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Wizards shut down Pistons in second half, win in Detroit
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Wednesday night’s kickoff of the Wizards’ longest road trip of the season didn’t go according to plan. After a blowout loss in Charlotte, head coach Scott Brooks and his team were looking for answers Friday in Detroit.
After a rocky start to the evening, Kelly Oubre Jr. and Bradley Beal poured in 26 points apiece to rally Washington to an important 122-112 victory over the Pistons. For Oubre, the scoring outburst that was punctuated by five 3-pointers marked a new career high.
Beal and John Wall (16 points, 11 assists) combined for 26 points in the third quarter to fuel a massive 45-point Wizards outburst in the frame to grab control of a game the Pistons had led by 15 in the first half. The D.C. backcourt helped spark a key 14-6 run to open the third quarter, and Wall’s 10 points in the third snapped a scoreless streak he took into halftime. By the end of the quarter, the Wizards had built a 17-point cushion.
Washington had to battle early to get into the half with the score tied and set up a strong third quarter. The Wizards endured two big Pistons runs (12-0 and 11-0, respectively) in the first quarter before finding a big 22-6 spurt of their own in the second that was sparked by a Tomas Satoransky chase-down block.
Otto Porter Jr.’s 11 first-half points along with a strong bench performance from Oubre, Jodie Meeks and Mike Scott. Porter finished with 16 points, seven rebounds and four steals in an impressive outing to snap out of his recent offensive slump.
Detroit had one final objection to the Wizards’ torrid second half, and it all came on the shoulders of rookie guard Luke Kennard. The Duke product tallied 16 points in the fourth quarter to cut the Pistons’ deficit to as little as four with less than four minutes remaining in the game. Oubre’s final 3-pointer of the night (a four-point play with a foul on the shot) came at a critical time to stop a 14-4 Detroit run. Beal put the final nail in the coffin with a step-back jumper that put Washington up eight with 1:30 to play.
Next, the Wizards will get their first of two two-day breaks on this road trip before taking on the Mavericks in Dallas on Monday night. Tipoff is scheduled for 8:30 p.m.
Odds and Ends from Friday night’s win…
- Third quarters have been the Wizards’ friend against the Pistons this season. With Friday’s 45-point quarter in Detroit, Washington has now outscored the Pistons 113-59 in three wins this season.
- The Wizards shot over 60 percent from both the field and 3-point range to score a whopping 76 points in the second half Friday, a season-best mark for the team in 2017-18.
- Despite Andre Drummond’s 21 rebounds for Detroit, Washington still held its own in the rebounding category (34-35) and controlled the paint offensively with a 46-32 advantage.