93

83

John Wall made his long awaited return and led the Wizards to a 93-83 win over the Atlanta Hawks on Saturday night at Verizon Center. Wall tallied 14 points, four assists, and two rebounds in 22 minutes of play.

It was a fantastic sight to see for Wizards fans as Wall entered the game midway through the first quarter to make his debut. His first point of the season came from the free throw line and then his first assist was a dandy as he fed Bradley Beal for a thunderous one-handed jam. The Wizards led the Hawks 27-17 after the first period and controlled play throughout.

The Hawks would fight back in the second, taking the lead away from the Wizards before Kevin Seraphin would give the Wizards a 51-50 halftime lead with a jump-hook right before the half.

The Wizards had control for most of the second half and for once this season were able to cruise to victory. John Wall would enter for the final six minutes and turn out the lights on the Hawks, giving the Wizards their first win over Atlanta of the season.

Trevor Booker also returned to the Wizards lineup after missing over a month with a knee injury. He finished with two points and two boards in eight minutes.

Bradley Beal and A.J. Price led the team with 16 points each. Martell Webster ended with 15 points, while Emeka Okafor notched another double-double with 10 points and 10 boards.

Next, the Wizards host the Orlando Magic at Verizon Center as the Wizards will go for their third straight win.


Kevin Seraphin
Points: 8
Rebounds: 7
Assists: 0

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Points: Beal and Price - 16
Rebounds: Okafor and Nene - 10
Assists: John Wall - 4
Blocks: Trevor Booker - 2
Steals: Bradley Beal - 3

On the game:

“We came out and played a really complete game. Obviously, we talk about ups and downs in a game, but we didn’t have any lasting bad spells. I thought the second quarter was really it. I think we had 10 turnovers at halftime, and I’ve got to think eight came in the second quarter. That’s the only reason it was 51-50 at halftime. I thought by our turnovers, we helped them get back in the game. We came out in the third quarter and moved the ball.”

On the offense:

“This is three games in a row now, where we’ve moved the ball; passed the ball; don’t over dribble; don’t try to go one-on-one, don’t try to do anything that we’re not capable of doing. We ended up with five guys in double figures, and two more with eight points. The movement of the basketball has been great. I think that has to be something that we continue to build on. I thought (the things) Trevor Ariza did, doesn’t show in the box score. I thought he was instrumental in the second half. We put him on (Kyle) Korver, and told him not to give him a look. He did not give him a look. He came up with nine rebounds. Coming down the stretch, I thought Trevor really gave us a situation defensively that I liked.”

On emotions:

“It was a big day for me today, seeing how I would feel after only going through practice. My homeboys, my boys at home, were joking, happy the whole day. I was just trying to stay calm and take a nap. I’m just excited to get back out there with my teammates and play in front of the D.C. crowd and help my team get a win.”

On fourth quarter:

“I think I just got my legs. I played seven minutes straight, that’s what I needed. My teammates trusted me and coaches gave me the ball and told me to make plays, and basically I did that.”

On having Wall back:

“John, he’s just awesome. The impact he had on the game, he brings so much energy and enthusiasm and he plays hard. He’s really helping us down the stretch in the fourth quarter. He really makes things easier. He takes the pressure off you, you don’t necessarily have to care for yourself all the time. He draws the defense into him. He showed he can score or he can make a nice pass, or a jump shot.”

On chemistry with Wall:

“It’s his IQ for the game. It’s me reading his eyes, and him reading me. The chemistry is already there, it’s been there since I’ve been here. It’s just going to continue to grow.

On having Wall back:

“It was really good, very good for the team. I’m happy for him personally. He played very well tonight and he gave us a huge emotional lift that I think we fed off. “

On total team effort:

“A total team effort tonight. A great job and it has to go to the past couple days of practice we’ve been having. Just getting our continuity back with John (Wall) being back in the lineup, (Trevor) Booker, a lot of guys that we had injured. Trevor (Ariza). So it feels good to have the team full strength.”

On the effect of Wall's return:

“It completely changes the dynamics of this team. Opens the court up. He’s able to get in and penetrate and find guys on opposite sides, either side of the ball and guys are knocking down jump shots. Once we get more into the rhythm with having John (Wall) out there I think that we’ll start to complement his game very well, but tonight was a great effort.”

On control of game:

“We had control of that game the whole time. Even when they brought the game back, I felt like we were very much in control.”