Satoransky's career-high powers Wizards past Bulls
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The Wizards entered Saturday night’s contest in Chicago on their ninth two-game losing streak of the season, and just like each one before it, the slide ended there. Washington was bruised and battered (and had a bout with the flu), but emerged victorious over a similarly shorthanded Bulls team, 101-90, thanks in large part to Tomas Satoransky’s career-high 25 points.
Already without point guard John Wall, Saturday’s win came after Markieff Morris (illness) was ruled out minutes before tip-off, while Ian Mahinmi (also with flu-like symptoms), Tim Frazier (nasal fracture), and Satoransky all left the game before all was said and done. All of the aforementioned injuries figure to be short-lived, but it didn’t make life easier Saturday as the game wore on against a scrappy Bulls team. Chicago itself was missing starters Kris Dunn and Zach LaVine on the night.
Still, the Wizards used all of the hallmarks of their recent success to grind out another road victory and stop a losing slide before it could get started. The ball zipped around to the tune of 31 assists on 38 field goals and a focus on the defensive end made it hard on Chicago all night. With Saturday’s win, Washington moved to 16-2 on the year when holding opponents under 100 points.
Kelly Oubre Jr. started in the place of Morris and brought his usual all-around effort to a Wizards team that needed another motor on the night. He scored 11 points to go with eight rebounds, posting a team-high +23 +/- ratio. As usual, Mike Scott anchored the bench unit, this time with 14 points, while Otto Porter Jr. tacked on 14 points and nine boards.
Washington used Satoransky’s 15 first-half points (3-of-3 from 3-point range) and a well-balanced effort otherwise to take a 10-point lead into the halftime break before extending the lead to 14 early in the third. That proved important despite a dismal shooting night from the Bulls (28 percent from 3-point range 42.5 from the field), as the young Chicago squad with seven double-figure scorers on the night were still able to claw within seven with just over four minutes remaining in the game. Satoransky’s fourth 3-pointer of the night with just over three minutes remaining proved to be the nail in the coffin for a Washington win.
Next, the Wizards get a much-needed three day break to heal up before their last game before the All-Star break on Wednesday in New York. Tip-off against the Knicks is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. at Madison Square Garden.
Odds and Ends
- Bradley Beal scored just seven points Saturday on 3-of-13 shooting (0-7 3-point). It was just his fourth game of the season in which he didn’t score 10 points or more.
- Tomas Satoransky’s career-high 25 points mark the most by a Czech Republic native in NBA history.
- Washington’s streak of sound free-throw shooting continued Saturday as it shot 12-for-14 (85 percent) from the line.