Wizards Capture First Win Of John Wall Era With 116-115 Victory Over Sixers In Overtime

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Wizards And 76ers Battle In Overtime, Wizards Get The Win, 116-115

Philly's bench outscored the Wizards 20-14 in the first five minutes of the final quarter. As a team, the Sixers were incredibly efficient. It's not that the Wizards were shooting poorly, it's just that Philadelphia was shooting exceedingly well.

To keep with the overall theme of the evening, Washington had seven baskets, offset by seven turnovers with just over two minutes left to play. Both teams were able to capitalize on the others' mistakes, making those turnovers even more costly.

Both teams were winless coming into the game tonight. It looked like the Sixers would come away with the win until Cartier Martin hit an awkward three-point shot with no time left on the clock. Overtime? Sure, the game wasn't quite long enough.

In overtime, both teams were trading baskets. Wall hit a big one, then Brand hit a big one. It seemed to go on for hours. Andray Blatche hit both free throws with 7.1 seconds left, putting the Wizards at 36-43 from the line for the night (the final 15 were made consecutively). As it turned out, those last free throws would be the game-winning shots. Time expired and the Wizards picked up their first win of the season.

John Wall had an impressive showing for his first home game. He had nine of the WIzards' 15 steals and 13 of their 24 assists. Wall finished with 29 points in 45 minutes, but also had eight turnovers. Off the bench, Nick Young had 20 points and went 3-3 from beyond the arc. Andray Blatch had a confusing array of airballs and quality shots, finishing with 19 points and seven rebounds.

For Philadelphia, Louis Williams led with 30 points, coming off the bench to play 32 minutes. He had 18 points in the fourth quarter alone. Elton Brand hit some big open shots and ended the game with 21 points and nine rebounds. Evan Turner, the #2 pick in the draft behind Wall, didn't have as big a night as his Wizards counterpart. He had 9 points and six rebounds.


Wizards Pull Ahead Of Sixers On The Wings of Wall

John Wall exploded in the third quarter, bringing his totals to six points, nine assists and seven steals. In fact, Wall has gotten at least nine assists in his first three games, not an easy feat. As a team, Washington made it to the line significantly more in the third, and did so by making some power moves to the basket. 

Philadelphia hung around, trailing by nine several times, but bringing it back to within six points to finish the quarter. Just about every Sixer has seen some playing time, with the exception of Songaila. Louis Williams gave the bench a boost with 10 points in 16 minutes. Turnovers continued to plague Philly, as was made evident by Wall's ridiculous steals total.


Turnovers A Factor As Game Stays Close, Wizards Lead 76ers At Half, 50-48

Whereas turnovers plagued the Wizards in the first quarter, the butterfingers passed over to the 76ers in the second quarter, allowing Washington to hang around despite shooting only 41.7 percent. Philadelphia picked up seven turnovers in the second quarter alone.

Nick Young has continued to spur the Wizards offense, with two threes and 6 of 8 from the field for 15 points. Washington is also slamming the offensive boards, out-rebounding the Sixers six to four. The Sixers, however, are playing solid team basketball with 15 assists on 17 shots.

In a big surprise, JaVale McGee, who went to town against the Atlanta Hawks, has been virtually absent. He picked up two quick fouls and only contributed two rebounds for the team in just four minutes of play. Philly's big man, Spencer Hawes, hasn't put up numbers either, so the game has pretty much been up to the shooters.

The Wizards, after being down big in the first quarter, lead the 76ers by two at the end of the half, 50-48


76ers Vs. Wizards: The Top Two Picks Of The Draft Meet In Wizard's Home Opener

(Sports Network) - The first two picks of this past summer's NBA Draft will go head-to-head tonight in DC, where No. 1 overall selection John Wall and the Washington Wizards play host to Evan Turner and the Philadelphia 76ers.

After polishing his skills at Kentucky, Wall went to the Wizards with the top pick in the draft and made his debut in last Thursday's loss at Orlando, scoring 14 points and handing out nine assists. Wall, who is nursing a balky right ankle, recorded 28 points and another nine assists in Saturday's 99-95 road setback to Atlanta.

The speedy Wall is expected to play tonight for the 0-2 Wizards.

Turner, meanwhile, went second in the draft to Philadelphia and hasn't started a game for the winless 76ers (0-3). He netted 16 points in his debut last Wednesday versus Miami, but was held scoreless in less than 19 minutes of action in Friday's loss to Atlanta. Turner is averaging 27.7 minutes per game, while Wall is posting 38.5 minutes.

The former Ohio State standout had nine points and seven rebounds in Saturday's 99-86 loss at Indiana, Philadelphia's first road contest of the season. Turner and the 76ers are trying to avoid the worst start in team history since the 2001-02 squad kicked off the year 0-5. Lou Williams had 18 points, while Elton Brand, Jrue Holiday and Andre Iguodala each scored 12 points for the Sixers.

"It's the same old movie, bad stretches and it's not our defense, it's our offense," said Philadelphia head coach Doug Collins. "It's one thing about playing with passion and it's one thing about playing with emotion. Not one guy in that locker room has a winning record in the NBA. They asked me to turn things around and it's going to take time."

Washington will celebrate its home opener Tuesday and is off to the worst start since losing the first five games of the 2008-09 season.

Wall's 28 points and Al Thornton's 24 points weren't enough to lift the Wizards, who got 18 points from Andray Blatche. Washington did shoot 50 percent from the field in defeat.

"We shot 50 percent and held them to low 40's and that's pretty good," said Wizards head coach Flip Saunders. "They're one of the top teams in the league. We just have to clean some things up and we'll be right there."

Wizards guard Gilbert Arenas is still out because of a right ankle sprain and was suspended 50 games last season for a felony gun conviction.

Washington took all three meetings with Philadelphia last season after losing four matchups in 2008-09. The Sixers have lost two in a row and nine of 12 visits to the nation's capital.

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