After suffering for almost a month without a win, the Washington
Wizards have enjoyed some success lately. Based on their most
recent visit to Atlanta, they now might have a good chance to end
another pair of droughts.
The Wizards look for the first victory away from home and try to
avoid a 10th straight road defeat to the Hawks on Friday night.
Washington (2-13) opened with a franchise-record 12 consecutive
losses but has since won two of three – both at home.
The most recent victory was particularly surprising, beating
Miami 105-101 on Tuesday to end the defending champion’s six-game
win streak. Jordan Crawford scored 22 points and Kevin Seraphin
added 16 with 10 rebounds for the Wizards, who matched a season
high by shooting 48.1 percent and never trailed in the final three
“It’s a big momentum win for us, obviously,” point guard Shaun
Livingston said. “We’ve been struggling to put together four
Though the Wizards still own the NBA’s worst record, average a
league-low 90.4 points and are not sure when injured star John Wall
(knee) will make his season debut, their recent progress has been a
long time coming as far as the team is concerned.
“It basically just shows how good of a team we are, how good we
can be. That’s the main thing,” said Crawford, averaging 19.3
points in four games since being moved back into a reserve
The next step for Washington is to find success on the road,
where at 0-7 it joins Sacramento as the NBA’s only winless teams
away from home. However, four of those losses have been by six
points or fewer and two went to overtime, including a 101-100
defeat in Atlanta on Nov. 21.
The Hawks took the lead with 1.9 seconds left in overtime on
Kyle Korver’s long 3-pointer, but the Wizards thought they earned
their first win when Martell Webster made a layup as the buzzer
sounded. One official initially ruled the basket was good, but the
crew conferred and ruled it was late, a call that was later
confirmed by video review.
Washington lost its previous eight visits to Atlanta by an
average of 13.0 points. The Wizards last won there Jan. 11, 2008,
going 1-16 overall against the Hawks since that victory.
Seraphin had a season-high 21 points and 10 rebounds in last
month’s matchup and enters Friday having posted three straight
Teammate Trevor Ariza had his only double-double of the season
in that game with 12 points and 15 boards off the bench, but he is
likely to miss this one with a calf injury.
Korver could return for Atlanta (10-5), which has won seven of
eight, after missing one contest due to back spasms and Wednesday’s
home game versus Denver with his wife about to give birth.
The Hawks still beat the Nuggets 108-104 as Al Horford had 25
points with 12 rebounds and Josh Smith added 16 and 13.
While Atlanta allowed 100 points in consecutive games for the
first time this season, it made some key stops down the stretch to
bounce back from a 113-111 home loss to Cleveland last Friday.
“Hopefully we can just build from this game,” coach Larry Drew
said. “I’m just happy that we pushed through it. The difference was
we kept pushing. We didn’t break. We didn’t bend.”
Smith, who turned 27 on Wednesday, has averaged 22.0 points and
11.3 rebounds in his last six games versus Washington.