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By the numbers: Bertans' career night fuels Wizards' win over Nuggets
The Wizards earned their third win in a row on Wednesday night, beating the Nuggets 130-128 in a back-and-forth final minute of action. Davis Bertans set new career highs in points and threes, Russell Westbrook tallied another triple-double and Bradley Beal stayed consistent. Below, a look at the win by the numbers.
BERTANS SETS NEW PERSONAL HIGHS
The Wizards were led by a career-best performance from Bertans, who set new career highs in both points (35) and 3-pointers made (9). Before Wednesday night, he had hit eight 3-pointers in a game three times in his career, most recently on March 8, 2020 against Miami. Bertans was 4-4 (1.000) from three in the second quarter, the seventh time since the start of the 2019-20 season that he’s hit at least four threes in a quarter. Bertans trails only Damian Lillard (14), Buddy Hield (10), Duncan Robinson (10) and James Harden (8) for the most such quarters in that time.
THE LASER’S NIGHT IN HISTORY
Bertans’ big night put him in rare company in Wizards history. The Latvian Laser becomes just the third player in franchise history to hit at least nine 3-pointers in a single game, joining Bradley Beal (9) and Trevor Ariza (10). Bertans, however, surpassed those two in efficiency, shooting 81.8% from beyond the arc. Beal was 9-12 (.750) while Ariza shot 10-14 (.714). Per Wizards PR, Bertans’ nine threes off the bench were the most in franchise history and tied for the most by any player in the league off the bench since 2010.
Bertans joins Moses Malone (36) and Jordan McRae (35) as the only players in franchise history to score 35-plus points off the bench and becomes the third player in the league to do so this season, joining Charlotte’s Malik Monk (36) and Jordan Clarkson (40). All three of those games have come in the month of February.
Per Wizards PR, Bertans has now shot a combined 14-17 from three over the last two games, becoming just the second player in league history to make at least 14 threes on 17-or-fewer attempts in a two-game span. Latrell Sprewell also went 14-17 on February 4 and 6 in 2003.
BERTANS FROM THE FREE THROW LINE
In addition to his 3-point shooting performance, Bertans made all eight of his free throw attempts, the second time he’s made at least eight free throws in a game this season. Bertans is only the second player in franchise history to hit at least eight threes and eight free throws in the same game, joining Beal, who accomplished the feat last season. Bertans, Stephen Curry and Fred VanVleet are the only players to do so this season.
WESTBROOK PACKS THE STAT SHEET
After recording 12 points, 13 rebounds and 12 assists on Wednesday against Denver, Westbrook now ranks second in team history with seven triple-doubles, despite playing just 19 games in a Wizards uniform. The former MVP is tied with John Wall and Wes Unseld, who played 573 and 984 games, respectively, for the franchise. Westbrook now sits eight triple-doubles behind Darrell Walker for the franchise’s career triples-doubles record and two games behind Walker for the single-season triple-doubles record. Westbrook has totaled 10-plus dimes in four straight games and, in his 19 games this season, has led the team in both rebounds and assists 13 times.
BENCH POINTS PROVIDE A BOOST
Against Denver, the Wizards set a new season high in bench points with 71, led by Bertans’ breakout performance and 24 combined points from Alex Len and Raul Neto. Washington’s previous high this season came against the Heat on January 9, when the team’s reserves combined for 69 points. In its last five games, the Washington bench unit is averaging 41.6 points per game, which ranks fourth in the NBA in that time. The Wizards’ bench got it done on defense as well, holding Denver’s reserves to just 35 points off the bench.
BEAL TALLIES DOUBLE-DOUBLE
After a slow start, scoring just two points in the first quarter, Beal got back to his ways with a 14-point second quarter and finished the night with 25 points, four rebounds and 10 assists. Beal has now scored 25-plus points in 22 of his 24 games this season, tied with Stephen Curry and Luka Doncic for the most in the NBA. It marked the 11th time in Beal’s career that he totaled 25 points and 10 assists in the same game, good for fourth in team history.
WIZARDS RIDE 46-POINT QUARTER TO A COMEBACK
Late in the first quarter, the Wizards trailed the Nuggets by 20 points, but quickly erased the deficit on their way to a win. The 20-point first quarter deficit is the steepest the team has faced this season and the largest they have overcome to win since erasing a 24-point margin against the Clippers on November 20, 2018. The comeback was fueled by a 46-point second quarter, the team’s second-highest scoring quarter of the season, trailing only their 48-point fourth quarter against Brooklyn on January 31. Washington shot 14-22 (.636) from the field, 5-8 (.625) from 3-point range and 13-15 (.867) from the free throw line in the second. Deni Avdija became the first Wizards player since Tomas Satoransky in 2017 to register a plus-minus of plus-20 or better in a quarter without scoring a point.
SCORING ON THE BREAK
The Wizards and Nuggets entered Wednesday’s game playing very different styles with Washington leading the league in pace (104.4) while the Nuggets ranked 27th (98.2). Those styles were on full display as the Wizards topped the Nuggets 9-0 in fast break points. Washington shot 4-5 (.800) in the break while Denver missed their one and only such attempt. The Wizards have now outscored their opponent in fast break points in five straight games.
Stats and research: Wizards Communications, NBA Stats and Basketball Reference