Washington Wizards v New York Knicks
NEW YORK, NY - FEBRUARY 12: Rui Hachimura #8 of the Washington Wizards gets ready to shoot a free throw during the game against the New York Knicks on February 12, 2020 at Madison Square Garden in New York City, New York.
Jesse D. Garrabrant/NBAE via Getty Images

Hachimura's top three performances of the season so far

Over the first 41 games of his career, Rui Hachimura has done a little bit of everything for the Wizards. A plug-and-play, multi-positional threat, Hachimura has been a welcome, productive addition to the Wizards’ young roster. He recorded a double-double in his first career game, has totaled seven 20-point games and has scored 15-plus points in half his appearances. Here’s a look at Hachimura’s top three performances of the season.

3. February 11, 2020 vs. Chicago

20 PTS / 4 REB / 3 AST / 2 STL / 2 BLK

Hachimura has been praised this season for showing flashes of versatility not often seen in a rookie. He can score from the post, hit from mid-range and push the ball in transition. In what was his fourth game back in the lineup after missing 23 games to a groin injury, Hachimura played one of his most complete games of the season. In 32 minutes, he scored 20 points, finished plus-20 and registered the only game of his young career with multiple blocks and multiple steals. Hachimura scored 14 of his 20 points in the first half, including a stretch late in the second quarter when he and Beal combined to scored nine consecutive points to hold off a Chicago surge.

2. December 5, 2019 vs. Philadelphia

27 PTS / 7 REB / 11-18 (.611) FG

In the midst of his best scoring run of the season and four days after setting a new career high against the Clippers, Hachimura notched another 20-point performance, scoring a team-high 27 points on 11-18 (.618) from the field against a formidable Sixers defense. The rookie did so in 43 minutes of action, his most in a regulation game this season. Most of Hachimura’s production came in the second quarter, one of the most explosive quarters of the Wizards’ season. Hachimura shot 6-7 (.857) from the field and scored 15 points while Davis Bertans poured in 19 points on 7-7 (1.000) from the field and 5-5 (1.000) from deep as the Wizards outscored the Sixers 40-22 in the quarter. Hachimura played all 12 minutes of the second and all 12 minutes of the decisive fourth quarter, scoring six points and helping hold off a late Philadelphia run in the final frame.

“It's crazy,” Wizards head coach Scott Brooks said. “He's like a seven or eight-year vet. He just chips away at the game every time. That guy, he's a winner. He just plays the right way. He plays hard, he plays for his team. He's not searching for stats, he just competes and he wants to get better. He knows he has a lot to learn and he's a sponge out there, he wants to improve. Every matchup that he plays is the first time he's playing against that guy.”

“I can see now,” Hachimura said. “We’ve played 20 games and I’ve played every game. I’m comfortable now seeing my spots. Brad [Beal], he gets the double-teams every game, so I know what he wants and where the open spots are. I’m more comfortable.”

1. December 1, 2019 at Los Angeles Clippers

30 PTS / 9 REB / 3 AST / 12-23 (.565) FG

Hachimura’s best game of the season and his only 30-point performance of his career came on December 1 against the Clippers. Like his 27-point game against the Sixers, this outing came amongst his most prolific scoring stretch of the season. His 30-point night against Los Angeles led the team and was his second of eight consecutive games scoring in double figures and one of four games this season in which Hachimura his multiple 3-pointers.

Hachimura came out hot, scoring nine points in the first quarter, including a mid-range jumper less than a minute into the game. After the Wizards fell behind in the second quarter, Hachimura’s third quarter performance helped lead a 16-4 run to help the Wizards cut into the league. In the third, Hachimura played all 12 minutes, scoring 14 points on 6-9 (.667) from the field and 2-4 (.500) from 3-point range. He grabbed three of his team-high nine rebounds and finished plus-seven in the frame.

“I’m still trying to get used to this NBA game,” Hachimura said postgame. “It’s different compared to college and FIBA. There is a lot of travel, a lot of games, but I think I’m going to have to take care of my body more, then I can play 30 to 35 minutes throughout the game and be physical.”

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