It was the same story different night for the Washington Wizards when they face the San Antonio Spurs, as they lost, 101-92, Saturday night. This was the 17th straight loss Washington has suffered in the hands of San Antonio, 14th straight in the Spurs' building dating back to the 1999 season.
It seemed the Wizards were in great position to win heading into the game, as Tony Parker and Kawhi Leonard were both unable to play because of injury. The Spurs are the best organization that is able to win games no matter the personnel on the floor. Tonight’s hero for San Antonio was Corey Joseph, who led both teams in scoring with 19 points on 8-of-10 shooting.
Tiago Splitter scored 16 points on 7-of-8 shooting, while Patty Mills added 15 points on 6-of-8 shooting, and Boris Diaw finished with 14 points on 7-of-8 shooting. Those four players combined to shoot 82.4 percent on 28-of-34 shooting.
John Wall and Bradley Beal led the Wizards in scoring with 15 points apiece, while Marcin Gortat and Nene had 12 points apiece. It looked like Wall was going to have an unbelievable game, as he scored 11 of his 15 points in the first quarter, but the Wizards point guard did do a good job setting up his teammates with eight assists.
This was a well-played game, as both teams combined to turn the ball over only 16 times. The Spurs beat up the Wizards in the paint 52-to-32, and Washington had a huge advantage in fast break points, 20-to-2. Both teams moved the ball well as each team had at least 23 assists, but San Antonio’s defense in the second half was smothering.
The score was tied at 58 at halftime, but the Spurs held the Wizards to just 34 points in the entire second half. Both teams were shooting lights out early, and it seemed the first team to crack down on the defensive end would come away with the win, and the veteran Spurs were able to find the necessary discipline to execute. The stat line is pretty close across the board. What it boiled down to was San Antonio’s ability to knock down more shots and play exceptional defense.
This was another winnable game for Washington, and again they weren’t able to play the full 48 minutes to take complete control of the game. Just like in the Oklahoma City game, Washington had some nice leads of eight or 10 points but would quickly give it back after the opposing team took a timeout and gathered themselves. This is still a team that is learning to win at a high rate, but these are games that have to be gut wrenching.
On the Wizards' five-game road trip, they have gone 1-3 thus far, including three straight losses. They will try to end this trip on a high note, as they head to New Orleans to play the Pelicans Monday night at 8:00 pm EST. San Antonio will try to win their third straight game Tuesday night, as they stay home to face the Detroit Pistons at 8:30 pm EST.