Late in the fourth quarter of the Washington Wizards’ 106-99 victory over the Detroit Pistons, a fan behind the Wizards’ bench shouted, “Let Wall shoot. He can’t shoot it.” John Wall walked away, wiping the sweat from his nose and acting as if he didn’t hear the man. He then turned around and winked in his direction. A few minutes later, Wall would prove the fan wrong — at least on this night. With the Wizards holding on to a four-point lead in the final minute, Wall dribbled right, pumped to get a Pistons guard off his feet, then buried a pull-up jumper to secure the win. An excited Wall then beat upon his chest and hooted after his shot ensured that the Wizards are once again back at .500 for the second time this season. They will enter the new year without a losing record for the first time since 2008. Wall scored a game-high 29 points, going 14 of 15 from the foul line, and added seven assists as the Wizards rallied from a 12-point second-half deficit to defeat the Pistons for the second time in three days. Five players scored in double figures, with Trevor Ariza adding 15 points, 11 rebounds and six steals. Bradley Beal struggled in the first half, but finished with 13 points and with the Wizards clinging to a one-point lead, he coolly hit a long jumper to put them ahead, 99-96. Then, Nene hit a foul line jumper to extend the lead to five. Nene had 11 points as the Wizards snapped a four-game losing streak at the Palace of Auburn Hills. The Wizards (14-14) didn’t think they would be able to duplicate their performance from two nights before, when they used a physical, grinding style to throttle the Pistons and claim their largest margin of victory in a 106-82 home win. They fully expected that the Pistons would provide much more of a fight, especially with their physically imposing front court of former Georgetown star Greg Monroe, Andre Drummond and Josh Smith. Brandon Jennings was also smarting after John Wall lapped him and forced him into seven turnovers.
John Wall scores 29 points to lead Washington to 106-99 victory
Washington Post | Dec 31