The one that got away: Beal’s 46 not enough as Wizards blow the game late
Boston- Bradley Beal scored a game high 46 points against Boston. However, a late mistake proved too costly for the Wizards as they left the court one-point losers. Washington came into Boston winning 7 of their last ten. Boston however was suffering a major skid losing 7 of their last 10. Washington was looking to start a new streak coming off their big win over Minnesota the night prior.
Washington started off the game extremely slow and had 0 field goals for the first 6 minutes of the game. It wasn’t until a Davis Bertans three that ended the drought for Washington. Washington however was getting to the free-throw line like crazy. Washington shot 17 free-throws in the first half alone. The Wizards were hanging in tough with Boston purely by drawing fouls.
Boston started off somewhat slow but began to grow a lead as the first half continued. Boston held an 11 point lead at one point, but the Wizards quickly cut into the lead. Washington used a 7-0 run to help bring them within five as the first half came to a close.
Beal and Bertans were carrying the workload for most the half. Bertans started off the game 4 for 4 from downtown. Beal also had 24 points at this point. In his last 4 games versus the Celtics, Beal has scored 30 or more points every time.
The Wizards came into the second half with a new plan and were executing it well. Washington began to push the tempo as they forced multiple turnovers turning into quick scores. Boston still was holding on to the slight lead they had thanks to a nice night from Jason Tatum. Tatum finished with 31 on the evening. Kemba Walker also had a solid quarter hitting 2/4 three-pointers. Washington finished the third only down by three.
The Wizards continued their solid play into the fourth and took their first lead of the night with 10 minutes to go. Bertans knocked down a corner trifecta to cap off an 11-0 run for Washington. Boston came right back and knocked down a quick three and a layup to make it a one-point game just like that.
As the game got into the final runs, Beal began to take over the game. After converting an and-one three-pointer, Beal came right back down and drained another triple the very next possession. Boston called a timeout as the Beal three stole the lead from the Celtics. Beal had been scoring all night for Washington but was coming up huge in the clutch. Beal’s reign of terror didn’t stop there: Beal drove and scored the field goal plus the foul on the very next possession. Beal now had 44 and propelled the Wizards to a 103-96 lead with 3:38 to go.
Boston once again quickly came right back and suddenly turned it into a one-point game with 1:34 to go. The Wizards had some defensive gaffs that ultimately severely hurt them in the end tonight. With 46.9 to go, Beal solidified the lead for The Wizards with a clutch drive and score. The Wizards now led by five.
This is where things began to go down for Washington. Boston made a shot and was followed up by a defensive stop when Westbrooks’ three bounced out. Tatum then made a layup to cut the lead to one. On the following inbound, Beal lost his footing when Boston was trying to foul him. Beal stepped on the line and out of bounds. This gave the ball back to Boston with 12.9 left. Boston took advantage when Tatum drove and scored with 4.7 seconds to go. Washington gave the ball to the hot hand Beal for the final shot, but Beal just missed at the buzzer as he was double teamed in the corner. Washington had fallen 111-110. Certainly a painful loss for this Wizards team.
Although Beal finished with 46, his late mistake ultimately lead to a heart-breaking loss for the Wizards. Washington falls to 13-19 in a game that they let slip away in the end. Washington will look to bounce back against the Grizzlies on March 2nd.