Wizards beat Knicks in second preseason game, 104-100

John Wall scored 19 points and the Wizards forced 29 turnovers in the win
Photos | Box Score

The Wizards played host to the Knicks on Friday night in their second preseason game of 2017-18. John Wall made his preseason debut, scoring 19 points on 9-for-14 shooting to go along with six assists. The Wizards scored 28 points off of the Knicks’ turnovers. The preseason may not matter, but the Wizards locked in defensively in the second half, holding the Knicks to only 38 points.

Starters play together for first time this preseason

John Wall, Bradley Beal, Otto Porter Jr., and Marcin Gortat played together for the first time officially this preseason on Friday night. Jason Smith started at power forward in place of Markieff Morris for the second straight game. The unit was disappointed in their effort defensively, but the starters meshed well overall with Smith. Wall and Beal combined for 32 points in a little more than half their usual playing time. Porter had a strong overall game, scoring seven points and grabbing seven rebounds to go with four steals in 22-plus minutes.

"It was great," Wall said of being healthy coming into his first preseason action. "First time in my career. I dedicated my summer getting in the best shape possible and just putting a lot of work into my game, and hopefully it pays off throughout the whole season.”

The projected second unit played well down the stretch

Kelly Oubre Jr. scored 14 points, including two key 3-pointers down the stretch, and ran with Wall, Beal, Porter, and Gortat during the game. Ian Mahinmi had six points and four rebounds and led the game with a +14 +/-. Mahinmi was winning loose balls and played well in his almost 17 minutes. Mike Scott had 12 points (5-for-9 field goals), four rebounds, and three assists in 19 minutes of action, showing why he’s a clear candidate to start at the four. Jodie Meeks hit two more 3-pointers to add to his four in the first game of the preseason, and Tomas Satoransky distributed the ball well with five assists in 22 minutes. Overall, the bench looked strong against the Knicks’ starters and reserves.

"He can give you the inside game or outside game," Beal said of Scott. "I always call him Mr. Effcient because he's a bucket. I played him in college before too so he's just automatic. I love his drive and focus in the game. He's all about his teammates and being locked into the game. He can score. He can score in a variety of ways. He can shoot threes, give it to you in the post, put it on the floor, he's a great pick and roll player too. he's everything that we need him to be. He's proven it."

Strong second half defense wins the game

The Wizards forced 17 turnovers for 14 points and held the Knicks to 13-for-35 (37.1%) shooting in the second half. Washington’s starters played a little more than half of the third quarter for the most part, but it was the bench unit that was just as active defensively. The reserves totaled seven of the team’s 12 steals, anchored by Mahinmi.

"Our first half our offense was good," Scott Brooks said of the second unit after the game. "Thirty-five points in the second quarter, 28 points in the first. We just couldn't get the stops that it takes to win in this league consistently. I thought the third and fourth quarter defense picked up, played much better. We're still trying to get a rythm, how we play and how we want to play going forward but like I said I thought the guys gave great effort, especially in the second half on the defensive end."

Next up, the Wizards will host the Cavaliers on Sunday at 3pm.