Despite a late fourth quarter charge, the Wizards hung on to take down the Portland Trail Blazers, 84-82, to pick up their first win of the 2012-13 season.

After a back and forth first half which found the game tied at 43, the Wizards built up a 15 point fourth quarter lead. But, the offense went ice cold which led to a 16-0 Blazers run to give them an 80-79 lead with 2:27 to go. Right after the Blazers took the lead, the offense woke up as Jordan Crawford knocked down a three ball to put the Wizards back on top. Lamarcus Aldridge would answer with a basket to tie the game and Emeka Okafor would hit two free throws with 39 seconds to go which would prove to be the last scoring of the night and give the Wizards the victory.

Defense and bench play was the name of the game for the Wizards as the defense held the high scoring Blazers to just 32.3% shooting and the bench outscored the Blazers bench by a huge margin, 46-4. Jordan Crawford led that effort off the bench and the team with 19 points on 50% shooting, Trevor Ariza had 14 points on 66% shooting and Kevin Seraphin had a double-double with 10 points and 10 boards. For the Blazers, Nicolas Batum and Damian Lillard led the way with 20 points a piece while JJ Hickson had a double-double with 15 points and 19 boards.

Up next, the Wizards go for two in a row as they take on the Knicks at MSG on Friday night.

Kevin Seraphin
Points: 10
Rebounds: 10
Blocks: 1

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Points: Jordan Crawford - 19
Rebounds: Kevin Seraphin - 10
Assists: A.J. Price - 6
Blocks: Kevin Seraphin and Emeka Okafor - 1
Steals: Emeka Okafor - 3

On Game:

“We won and that’s the most important thing. Tonight, again our defense saved the day for us. As we have been preaching all along, we got to keep that at the standard that it is. To hold them to 34 percent shooting and 82 points, that won us the game. Our bench outscored them 46-4 I think. Our bench was huge. We really got contributions from everybody.”

On Jordan Crawford, Chris Singleton, and Trevor Ariza:

“I thought Jordan (Crawford) coming in was pretty consistent all night tonight. He gave us a big lift with those 19 points. I thought Chris (Singleton) was huge for us. I mean he battled (LaMarcus) Aldridge probably better than anyone we had tonight both in post-ups and pick-and-rolls. Trevor Ariza was spectacular for his 36 minutes. I thought he defended, got his hands on balls and took really good shots.”
On tonight’s performance:

“We stayed with it. We took as close to 48 minutes as we possibly could. We made a run. We didn’t let that rattle us. We came out with victory.”

On the emotions of the night:

“It was a great feeling. Everybody was happy. We finally got a win and got that monkey off our backs. But we’re not satisfied. We want to continue to win so we’re going to do what we need to do to try to win.”
On game:

“It’s not a sense of relief. I mean it is but we can’t celebrate too much. We have a tough New York team coming up and that’s where our next focus is. We’ve shown that we are capable of winning now and we just have to keep it up. The meeting yesterday definitely helped out and as a team we came together and stuck together through the end. We did all the little things we needed to do and that is what got us the win tonight.”

On responding to Portland’s run in the run fourth quarter:

“We told each other to stay poised. Don’t separate from each other. As long as we keep staying together and staying the course and doing the little things like blocking out, making the extra rotations, and grabbing rebounds. Those are all little things that really add up to a win at the end and that’s what we ended up doing. Although they went on a run, we retaliated and bounced back from it.”
On the win:

“It feels good to pull one out, especially the way we did because we’ve been losing a lot of those. It gives us a lot of confidence.”

On the first win of the season:

“It’s definitely a monkey off the back. We’ve been losing a lot of close games and to finally pull one out it showed that we can do it and we’re getting better each day and not giving up.”