wolves would like to avoid a playoff match-up with the Warriors/Mavericks and prefer to stick to the no. 7 seed, at any rate it sure did look like they conceded this contest without much of a fight.
The Wizards essentially played a tight 8-man rotation, with their 3 bench players scoring 50 points compared to 31 of the Wolves’ bench: Avdija with 17, Gafford with 24 (!), and Ish Smith with 11 (and nearly had a triple-double, with 14 assists and 8 rebounds).
Avdija looked extremely confided on defense, challenging KAT multiple times, and frustrating him. During a sequence halfway through the fourth quarter Avdija led KAT to help-side defense from Gafford resulting in a blocked lay-up only to see KAT try to then trip him as he took the rebound (KAT was called for a foul). Hachimura, on the other hand, seemed a bit lost on defense. In a sequence slightly before that one, he bit hard on a KAT fake at the top of the key to then watch KAT dribble twice and easily dunk.
Porzingis had a very good game scoring 25 in 27 minutes and mostly rested during the fourth quarter garbage time.
The first half was a scoring spree with little defense on both sides and ended on an even note, 67—66 for the Wizards. However, the Wizards made a push in the third quarter to open a double-digit lead but the Wolves came back all the way to 97—93. The fourth quarter saw the Wolves energy-less on both sides of the floor and the Wizards went on a 25-6 run to open a 23 point lead, 122—99, when garbage time became official.
The Wizards have only had garbage-time games these past three contests, either wiping out the Mavericks and Timberwolves, or else being completely destroyed by the Celtics. According to this, you would expect them to be blown-out tomorrow night on the rough end of a back-to-back as they face the Hawks in Atlanta. Let’s see. At any rate, at this point the lottery odds of the Wizards are borderline hopeless.