“We fought for 3 and 1/2 quarters and to lose two games like this, I really feel like we just gave them away,” Wizards forward Roger Mason said.
For the second game in a row the Wizards blow a double-digit second half lead, this time it was to the Atlanta Hawks falling 95-92. The Wizards, who were ahead as much as sixteen in the game and ten in the fourth quarter, were held scoreless the final 2:48 of the loss.
“We just, again, had problems scoring in that fourth quarter and they made big shots,” Wizards Head Coach Randy Wittman said. “I mean they got all-stars that hit some big shots down the stretch for them. Tough one to lose.”
GAME PHOTOS: Wizards vs. Hawks
Two Wizards that started off hot were Nene and Jordan Crawford. They combined for three points in the fourth quarter, all from Nene. Crawford had a team high 21 points overall on 9 of 19 shooting and Nene had a double double with 20 points and 11 boards, but only took one shot in the fourth.
“We misses shots,” Wittman said on the fourth quarter struggles. “We didn’t get the ball inside. The ball’s got to get inside more.”
Wizards point guard John Wall had a night he would like to forget, going 1 for 10 from the field for eight points.
“They gave me my shots, I just missed them” Wall said. “It was kind of frustrating, but my team did a great job of carrying us. We just came up [short] and I felt short of a leader to close out the game for us.”
Wall missed a possible game tying three at the end of regulation.
The Hawks were led by Josh Smith with 20 and Joe Johnson with 16. Johnson made a long three late in the fourth to give the Hawks their first lead of the second half with 46.8 left in the game.
The good part is the Wizards (11-36) don’t have a long time to think about this one as they start their back-to-back-to-back stretch. They head to Boston tonight to play the Celtics tomorrow before they come home to host the Detroit Pistons on Monday.
“We pocket the good and the bad and learn from it,” Wittman said. “As we move forward the next year and the next year after, when these kids get older and older, this is going to be stuff that they draw back on and then they’re going to be in that position kicking somebody else’s butt.”
Listen here to what Randy Wittman, John Wall, Nene and Roger Mason had to say following the loss.
Randy Wittman Postgame Audio
John Wall Postgame Audio
Nene Postgame Audio
Roger Mason Postgame Audio